Saturday, April 05, 2014

A different sort of creativity

Last week, I was up in the charming town of Port Townsend, Washington to visit my friends Paige and Alan.  As always when I'm around Paige, I appreciate the amazing and unique nature of her creativity.  It's clear to me that creativity can come in so many different forms, but in Paige I see something I don't see in many people.  She has the ability to see things and put them together in unusual ways that instantly make sense.  The connections between them seem obvious once she makes them, but I'm often struck by how I'd never have put things together the way she does. Ever.

That art of arranging things is a subtle thing, too, because it's a sort of invisible creativity.  It's easy to take for granted, because once it's applied, it looks, well, natural and effortless. I suppose that set decorators and photostylists and window decorators have to develop this sort of skill.  But I've known Paige for almost 30 years, and she has always had it.  It's so normal to her that she doesn't think of it as anything special.  We've begun to call it "making vignettes" -- she'll bring something home, put it with a few other items that connect in her head, and voila, it's a new and charming vignette. 

So visiting her, and seeing the fun stuff around her house, and visiting the booths in the antique mall where she sells vintage collectibles, is always a visual feast. As usual, I came away wishing I'd taken more photographs and made more sketches.  But the truth is that I could be housebound at Paige's for a month and there wouldn't be time to see and sketch and photograph all of the interesting things she has collected.

I think I need to go back.