Velcro and Teflon Creativity

Which of your three creative centers–head, heart or gut–are you being negative to? bionic-brain

The secret to creativity might be summed up in a cheesy neuroscience joke: “The neurons that fire together, wire together.” When we disrespect what one of our intelligence centers is saying to us by automatically responding negatively to it, we are shutting that source of creativity down:

“My gut is always wrong, I never listen to it.”

“Listening to my heart will only cause severe pain and bleeding.”

“I think too much, I shouldn’t listen to my head but only act.”

“It’s a classic saying, and it’s widely accepted because it’s very true,” says neuropsychologist Rick Hanson. “We’ve got this negativity bias that’s a kind of bug in the stone-age brain in the 21st century,” he says. “It makes it hard for us to learn from our positive experiences, even though learning from your positive experiences is the primary way to grow inner strength.”

There are consequences of our highly interconnected head/heart and gut intelligence centers. Scientists believe our brains have a built-in “negativity bias.” The reason is pretty simple. Since we evolved over millions of years, dodging sticks and chasing carrots (rewards), it was more important to notice, react to, and remember sticks than it was for carrots. It was a tough environment for our ancestors. If they missed out on a carrot, it likely would not kill them; but if they failed to avoid a stick, such as a predator, a poisonous plant, a natural hazard, or overly aggressive fellow caveman, then BAM!, fat chance to pass on their genes.

Our negativity bias shows up in lots of ways. For example, studies have found in a relationship, it typically takes five good interactions to make up for a single bad one. People will work much harder to avoid losing 100 dollars than they will work to gain the same amount of money. Painful experiences are much more memorable than pleasurable ones.

The brain is like Velcro for negative experiences, but Teflon for positive ones. It is said approximately 80 percent of our (up to) 70,000 thoughts per day are negative. This is good and bad news for creativity. Our brains are tilted against lasting contentment and fulfillment. This means our memory banks are full of underlying expectations, assumptions, beliefs, and especially our moods—which automatically move in a negative direction. Mother Nature only cares about passing on genes; she doesn’t care if this means painful suffering in the process. Suffering includes subtle worries to intense feelings of sorrow, worthlessness, or anger and creating suffering for others. Naturally being wired to acquire negative experiences over positive ones, can make us more anxious, irritable, and blue. But these “sticky” emotions also create a deep well for us to draw upon and funnel into creative outlets. Such lack of contentment can result in a felt need and a motivation to create.

“I have the memory of an elephant. I can forgive, but I cannot forget. It is better to light a candle than curse the darkness.” Eleanor Roosevelt

Perhaps the Velcro theory is why Eleanor Roosevelt’s famous elephant quote about her philandering husband makes sense. We are wired to hold onto the negative experience, even if we willfully (from our gut center) try not to. Mrs. Roosevelt exemplifies our need to take the negative and create something new. This is exactly what she did after discovering FDR’s first affair with her own private secretary. Her personal journals expose from this point forward, any remaining intimacy left their relationship. Up to this point she was willing to be a traditional wife, mother of their five children, and homemaker. After this very painful breach of trust, Eleanor established a separate house, and increasingly devoted herself to becoming a human rights and social justice entrepreneur. This included being a pioneer in the womens’ suffrage and African American Civil Rights movements. She was no ordinary first lady–I believe the most entrepreneurial one of all!

Eleanor knew how to make lemonade from potent lemons in her life

Perhaps an even more severe example of “making lemonade” is shown in the video below. This one will blow your mind for sure!

However, on a day to day basis, many of us don’t stay with our positive experiences long enough for them to be encoded into neural structure (meaning there’s not enough wiring and firing going on). On the other hand, we naturally tend to fixate on negative experiences. Positive and negative emotions use different memory systems in the brain, according to Hanson, and positive emotions don’t transfer as easily to long-term memory.

So we easily filter to see the tough parts of life. We can learn to bear negativity by intentionally tilting towards healthy creative outlets. This will lift our energy and spirits and use our resources. But we have to intentionally fill up our cups because positive experiences will wash through us like sieves. Please see a previous post on how to fight ANTS (automatic negative thoughts).

