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25.2 - Waiting for the Muse

#2: Waiting for the Muse

It was once thought that creativity could not be willed.

Percy Bysshe Shelley wrote:

A man cannot say, "I will compose poetry."

The greatest poet even cannot say it: for the mind in creation is as a fading coal which some invisible influence, like an inconstant wind, awakens to transitory brightness; this power arises from within, like the colour of a flower which fades and changes as it is developed, and the conscious portions of our natures are unprophetic either of its approach or its departure.1

While I like the metaphor of a burning coal, I believe that photographers can breathe on their coal/creativity to make it happen, as does John Cage.

He wrote:

I think people who are not artists often feel that artists are inspired.

But if you work at your art you don't have time to be inspired.

Can't find or make a photograph?

Don't feel like finding or making a photograph?

Pick up your camera, and take a photograph of anything to get something.

1 In A Defence of Poetry, written in response to an article, The Four Ages of Poetry, by Thomas Love Peacock.