According to the dictionary, art is defined as any creation that is above the ordinary aesthetically. Art can consist of painting, sculpture, needlework, writing, crafting of all kinds, cooking, and even some trades or jobs. For me, art consist of needlepoint, embroidery, writing, cooking, dancing, and gardening. Currently, my emphasis is on writing, needlepoint, and cooking. Before retiring, I considered myself an artist because teaching involves creativity, design, and expression. In my classroom, students were the palette upon which my art was created. My paints were knowledge, understanding, and creativity. Teachers must paint a picture of the concept or objective being taught using many tools such as projects to be researched and presented to the class in various forms. Now, I am using those same tools to develop my skills and artistic ability to enhance my home environment.
My inspiration comes from many different sources. The sound of rain on the roof, the chill in the air on a clear fall morning, the sight of a fall sunset, or the sight of a huge, orange harvest moon in October are sources that influence the development of a new needlepoint creation. The beautiful hue of leaves in the woods beside my house as the sun gently touches them often inspires me to write poetry or prose about the season. The seasonal changes are a major influence on all I do. I have always been connected to nature; as I have grown older, a greater appreciation for the beauty and miracle of nature and all its creatures has become very important in my life. As a result of a near heart attack resulting in a heart stint and life-style change, nature and the miracle of life became a major influence in my creativity. The old saying, “Step back and smell the roses,” took on a new meaning for me. Sitting outside on a beautiful morning with a cup of coffee or hot tea has become a routine part of my morning ritual.
Nature’s beauty provides my canvas of paper, food, or cloth with the palette of colors needed to create a work of art. The colors, shapes, and textures found in nature for the basis for my creations. Observation of the tiniest details provides me with ideas and starting points for my creations. Studying nature by observing and participating in outdoor activities is the best way to provide understanding and artistic inspiration.