The more we get our neurons firing on positive facts, the more we’ll be wiring up positive neural structures. Intentionally focusing on “taking in the good” is a brain-science savvy and psychologically skillful way to improve how we feel, get things done creatively, and treat others consistently. By taking the positive in–from our head, heart and gut centers–and filling ourselves up with them, we will increasingly feel less fragile or needy inside, and less dependent on external supplies.

How good are you at creatively making lemonade from all the negative lemons in your life? Please share your insights on this, we all have “ANTS,” (mine can build huge mounds in my mind if left untended!)

Thank you for reading my post (excerpts from my recent book). My core message of everyone is creative resonates with people of all ages and walks of life. I invite all to become the best version of themselves in my book and at my website and find true meaning by pursing long term creative quests.

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Are introverts or extroverts more creative?

I could review numerous research studies of the most common personality traits of creative people. Numerous researchers have analyzed, studied, and found the magic “personality formula” for being most creative. I won’t highlight such studies because I don’t believe them–everyone is creative. However, one of the most important personality attributes, from a creativity standpoint, is to seek out time for self.

Pin itTwin studies find that extraversion/introversion has a genetic component.

Being creative means accepting and honoring our unique personality and gifts. Also we want to honor our extroversion or introversion pattern. It is important to know that whether your dominant creative center is your head, heart or gut center that you can be introverted or extroverted. Our intelligence centers do not discriminate between being extroverted or introverted–our dominant intelligence center can be a full range of “E” versus “I” on this continuum.

Author Susan Cain says, “Studies suggest that many of the most creative people are introverts, and this is partly because of their capacity for quiet. Introverts are careful, reflective thinkers who can tolerate the solitude that idea-generation requires. On the other hand, implementing good ideas requires cooperation, and introverts are more likely to prefer cooperative environments, while extroverts favor competitive ones” (2013, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking).

Most comprehensive personality models include the introversion/extroversion concept in various forms. According to Carl Jung (the pioneering psychologist who wrote Psychological Types in 1921), extroversion is a primary personality orientation to things, events, and persons external to oneself. This is a basic attraction leading extroverts to prize “facts,” social networking, and commonly held values.

Introversion, on the other hand, is a primary orientation to, and interest in, one’s own conscious insights, feelings, intuitions, and logical conclusions. According to Jung’s theory, introversion and extroversion are coordinated in various degrees with four basic personality functions. He emphasized, “There is no such thing as a pure extrovert or a pure introvert. Such a man would be in a lunatic asylum.”

According to studies by psychologist Hans Eysenck, introverts require less stimulation from the world in order to be awake and alert than extroverts do. This means introverts are more easily over-stimulated.

People falling near the middle of the spectrum are called “ambiverts” and are equally extroverted and introverted. The important thing is that one is not better than another. Steve Jobs, an extrovert, invented Apple with Steve Wozniak, an introvert. Both famously creative, both honoring and using their temperaments to their advantage. It is very likely that extroverts will do better in high arousal environments than introverts. Each type needs to be cognizant of their preferences in order to enhance their own creativity.

 I am pretty sure that Leonardo da Vinci was more extroverted along this spectrum– sorry Susan! Many Meyers-Briggs personality experts agree with me, with their definition being whether someone prefers to focus on the outer world or their own inner world.

Leonardo is widely considered one of the greatest painters of all time and perhaps the most diversely talented person whom ever lived–yet he is also famous for a vast number of uncompleted creative works. His interests were very diverse including–but not limited to–painter, sculptor, architect, musician, mathematician, engineer, inventor, anatomist, geologist, cartographer, botanist and writer. His preference for mental stimulation (head center dominant) shines through loudly! The small number of his paintings that survive is due to his constant, and frequently disastrous, experimentation with new techniques, and his chronic procrastination. The last sentence of a mathematical theorem in Leonardo’s notebook states: “Perche la minesstra si fredda.” This translates as, “Whatever – the soup is getting cold.”

