Thursday, March 31, 2011

Being Inquisitive

The whole point of this blog is to exercise my writing muscle, by writing about a variety of topics, by writing in a variety of styles, by exploring my written voice, and by thinking about what I want to share with the world. I often think about writing throughout the week, and wait for something to stick. I make a mental post-it note, and let it travel with me as I live my day. I roll the words over and over in my mind, composing sentences, thoughts, or phrases. Then I start to fill in the cracks, and complete the thoughts in order to convey something clearly.

I realize that I write better and more expressively when I am describing something, talking about something I love, or conveying my thoughts about my favorite things, such as a cabinet of curiosities. So my current idea is to pull all those things out of the woodwork, and thoroughly flesh out the things that have inspired me for years. There are many things in the realm of art and design that I continually revisit in order to replenish the creative ‘well’. I also enjoy a great quote, poem, movie, or song. Revisiting a place, exploring somewhere new, and adventures are also some of the most inspiring and encouraging things. Of course you can never quite predict what will appear here on my blog (well because half the time I don’t know until I start typing), hence the name haphazard.

This week the phrase, the importance of being inquisitive has stuck in my mind, an absolutely perfect segue thought to begin exploring things that inspire me. Anyway.

Curiosity rules my life. If there is one thing that would almost define me, that would be it. When something is so innate and ingrained, you cannot imagine life in it’s absence. What would it be like to not be ridiculously curious about everything around me? I don’t know, what is it like to not have an arm? Those questions are one and the same for me, meaning I have no faint idea of what it is like.

Being insatiably inquisitive about the world around you is the best way to learn. You don’t have to have information shoved down your throat because you are already thirsty for knowledge and experience. 
It's hard to be in class sometimes and have people constantly complain about whatever we happen to be learning. I have gotten through school thus far because I always find something, anything, in any subject matter that somehow intrigues me. I know that I'm not going to be a geologist, but it's fascinating how many amazing rocks and gems there are. I don't plan on being a doctor, but medical stuff is so interesting to learn about! I could go on and on. 

As an interior design student, I have to exercise my creative muscle constantly. Curiosity and creativity are infinitely intertwined. You take in, and in, and in, and then you can just explode with ideas. After sketching and exploring ideas for my designs I can feel just empty, so afterward I have to go on a design website, look at an interesting magazine, check the news to see what's happening in the world, read a book, take a walk, hangout with a friend, or do anything not necessarily design related to replenish the creative well. 

If you do not care about curiosity and therefore the world, I urge and implore you to take a chance. Explore something, get out of your comfort zone, eat something your normally wouldn't, go somewhere you've always wanted to go. People who never do anything cool are not really curious about the world, because if they were they would get off their butt and actively pursue something. I know many people have ways that they replenish their creative wells, and ways to encourage curiosity, here's some of mine.

Ways to exercise your curiosity:
1. Journal. You will start to learn how to describe your life and it will force you to explore the details.
2. Draw/Sketch. Taking a quick photograph just does not compare to studying the contours of a person, the shape of a feather, the mass of an orange, or how light plays across an object.
3. Take Walks. I grew up taking walks with my mother and siblings, and never realized how important they were until now I think. Learning to enjoy seeing the world at a slow pace takes time. Go outside and enjoy the fresh air, go see the world. I walk almost the same (and quickest route since I like to sleep in) route to the bus and my classes in the morning.  Along the way I always try to notice one thing I have never seen before.
4. Have a Conversation. Sit down with someone who studies a subject you know nothing about, and ask them questions. Get to know someone who is completely different than you.
5. Invest in People. Similar to the one above, when you take time to have conversations with people, and find out about their life you will always learn something!

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