Truly savoring those split-second encounters with beauty, oddity and unexpected inspiration
Working on a public art project in a maintenance yard in West Los Angeles recently, I bent over to retrieve my pen and caught a glimpse of scattered trash, smashed cans, spilled chemicals, and some sort of baby blue iridescent powder spewed out on the cracked cement (Pic #1). It reminded me of the kinds of abstract paintings and collages I’m drawn to, and it made me wish I’d assembled this one first.
A week later, in downtown Los Angeles at the old historic Pabst Brewery, I took a wrong turn during an art exhibition and found myself in a hallway not included in the ArtWalk map. Again, a pile of junk — this time stacked up against a rusted door sporting a straight red line dividing the space into thirds (Pic #2). To me, it had all the appeal of my first encounter with a Rauschenberg assemblage (Pic #3). The jolt comes in the discovery. The joy comes in documenting the image and taking it home.
Imagine how many visual treats you might discover if you really began to look. Every time you step off a curb, drive through a car wash, or stand at the post office, you’d be adding to your mental – or digital- archive. Whether it’s on the back of a truck or trash on the street, the right combination of “things” is always vying for our attention. But unless we actually take advantage of the opportunity, the chance to capture these lovely images passes us by.
Art can truly be found everywhere…. even in your neighbor’s swimming pool. See “pool art” here. I promise you, by allowing yourself to spot it, catch it, and record it, you get to ignite your creative instincts, and more important, enrich your work – and your life.