So–what do you think creatives, are introverts or extroverts generally more creative? I guess that all depends on whether you think you are an introvert or extrovert!

Thank you for reading my post (excerpts from my recent book). My core message of everyone is creative resonates with people of all ages and walks of life. I invite all to become the best version of themselves in my book and at my website and find true meaning by pursing long term creative quests.

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Dogs’ Creativity, Woof!

“If dogs ruled the world” humans would play fetch, too! Wouldn’t you agree? In fact “fetch” would become a national and Olympic sport. The whole world would turn into a never ending dog park… with lots of good belly rubbing and tug-a-war included too.

Pin it        Finn, Bella ready for any hunt or play anytime, anywhere

If dogs ruled the world, all pertinent data would occur in a matter of seconds, no more tedious searching on the internet!

In my home our dogs DO rule our world. We photographed them as “Sheriff Finn” and “Deputy Bella” recently because that truly is who they are.

Both are weimaraner rescues: We adopted Finn first, a larger than normal male at a year old, now over 100 pounds and six years old. We can only guess his name comes from the huge size of his paws. He is sheriff to us all. We must adore and obey him because… well he is King Finn, the lap dog after all.

Then there is deputy Bella, the all adoring (of Finn, we come second) and submissive deputy of five years. If we don’t follow Finn’s orders she backs him up 110%–get with it you guys pronto!

Pin it  Mac-head Finn at a year old: computer work is so tiring!

Bred in Germany originally for hunting in the early 19th century they were used by royalty for hunting large game such as bear and deer. Later they were used for hunting smaller animals like birds, rabbits, and foxes. At our place they hunt for all these, also astute and quick at catching lizards, mice and flies. They are indeed flexible!

Weimaraners are not an independent breed and love to be with their owner, never leaving them alone–aka, “Velcro dogs.” When asked, “Do you allow them to sleep on your bed with you?” I reply, ‘oh yes, but mostly they are under the covers,’ I note we are in good company with William Wegman who responds likewise.

Weims (for short) were made famous by this photographer William Wegman, born in 1943. Wegman originally intended to pursue a career as a painter–that is until he got his dog, Man Ray. The two began a long and fruitful collaboration. Man Ray is known in the art world for his endearing deadpan presence… along came many more weims after him.

Photo credit, William Wegman; Wegman’s dogs joyfully appeared in TV show Sesame Street (video)

Sure if dogs ruled, we’d be known as “dogs best friends…” But there is something more about dogs that can’t be pinned down… that deep bonding, “soulful” thing… captured in this video by Wendy Francisco.

 

My theory is that no one can empathize with us the way our dogs can due to their uncanny ability to read our body language and attune to our energy. Ask any dog trainer and they will tell you it’s far easier to teach a dog a behavior using a hand signal than using a spoken word. Why? Dogs are masters at reading our body language. For centuries, dogs have been carefully watching us to understand and anticipate our movements. This evolutionary effort got them the most food, helped avoid danger, and ensured they stayed on humans’ good side.

Pin it Tyler the weimaraner does the splits, Picture: YOGA DOGS /BARCROFT MEDIA

Honestly what wouldn’t your dog do for you? Evolutionary anthropologist Brian Hare speculates, “that the ability to read human body language was one of the traits selected when dogs were being domesticated,” (along with I’d say a severe “cuteness” factor). Those dogs best at reading people were more likely to be nurtured by humans and, therefore, be successful and reproduce. Scientifically this makes sense to me but still–does not explain that soulful unconditional (and unspeakable) bonding factor.

Pin it      Finn, Bella, mom and dad–just having fun

There are many kinds of service dogs, including guide dogs, hearing dogs, mobility dogs, seizure alert/response dogs, psychiatric service dogs, autism dogs, military dogs, drug and cancer sniffing dogs, the list goes on… I know many ex-vets that would not want to go on living without the dog (or dogs) that enable them to cope emotionally on a daily basis. Again one wonders… what can’t these creatures do? They certainly reach down into our souls the way no others can!

