#30Grids: Days 11-17
Around Here: July 2021

From the Archives: What Mister Rogers Taught Me

This post was originally published in August of 2012.

I recently watched the auto-tune remix from one of my favorite childhood TV shows, Mr. Rogers Neighborhood:

I had forgotten how much of the show was about using your imagination.  I actually teared up a little watching this video.  The lessons of kindness, courtesy, responsibility, and respect that Mr. Rogers espoused on his show, not to mention his encouragement to dream and imagine and play make believe, have stuck with me into adulthood.  

A day or two after watching the video I was still hearing two phrases rattling through my head.

Two notions that I wholeheartedly agree with.  I would say that at least 50% of my job and 85% of my creative time is based on these two ideas.  Here are some examples:

It's good to be curious.

  • I constantly ask myself, "What if...?"  What if I combined these two colors?  What if that was a house instead of an arm?  What if I covered that part up?
  • I like to think of myself as an explorer of art supplies.  Sure, I'll read up on a product, but I like to see what I can do with it -- how it works in my hand and in combination with my other supplies.
  • I like to try new things.  Be it techniques, products, art styles, or crafts, it's all interesting to me!
  • When I see something I like I often think about how it was made or sometimes simply why I like it.  Articulating why you like something can be a powerful tool to help you find your style and create projects you love.

You can grow ideas in the garden of your mind.

  • As much as I love blog hopping and spending hours on Pinterest, I find that I'm actually much more productive when I stay away from the computer.  It allows me time to grow my own ideas.
  • I think the thing that is so unique about each of us is the way that our minds work.  I try to embrace my own quirky oddness by running with every bad idea that comes rushing through my brain because I never know where I might end up!
  • I am a daydreamer and a doodler and I have the sketchbooks to prove it!  Many of those dreams and doodles make it into my finished artwork.  You can learn to sketch in my online class "Sketchbook Habit."
  • I indulge in a lot of alone time.  I need time by myself in order to sort out my feelings and my thoughts and grow new ideas for art.  

How about you?  Do these two phrases resonate for you?