Monday, December 26, 2011

Shifting Perspective


A Day in the Life -sketchbook project page 24 color pencils 

All the good ideas I ever had came to me while I was milking a cow 
-Grant Wood, painter. 

From the book 'The Creative Spirit' by Daniel Goleman, Paul Kaufman and Michael Ray ( companion book to the PBS special from early 1990s with the same title) on the importance of being 'open to insights from the unconscious mind in moments of reverie, when we are not thinking of anything in particular' :  

News of the Creative Past: Well, the creative spirit has struck again, this time on a cool evening in 1865. The chemist Friedrich Kekule has just discovered the elusive structure of the benzene molecule, a major breakthrough in organic chemistry.  Kekule credits his breakthrough - and we will have to take his word on this- to a day dream.

Mr. Kekule reports that after a long day of thinking, he was relaxing in front of the fire, just watching embers fly up in a circular patterns. He says he then became transfixed and fell into a reverie, and as he half dozed, he began to see the sparks dance in a snakelike way. Suddenly, the sparks formed a whirling circle as if it were a snake biting its own tail. Kekule says he then awoke in a flash with a new, accurate picture of the structure of a benzene molecule: a ring! 

So, is there a better way to solve my problem than stretch on the sofa, put my feet up and daydream? 

4 comments:

Kathy Staicer said...

Wow! What a coincidence. Your feet look great! You must have been relaxing because it certainly brought out your creativity!

meera said...

Thanks Kathy - great minds think alike?

padmaja said...

It is a beautiful painting Meera! Relaxation/reflection/introspection do help a lot in bringing out the best from us.

meera said...

Padmaja, Thank you! I guess we all have to find our own ways to make contact with that elusive muse of creative ideas :)

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