The openness to allow those unremarkable events to fill our soul with remarkable delight. And the audacity to put them wax and carry our truth to market.
Schulz, as an example, was a fine draftsman. No doubt about it. He couldn’t have created the most popular comic strip in history by having a subpar illustrating ability.
But his highest talent, colleagues say, was his capacity to find inspiration in life’s daily occurrences that most people took for granted. To stay forever attuned to the everyday absurdity of ordinary experiences.
That’s why the characters still endure to this day. It was the unusual receptivity of their creator’s eyes.
How do we train ourselves to do the same? How do get that muscle all quivering and veiny and oiled up?
A good place to start is our own backyard. Quite literally, in fact.
I’m reminded of a police mystery novel whose protagonists said, a good cop depends on his sense of inappropriateness. What doesn’t fit? What’s out of the ordinary? What’s the wrong type of face or car for this neighborhood? That’s how he knows his beat. A longstanding habituation to place.
And so, each one of us can strengthen that muscle by simply stepping out the front door, walking down our street and start searching for things that don’t fit. Looking around in the course of a typical day for examples of inconvenience.
That’s where art begins. Hiding behind the unremarkable.
And from that place of exquisite ordinariness, beauty and joy and transcendence ensue.
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