Creative Spark – Seeing with Fresh Eyes

This spark is a quote that invites you to look at something with fresh eyes:

The easier an experience, or the more entrenched, or the more familiar, the fainter our sensation of it becomes. This is true of chocolate and marriages and hometowns and narrative structures. Complexities wane, miracles become unremarkable, and if we’re not careful, pretty soon we’re gazing out at our lives as if through a burlap sack. …. I open my journal and stare out at the trunk of the umbrella pine and do my best to fight off the atrophy that comes from seeing things too frequently. I try to shape a few sentences around this tiny corner of Rome; I try to force my eye to slow down. A good journal entry—like a good song, or sketch, or photograph—ought to break up the habitual and lift away the film that forms over the eye, the finger, the tongue, the heart. A good journal entry ought be a love letter to the world.

Anthony Doerr from Four Seasons in Rome

We challenge you to find an ordinary item and portray it in a manner that helps you see it in a new way – describe it, draw it, or take a picture. Send us the results at We will post as many as we can.

Queen Anne’s Lace revisited using filters from Brush Stroke

Enjoy this contribution to Creative Sparks, a feature of our Community Conversation about sharing sources of inspiration. See the original post for ways to add a spark.