A wonderful idea befell my soul and creative side and awoke my quietened mind this evening; the question came up between myself and my sister about whether or not a community ... could be anyone's community, but in particular, a local one(!) could need a community space for creativity. Could it be done? Could a space be found and would creatives and idealists, freelancers, writers, workshop creators and entrepreneurs come a flocking?
Well, my mind was alive with excitement. I am always one for ideas and know that the simple version of doing one thing at a time is perhaps the more succinct way to do things, but I am a star, glinting in the spectacular glare of a million ideas at once. I am resourceful, however, that does help and like a typical creative or entrepreneur, I enjoy the ideas process ... then comes the difficult part, but I have a determined nature, so that also helps at these times!
So, this evening, I found myself in my kitchen, enjoying the jasmine and bergamot aroma of the soaps I'd enjoyed making earlier today, dreamily drifting into the air from the bag I'd got my collection in, as I sat by my Mac and flip chart. So, I began to list all the ideas of the groups, workshops, studio space, rehearsal space, etc I could think of that might use a creative space and felt very proud of my long list filling the large flip chart sheet and I wondered about creativity and the feeling you need around you in order to achieve those dreams and ideas. What does a creative want from their space?
For myself, it's comfort, but I can seemingly write anywhere. It's wonderful to sit in a cafe and enjoy the hub-bub of people around you, but on occasion, the sound and conversations, although great for ideas, can become overwhelming and distracting. On the other hand, most of my writing happens in the middle of the night, when the house is quiet, the children and hubby are sleeping and the dogs and cats are snuggled up by my feet, or on occasion, right beside me, Roobarb, dear Tabby cat!
Does it matter as a creative to have things totally organised all of the time? Is it necessary to have bold colours, or calm surrounding you through the process? Is the comfort of a homely surrounding something you aspire to as you write, or paint with the soothing sounds of Mary Anne Hobbs on 6 Music in the background, or do you need silence, the old faithful, allowing your thoughts and ideas to spill out onto the page? What makes that space the space you look forward to being in to be able to come up with all your amazing thoughts and aspirations? How important is it? It's something that I'm genuinely interested in myself, as this idea of a creative community speaks to me on a higher level.
The thought of a place you could go to where you know you will meet like-minded individuals, where there is no shortage of workshops, a space for you to work in, whether it be hot-desking office space or a rehearsal space for your band, where you knew there was a decent kitchen and a sofa to relax in, once you'd finished going through the set. A space for gentle events, talks and communities to come together for coffee mornings, a space to chat through ideas, have meetings, conferences or to study.
I know there are your standard community buildings, for a number of things, but I'm talking about something with that extra creative draw, something special to inspire and bring out that passion, that novel you've been meaning to write for a million years, that place you wanted to run an intimate self help group, a flower-arranging workshop, a brainstorming meeting, a home educator's set of workshops, some study time for your students, a retreat.
Please leave your comments below and let me know what you feel really makes a creative space? What does it mean for you and how important is it to get it right? Is it simple and classic, calm and insightful or bold and brassy, loud and assured? Is it the familiar that's necessary or a new space every time? Is it somewhere surrounded by beautiful views, or will a room with enough light and a sense of calm work best? What does creativity mean to you and what sort of space would you need to allow that creativity to flow? Answers on a postcard ... or below! Happy creative blessings to you all!