I’m writing this post while bored.
It’s, relatively, not an unpleasant day. I’m outside in the Florida heat, but with a breeze and a stomach full of salted cashews and filtered water.
And as I sit here, I’m thinking about boredom and creativity. It’s an easy test to find an artist: make a person bored. See what they do with what is around them.
They say, and I’m not sure who the original “they” is, that a child–at heart–is an artist. Well, I guess if my little boredom hypothetical is a good test, I’ve confirmed this idea.
Because a child, eventually, given enough time, will make art from everything around them. Pots, pans, they make music: even if no one but the child likes the sound. And walls, when it comes to crayons, make for a bigger canvas–a more robust and tactile canvas–than any flimsy piece of printer paper.
And even when we are older, the same holds. With artists at least.
Every time I feel like life is too easy, like my time to chill is too great, I’ll add another project. Some might call that being a workaholic–even if my work is creation–and perhaps it is. But perhaps that’s not a bad thing. Just like the kid with the crayon, I’m sitting here with a breeze and fluttering leaves and the somewhat muted sounds of the world, and with this word processor on my phone: I make the boredom into something that might have meaning.
Which is kind of cool when you think about it. Maybe all that issue with creation some people have isn’t a lack of inspiration. Maybe it’s they’ve never been properly bored. Maybe, just maybe, they need to go back to a mindset–even if only for a little while—before entertainment without limit was available, and sit on a simple sidewalk with a box of chalk and try for something to ease the awful, terrible, helpful, boredom.