Pin it     Soldier adopts hero military dog that ‘saved her’ in Afghanistan

If you give your heart to a dog they will not break it. No, I don’t think that Dog is God spelled backwards, but pretty darn close.

How is your dog goofy, fun and creative? Please share!

Thank you for reading my post. My core message of everyone is creative resonates with people of all ages and walks of life. I invite all to become the best version of themselves in my recent book and at my website and find true meaning by pursing long term creative quests.

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Is Music Art?


A very strange instrument, “a marble melody,”
is currently captivating the internet. The artistic piece is called a “Wintergatan”–a musical instrument built using 2000 marbles!

It was built by Swedish musician named Martin Molin, 33, lead musician of Swedish band, Wintergarten. He created a wooden music box powered by marbles, yes marbles! He has accomplished this feat by employing pulleys, levers, and gears.

Molin turns a hand crank that moves 2,000 marbles around on tracks and through funnels (3000 parts!) The marbles then travel around and come in contact with other instruments like a kick drum, a bass guitar, marimba, cymbals, a vibraphone and bass. It can play ANY style of music.

Be prepared to be utterly delighted and inspired by these videos. 

The artist made this marvelous music-making machine in just 14 months. Find out how he did it in the short video below.


I ask you creatives’ to confirm, is music art? Please share your favorite quotes
.

Thank you for reading my post. My core message of everyone is creative resonates with people of all ages and walks of life. I invite all to become the best version of themselves in my recent book and at my website and find true meaning by pursing long term creative quests.

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How are you creative? Free Self-Assessment

“It turns out that creativity isn’t some rare gift to be enjoyed by the lucky few…
In too many of us it gets blocked. But it can be unblocked.
“And unblocking that creative spark can have far-reaching implications…” 
Tom Kelley

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There have been three centers of intelligence observed in humans dating back to Ancient Greece: Head (thinking), Heart (feeling) and Gut (intuitive doing). All three centers are active in each person, and are necessary for survival. However, we don’t access each of them equally because this is part of our brain’s conditioning. For example, I’m primarily a gut-based person. This means I operate mostly out of my gut reactions first, with support from my heart and/or head. Others describe themselves as primarily heart based, with support from their gut intuition and/or head. We all know thinkers who predominantly operate from the head center because their internal thinking is deeply valuable to them.

Clearly, our centers need each other. They independently and interdependently bring out our creativity. The slow hunch from our gut needs to be nourished. Even if it’s a flash of insight from the gut, we need the head center to prove it and the heart center to nourish it. To befriend our total experience is to accept all of our responses. To allow information to flow without judgment from all three centers and experience events, good or bad, painfully or joyfully, is to be truly alive.

Our task is to consider every moment, and our reaction to it, as potentially interesting, challenging, and revealing to our creative process. To be fully creative we need an open heart, open head, and open gut willingly befriending each other. We need to be aware when any of our centers are closed or blocked. We need self-confidence to solve problems or exploit ideas creatively. You absolutely can develop the self-belief and confidence in your own creativity by experimenting with and trusting in your three intelligence centers as THE sources of your creativity.

The key is to build an awareness of where your fire comes from regarding your ideas or problems. Does it originate from your heart, head, or gut intelligence center? In what proportion is the fire burning to solve problems from each center? From your heart/head/gut’s perspective is it 80/10/10 or 34/65/1 or 33/33/33? To facilitate this awareness, I offer a free three-center self-assessment on my website.

By discovering which center is your dominant, supportive and under-used center–you will build your awareness and confidence in your creative self.

Why a self-assessment and not some kind of creativity test? The answer is because creativity is not simply a set of personality traits or skills. It’s not familiarity with a set of behaviors that facilitate pre-fabricated strategies. Creative people are inventors; they invent both problems and solutions.

Creativity happens when a person with the right set of skills and knowledge (from the head, heart, and gut) invents or finds a meaningful problem that cannot be solved using any existing approach. The problem is solved creatively only by the person uniquely executing their own set of experiences (from the head, heart, and gut). Who knows who is going to hit the jackpot? Only people who have chosen to embark on this quest. I can’t “teach” creativity because it is a very personal quest. My quest is to facilitate your creative quest.

