Helen James [indicamama]
How and why did you begin to be creative?
I think I was born that way, or at least very quickly developed my inquisitive creative side.
A huge influence in my life as a child was my Dad, who used to make innovative toys to stimulate the senses of disabled children, way back in the 70's.
I loved spending time in his workshop watching over him as he was making these amazing boxes, that when touched would make sounds, lights and texures to feel and stimulate the user.
I was amazed that just by putting together some wood, coloured plastics, and a few tiny lights he could create something that to a child looked quite magical, yet so simple.
Ever since I have been interested in all things creative and I think it shows in my work more so now than ever before.
Your mind is your work tool. How do you take care of it?
Im not sure that I do, I see my mind as a sponge into which I absorb as much information and new ideas as I can.
Admittedly this does lead to overload sometimes. Its time then time to get those ideas Id like to develop out of my head and down on to paper and let the rest drift until I am ready to think back to them again, when the time is right.
We all have an huge capacity for storing knowledge its just a case of how much an individual wants to take on board.
I guess I am looking after my mind by feeding it with nowledge, rather than letting those wonderful cells dwindle and fade with age. I hope I never stop or think I know enough. There is always something new to learn and I do like to learn something new everyday.
How do you avoid repeating yourself, or falling into formula? How do you stay fresh?
Life is a series of repeats, but each time I make it my mission to take another point of view or stance on the matter to keep it fresh. I often find that in doing so I may discover other new ideas, which in turn develop into other areas of my work or life.
Routine can be stabilising and important at times, I like to keep some areas of my life stable and calm to allow the creative side of me to florish and fly freely, keeping my mind fresh and alert to new ideas.
Do you have a ritual like retiring to a lonely place from time to time to cleanse your mind?
I clear my mind in many different ways depending on circumstances. Often not needing to go to any where special to do so. It could be something as simple as walking away from what I was doing, make a cuppa, and take it outside to enjoy some different sights and smells.
I find aromatic plants instantly calming, and have planted a great deal around the house so that when I walk or sit outside I can simply brush by a lavender, rosemary or one of the other many wonderful scents I have dotted around to take in the scent.
While I was at college I used to enjoy sciving off occasionally to sit in the nearby garden for the blind, which was full of the most wonderful scented and textured plants. I would often be content to sit a while enjoying the freedom and space, then before long I was freshed and ready to get my notepad out jotting down great ideas and solutions to whatever project it was I was working on at the time.
What cultural sources do you draw from the most?
I am English surrounded by English culture with all its eccentricities. However, I do find myself drawing from a great deal of other cultural influences depending on what it is I am working on at the time.
Who have your teachers been?
Lifes lessons have come to me from a great deal of teachers, many of whom have unknowingly taught me my most valuable lessons along the way.
"To give birth to ideas." Is this only an expression, or are there really parallels between giving birth and creativity?
I have given birth to two wonderful children and I most definately agree that we can 'give birth to ideas' in fact when I started my own business it was like giving birth. Infact on my first work folder I wrote my 'company name' Born: Oct 2005.
My initial idea was a small seed, which has grown with my careful and loving guidance much like a parent does a child.
Ideas go through happy and sad times, sometimes frustrating times as new areas which need to be developed and explored arrive. Parents use creativity to inspire and guide their child safely through lifes ups and downs much in the same way as an idea needs to be nurtured and developed through to maturity.
Is there a website, blog or social media link where we can see more about your project and/or yourself?
My 100% Vegan toxin free skin care company:
Twitter: @indicamama Tweeting for Innocent Oils
Innocent Oils Blog: www.innocentoils.blogspot.com
Find my arty side here: