Sunday, 9 October 2016

Creative Sprint I

All this month I am taking part in Creative Sprint, an online art project whereby participants are emailed a prompt each day for 30 days, with the intention of inspiring a creative work, to then be shared on social media. 

Though I have been sharing my work in the Creative Sprint group on Facebook, I thought I would document what I have created each week here also, no matter how messy or silly or just plain bad it turns out to be. At first I was enthusiastic about doing so … then I became very reluctant … then enthusiastic again …

I want this blog to be a place where I share my best self, my best writing and art, and much of what I create for this project will not be my best work—nor am I feeling my best, currently, which makes this even more of a challenge. Therefore, I almost decided not to share anything at all. It takes some courage to reveal ‘imperfect’ things publicly, the rudimentary creations that I would otherwise keep to myself. But good art often starts simply, humbly; and I hope that this project will inspire me to greater things.

So, without further ado, I step bravely into the unknown …

Day 1: Make something that fits in the palm of your hand using only the materials in your immediate environment.

It was such a warm, sunny spring day after a few very wintry ones, that I decided to make this rosy-cheeked fellow. I wanted to photograph him in the sun, but there was too much glare, and you couldn’t see the colours properly. So I photographed him in the shade instead, making sure there was sunshine on the ground in the background. This led me to use the shadow cast by the house to divide the image diagonally, half sun and half shade. Light and dark, day and night. I love this!

Little Sunfelt tip pen and coloured pencil on card

Day 2: Use your name as inspiration for what you create.

I had plenty of ideas for this prompt, as one morning last year, when I was drifting in a hypnopompic state, it occurred to me that my name is an anagram of ‘the seer’ and ‘she tree’. At the time, this seemed magical, and made me very, very happy. My name, from possible Greek roots, is also said to mean ‘she who reaps’. So, for this prompt I wanted to create an image, perhaps of a girl picking fruit from a tree, or of a woman who was half woman, half tree. Unfortunately, exhaustion was with me, and the thought of drawing something so complex made my head reel (though I find drawing difficult at the best of times). I decided I had to keep things very small, and very simple, and this is what I came up with. A compromise, and not quite as I envisioned it, but good enough under the circumstances.

She Tree, felt tip pen on paper

Day 3: Use a nursery rhyme or other children’s song as your source material, today.

I did not like this prompt much. Everything I thought of seemed too complex, too difficult, and I did not have the energy for complexity. Luckily, I remembered Incy Wincy Spider, and that made things easy. I aimed for cuteness above all else.

Incy Wincy Spider, felt tip pen on paper

Day 4: Create something inspired by the weather outside today.

It has been terribly windy here, though this day was comparatively breezy, so I made a film of the dancing trees. Make sure you look for the little bird in the lemon tree at the end.

Dancing Trees

Day 5: Camouflage something.

I took advantage of my visit to Everglades Historic House & Gardens, and tried to blend in with the trees, wearing my cardigan of weeds.


Day 6: Deliver a message to someone in an unusual way.

I cheated a little with this one, using a photo that I took the day before at Everglades, but I interpreted the prompt in this way: A message is a communication, and communication need not be verbal. It could be a gesture, an expression, touch … And ‘someone’ need not be a human being. So, by touching this Pasque Flower, by taking a photo, I was acknowledging it, showing my appreciation, wordlessly, through touch and the capturing of an image to remember it by. Simply saying, Thank you for being. (Whether or not this is an ‘unusual’ way of delivering a message is debatable, but it was my particular response to this prompt).

Pasque Flower

Day 7: Make something that represents the town, city, state or country you call home.

I made things easy for myself again, putting together a collage of photos showing various aspects of the landscape I live in, as well as our most ubiquitous residents: birds. From top to bottom, a pair of kookaburras, a magpie, a galah, and an eastern spinebill.

Blue Mountains Collage


  1. "It takes some courage to reveal ‘imperfect’ things publicly..."

    But often, our idea of 'imperfect,' is too critical. And I feel that 'totally perfect' is way too high a bar to set, for ourselves. Let what we do, flow from our heart. I like that, as a more human goal. :-)

    Thank you for sharing...

    Luna Crone

    1. Thank you, Luna. Of course you are right. I'm sometimes too much of a perfectionist, but with this project I am having to put perfection aside and just go with my gut. It's difficult, but also kind of fun.

  2. A most interesting, inspiring post, Therese, I love all your creations - as a spider-hater, I'm SO pleased you drew a cute Incy!!

    1. Thanks, Claire. The spider got a good response. Now on to my second week of creative work …


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