Thanks for reading my post. This is an excerpt taken from my recent book: The Three Sources of Creativity: Breakthroughs from your Head, Heart and Gut. My core message of everyone is creative resonates with people of all ages and walks of life. I invite all to become the best version of themselves at my website and find true meaning by pursing long term creative quests.

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Emotion, colors, Art & survival

Did you know there is a color wheel of emotions?

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Psychologist Robert Plutchik’s psycho-evolutionary theory of emotion is a very influential classification approach, shown above. He considered there to be eight primary emotions—anger, fear, sadness, disgust, surprise, anticipation, trust, and joy. Plutchik proposed these “basic” emotions are biologically primitive and have evolved to increase reproductive fitness over time. He argues each is a trigger of behavior for survival, such as fear inducing the fight/flee/ freeze response.

Plutchik’s theory considers all other emotions as mixed (or derivative states) of the eight primary emotions. In his model, all emotions vary in their degree of similarity to one another. Also, each emotion can exist in varying degrees of intensity or levels of arousal. He developed his “wheel of emotions” color wheel model in 1980.

His suggested eight primary “bipolar” emotions are: joy versus sadness; anger versus fear; trust versus disgust; and surprise versus anticipation are shown in the second circle. The inner circle shows a higher level of intensity of these emotions. The outer circle shows lower levels of intensity of these emotions. 

I think the metaphor of a color wheel is effective because like colors, primary emotions can be expressed at different intensities and can mix with one another to form different emotions.

Artists have been using colors to reveal emotions and moods for eons… feeling “blue” (down, depressed), light blue can suggest calm, seeing “red” (rage, danger, even pulsating life), “green” has been used to show “growth” and black used to show grief, evil, or penitence. Emotions and colors are closely tied together. Plutchik’s model is creative and enlightening. It shows feelings according to intensity (strongest in the center, weaker as the flower blooms outward). However, there are some emotions still missing.

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Ramiro Puentes is an outstanding artist, photographer, painter, sculptor and poet who uses color to express his moods. He’s risen from crippling poverty and used art to save himself and reimagine the streets of Skid Row in downtown LA, California.  Skid Row contains one of the largest stable populations (between 3,000 and 6,000) of homeless people in the United States.

Ramiro explains which colors he identifies with and why in this VERY INSPIRING video.

Our emotions have indeed evolved over time for our benefit and the survival of our species. The color wheel attempts to depict this (no model is perfect). The business world has certainly capitalized on our color/emotion connection in their marketing strategies. When we feel compelled to buy something, color can play a major role. Analytics company KISSmetrics created an interesting infographic on the science of how colors affect our purchases. Clearly, every one of these companies is seeking to trigger a very specific emotion that will result in our buying their product.

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Our heart’s higher purposes of “connectedness” and “relatedness” to others have helped us to survive and thrive (as Ramiro’s video shows). We’ve also learned the value of “transcendence.” There are times when certain emotions must be set aside so we can pursue a higher dimension or purpose. Artists and creatives have learned how to express whatever emotion they need to–in whatever colors–in order to transcend to the next level… and we all get to learn in the process.

What colors match your emotions? How do you express them creatively?  Are there some colors you naturally gravitate to? I know when i go to my closet and put on black, its because I’m mellow, peaceful (not depressed).

Thank you for reading my post. My core message of ‘everyone is creative’ resonates with people of all ages and walks of life. I invite all to become–the best version of themselves and find true meaning by pursing long term creative quests–in my recent book and website.

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Need inspiration? Milky Way is our AMAZING home

This is my third post continuing with the theme of finding inspiration to boost our own creativity. Please think about how these photos impact your head, heart and gut intelligence centers. How does each voice speak to you when you consider them?

