Fall is coming to an end here in Montana and I have an increased urgency to get outdoors for a fix of warm sunshine before winter sets in. While out and about, I’m reminded of all the things I love about nature. The ever-changing sky, waving trees, soft breeze, bird songs, mountain vistas… so many things to love, no wonder it’s my main inspiration in art!
I also love reading about other artist’s internal motivations for the work they create. From what I can gather, nature is the #1 instigator of creative urges – why is that? What is it about nature that inspires so many? This is on my mind right now as we prepare for the coming change in seasons.
Nature’s splendor has caused humans to exult, cry, write poems, sing, and has birthed countless beautiful paintings. Whole civilizations have gathered around it, organizations have formed to preserve it, and humans of all time have revered it in one way or another.
There are many different variations of scenery that move us – forests, mountains, deserts, bodies of water, plants, animals. And that’s just on this planet – what about the heavens?! The moon, the stars, the sky…wow.
Strong visual memories of the outdoors punctuate my life’s timeline. Bicycling through dark forest paths; gazing up, up, up at towering sunflowers; make-believing in giant lilac bushes that formed play houses with their arching twisty trunks; discovering hidey-holes in sandstone bluffs; wandering down country roads and encountering irritated blackbird mommas, darting rabbits, and a secret little tadpole pond – these are all magical childhood recollections.
Is this effect due to nature being created for us, or were we created for nature? Is it something we are made to need, like we do food, water and sleep? What is it about nature that draws us? Is nature something that also resides in us? As part of our very being? These are things I contemplate as I’m creating my work.
I’m not trying to give a pat answer to that question here, because I don’t believe there is one. But it is intriguing to ponder the pull nature has on us. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this if you don’t mind commenting below.