Music And The Muse

When I was little, I had a record called Havin’ Fun with Ernie & Bert. I would listen to this record, doing all the dances and activities, as often as my mother could stand it. But there was one song on the album that has stuck with me throughout the (more than I’d like to count) years: Imagination, sung by Ernie.

Ernie encourages us to close our eyes and tell him what we see. The unimaginative Oscar the Grouch says, “You can’t see anything with your eyes closed,” but the other characters shush him and begin telling us what they see: blobs and stars and oceans and birds. Then Ernie starts singing about what happens when he uses his imagination. I still get goose bumps listening to it today.

This song was probably one of the first links I had between music and creativity. How listening to a song can spark new ideas. How a single line can inspire a new design. How the underlying melody and beat can make my fingers itch to pick up my tools and start creating. I often listen to music while I’m working on my jewelry, sometimes I can’t work without it. Music invigorates and motivates me, and helps me get in touch with my muse.

Imagination and creativity can be tricky things, elusive and stubborn one day, flooding us with ideas the next. For me, music can help to direct my inner artist, riding the waves of crescendos and diminuendos, dancing along the chords and verses, moving to the rhythm. Try putting your favorite music player on random or shuffle and close your eyes. What do you see?

“I look inside and discover things,
That are sometimes strange and new,
And the most remarkable thoughts I think,
Have a way of being true.” .

And that’s one of the best things about being an artist/designer/crafter/creative person. Taking those strange and wonderful ideas and bringing them to life.

You can open your eyes now, kids.

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