When I need inspiration to kick-start creativity it helps me to look up… I am mesmerized when I think about riding in our Milky Way galaxy— home to 400 billion stars and our own moon, sun and solar system. Our spiral galaxy is nearly 120,000 light-years across and is a fairly typical barred spiral–with four major arms in its disk, at least one spur, and a newly discovered outer arm. The galactic centre, which is located about 26,000 light-years from Earth, contains at least one supermassive black hole (called Sagittarius A*).

The Milky Way began forming around 12 billion years ago and is part of a group of about 50 galaxies called the Local Group. The Andromeda Galaxy is part of this group as are numerous smaller galaxies, including the Magellanic Clouds. The Local Group itself is part of a larger gathering of galaxies called the Virgo Supercluster of galaxies. Is your head spinning yet? We belong to a ginormous neighborhood of galaxies.

Lets delight in some of the most amazing views of our Milky Way galaxy ever captured by amateur and professional astronomers… or “MW” as I affectionately say.

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Image of the night sky above Paranal, Chile on 21 July 2007, taken by ESO astronomer Yuri Beletsky. A wide band of stars and dust clouds, spanning more than 100 degrees, is seen. At the centre of the image, two bright objects are visible– the planet Jupiter and the star Antares.

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During a road trip in 2015 to a wedding Mark Lehrbass spent the night out of Snoqualmie Pass, WA. “Epic light pollution from Seattle’s suburbs, multiple wild fires, and the 90 interstate winding through the mountains made for some incredible lighting to frame Mt. Ranier and the Milky Way rising above it,” he said. All I can say is WOW…

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Here MW glows over an old windmill in this stunning image shot by an amateur astronomer and astrophotographer Sean Parker. This (14-shot panoramic view) is over Paulden, Ariz. The planet Jupiter, bright star Sirius, constellation Orion and open star cluster–the Pleaides–can also be seen toward the right in the photo.

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In 2014, astrophotographer Shreenivasan Manievannan photographed MW arching over a rock arch in Joshua Tree National Park, California.

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The Milky Way and green airglow are captured over the Isle of Wight in this image taken by Chad Powell on Oct. 4, 2013.

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MW is seen in all its glory, as well as, in the lower right, the Large Magellanic Cloud. Credit: ESO/S. Guisard

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The bright Perseid meteor streaked through skies in Hungary on August 8, 2010. In the foreground is the Church of St. Andrew ruin, with bright Jupiter dominating the sky to its right. Two galaxies lie in the background: our own MW, and the faint smudge of the more distant Andromeda Galaxy just above the ruin’s leftmost wall.

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A view of MW toward the constellation Sagittarius (including the Galactic Center) as seen from the Black Rock Desert, Nevada). The bright object on the right is Jupiter, just above Antares. Photo by Steve Jurvetson.

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MW arching from the Cerro Paranal, Chile, on the left, and sinking into the Antofagasta’s night lights. The bright object in the center, above the Milky Way is Jupiter. The Magellanic Clouds are visible on the left side, and a plane has left a visible trace on the right, along the Vista enclosure. Photo by Bruno Gilli/ESO.

This detailed artist’s impression shows the structure of MW below, including the location of the spiral arms and other components such as the bulge. This image includes the most recent mapping of the shape of the central bulge from survey data from ESO’s VISTA telescope at the Paranal Observatory, credit NASA/JPL-Caltech/ESO/R. Hurt.

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Where is our sun relative to our gigantic MW neithborhood?

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Yes our sun is located close to the “Orion Spur.” In my own sky above Santa Fe, New Mexico–I can always depend on finding Orion! The constellation is located on the celestial equator and visible throughout the world, named after a Greek hunter in mythology.

Lastly photographer Antoni Cladera shows why “shooting the Milky Way is contagious” with photo below.

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Our Milky Way is just one of countless galaxies in the universe. Our view of the universe is expanding. Less than a century ago, astronomers thought that our Milky Way galaxy of stars might be the whole universe. Today, we can observe the splendor of galaxies far beyond our own. We can see the estimated 100 billion galaxies that make up our “observable universe.”

