I used to feel like I needed to keep moving to stay inspired. So, in the spring of 2018, I took a solo road trip out west. I visited my brother in Colorado and then stayed a few days in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
On this trip I felt so free. I remembered the importance of going out on my own, which always makes me discover new things about myself and remember what I love – like finding the perfect little tea shop and sketching in their garden at sunset and wandering back into the city on foot rather than taking a shuttle and following the well-known path.
Of course, being out of the studio also helps push my creativity in new directions. I love drawing on the road – creating in my little sketchbook.
I use a black, water-soluble pencil and water with a thin brush to smudge out my lines and add shading. I keep it all in a little shoulder bag with my water bottle and a few snacks. It’s the perfect thing for painting on the go. I found so much magic hiking through canyons and visiting the spots that Georgia O’Keeffe painted at Ghost Ranch and Abiquiu Lake.
While I loved getting back in touch with my free spirit and filling up with new inspirations, I found myself missing home.
Then the other day I saw a family of rabbits running and jumping in my backyard and I was inspired to paint these two little magical creatures together.
They represent the importance of connectedness and that feeling of home.
It’s not something I consciously started painting, but I stepped back from this piece and saw the second little character peeking out from the layers. I wanted them both to be some sort of huggable animal – but different from one another, sort of a combination of all animals together.
There is nothing like traveling and experiencing new things to reawaken inspiration.
But I finally realized it’s not always necessary to leave home to find and feel my inspiration. Sometimes it takes being away for awhile to remember to be still and slow down.