We are all creative creatures living in a God ordained, ever-creative, and expanding universe. How is your head, heart and gut inspired by these photos in distinctive ways? Which is your favorite and why?

Thanks for reading my post. I am an organizational and business consultant living in the mountains of Santa Fe, New Mexico with my husband and dogs. My core message of everyone is creative resonates with people of all ages and walks of life. I invite all to become the best version of themselves in my book and find true meaning by pursing long term creative quests.

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Looking for more creative inspiration?

I am continuing my theme of “inspiration for more creativity” from my last blog. There may never be more unique artistry created than in animal’s eyes. These detailed photos of animal’s eyes are captured using macro photography. We can try to match the colors and details of nature’s diversity–but can we ever truly be as successful? Maybe not, but we sure can try! Be listening to your: “heart voice,” “head voice” and “gut voice” as you allow each photo to speak to you.

Special thanks to Suren Manvelyan, a professional Armenian photographer who specializes in animal eyes (some of his photos are shown below). His work is awesome!

MANDATORY BYLINE: PIC FROM JOEL SARTORE/NAT GEO STOCK/CATERS - (PICTURED: The eye of a Veiled Chameleon.) - What a sight! These are the eye opening images which capture the beauty in the eyes of the animal kingdom. The colourful pictures show the intricate differences and delicate detail of a variety of animal eyes. From the eye of a tiger or a tree frog to the eyes a penguin or a parrotfish, the close up images were taken by a series of photographers who certainly dont have a lack of vision SEE CATERS COPY Pic taken 13/11/2006.

Eye of a chameleon (National Geographic)

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Cayman eye (alligator/crocodile family) by Suren Manvelyan

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Llama eye, by Suren Manvelyan

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Thornback-ray fish by Suren Manvelyan
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Gurnard fish by Suren Manvelyan
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Iguana eye
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Tarsier (nocturnal primate SE Asia) http://www.avivhadar.com/

My kitty pet : Shu! Hope that brings me good luck! Also is quite hard to shot a macro picture to a cat's eye, they never stand still!

Domestic cat eye by Gabriel Burns

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Leopard blue eye
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Peacock mantis shrimp eye by Steve De Neef
And which animal in our animal kingdom has THE MOST EYES?

Common Name: lined chiton, Scientific Name: Tonicella lineata, Magnification: 1.2x

Chiton eyes by David Liittschwager

The answer might surprise you– its the chiton, a type of mollusk. It is an ocean dweller and has thousands of eyes embedded in shells on their backs. Most scallop species also have dozens to hundreds of eyes, as do ark clams and giant clams.

I don’t know about you but I am incredibly inspired by the creativity of these animal eyes, each exquisitely unique. It is a privilege to experience the extreme biodiversity of our God given planet earth! Next time you see any kind of interesting animal, take a closer look at their eyes… they are bound to inspire you in surprising ways. The neon amber eyes of my weimaraners certainly do.

How are you inspired by these animal’s eyes? Which one(s) inspire you the most– from your head, heart and gut perspective?

Thanks for reading my post. I am an organizational and business consultant living in the mountains of Santa Fe, New Mexico with my husband and dogs. My core message of everyone is creative resonates with people of all ages and walks of life. I invite all to become the best version of themselves in my book and find true meaning by pursing long term creative quests.

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Looking for creative inspiration?

Sometimes when I get blocked creatively I look around for inspiration. I found two artists who got me moving. The first is Dutch artist Theo Jansen’s living and breathing sculptures — I must say this utube of his astonishing work is one of the most eerily awe-inspiring things I’ve seen in awhile! I think that’s because it stimulates all three of my intelligence centers: head, heart and gut. He calls his art “the Strandbeests.” These walking sculptures are made of lightweight plastic tubing, that “feed” off wind-power and spend their natural lives frolicking in the tide-lines of northern beaches! Yes, this is “gut” creativity at its best!

Jansen’s designed intake pipes detect when his creatures venture too far into dunes or water, causing them to careen the other way to keep themselves safe. Simply brilliant creations!

The other artist whom inspired me this week is Thomas Dambo. He makes BIG art projects from trash. Most of us dive into clean pools, he dives into dumpsters around Copenhagen, Denmark. He has fun with trash and inspires others to use recycled materials for works of art.

In 2015 Thomas Dambo and his team made the recycled sculpture Simon Selfmade in the town of Tilst outside of Aarhus, Denmark. Unfortunately a big hurricane hit Aarhus shortly after, and Simon was completely destroyed. A 14 year old girl named Anine was really sad about losing Simon– so she created a Facebook page to raise funds to have Simon rebuilt, which she accomplished in only four days.

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Sculpture: Simon and Anine.

The new sculpture is now finished (see video for the process) and includes a new friend to keep Simon company. The name of his new friend is– of course– Anine.

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All of Dambo’s sculptures are made solely from local scrapwood and recycled materials, some are placed in hidden locations like Oscar under the bridge. This invites viewers to go on a treasure hunt, to see both the sculpture and hidden gems in nature.

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Oscar under the bridge is made from scrapwood and broken pallets from local industries. Here are a few more of Dambo’s unique sculptures.

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Not only are Dambo’s sculptures made of recycled materials, but as you can see, they are interactive (provoke our gut center), always inviting us to play! And–of course–play stimulates creativity.

How do these works stimulate your creativity–from your head, heart and gut’s perspective?

Thanks for reading my post. I am an organizational and business consultant living in the mountains of Santa Fe, New Mexico with my husband and dogs. My core message of everyone is creative resonates with people of all ages and walks of life. I invite all to become the best version of themselves in my new book and find true meaning by pursing long term creative quests.

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Love Copper? Mezmerizing pictures show how it is mined

These pictures help us comprehend the scale of open-pit extraction with aerial photographs. These pits are dug by machines– “bucket-wheel excavators”, nearly five times the size of a titanosaur (largest dinosaur); they rip up the surface and gradually descend. Once the copper is extracted, waste products stream out as tailings, creating snaking tributaries that oxidize psychedelically in open air. These excavators leave ledges as they go down, creating a succession of ‘‘benches”. The Chino Mine, in my home state of N.M., has been excavated for over 100 years and is two miles across and 1,350 feet down. It’s an amphitheater built around an abyss, very popular on TripAdvisor, with comments like “you’ve got to be kidding!!!”

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Disbelief seems to be the universal response to open-pit mines. Photographer Edward Burtynsky says, ‘‘I look for the biggest mines in the world.’’ These photographs, shot in Arizona (below) and New Mexico in 2012 are some of the continent’s largest copper mines. The Morenci Mine (below), will produce 900 million pounds of copper every year for the next five years.

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The earth is reshaped radically. Burtynsky reveals how surreal, multicolored, carved up and drastic the newly patterned landscape is. Like it or not, this is how we get our copper that serves our hi-tech world!

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Welcome to the Industrial Revolution, 150 years in the making. This is part of how we have reshaped our planet Earth.

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There’s copper in our mobile phones, PC’s (“average” desktop computer has about 4.85 pounds of copper), appliances, cars, and inside the walls of our homes. ‘‘If you feel revulsion to this landscape,’’ this photographer says, ‘‘you should have a revulsion to your whole life.’’

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If we are awed by these pictures, you can only imagine how the excavator driver feels as he or she descends into the deep and deeper abyss.

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There may be no getting to the bottom of this... how we feel about it and at the same time our appetite (the world’s) for more technology is insatiable… which requires more copper extraction and devastation to the earth (depending on how you see it).

Thank you for reading my post. I share a story about how our community managed the “fracking company” when they came to our town insisting on “fracking undeveloped potential” in our neighborhoods (an unregulated activity at the time). We collaboratively worked together to create a state of the art oil & gas ordinance for our county. You can read about that in my book.

I am an organizational and business consultant living in the mountains of Santa Fe, New Mexico with my husband and dogs. My core message of everyone is creative resonates with people of all ages and walks of life. I invite all to become the best version of themselves and find true meaning by pursing long term creative quests.

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