I am wrestling with making work at the moment – too many ideas means that I can’t settle comfortably to one thing. I jump around from one idea to the next, not really sure whether things are working or not. It’s a state I’ve been in before – I just have to keep going and remember wise words that I read somewhere (sorry I can’t remember where) and that is that if you know what you are doing you are not being creative.


Walking always helps – often ideas occur to me or connections are made as I walk myself into a meditative state. However, even though sometimes there is revelation, more often than not there is silence.


A couple of days ago I went down to the beach in-between rainy showers for a much needed breath of fresh air. The tide was coming in. Watching it flood over the sand flats and fill the dips and hollows in an inexorable movement forward is mesmerising. I find I have the need to map its coming in – to measure its flow. A quick line made in the sand with my foot marks a spot a few metres back from the edge. Waves ripple forwards in surges, back and forth, advancing and retreating, until the line is reached. It makes me think of my grandfather who always said that the seventh wave is bigger. I count the waves. This piece of folklore is not scientifically correct but there are occasional bigger waves and they seem to push the tide further in.



Watching and counting the waves I start to notice. The more I look, the more I notice and the more I make connections to what I see and what I think. Crossing lines of foamy water relate to small line drawings I have been doing recently. Tiny bubbles make me think of a different way of making holes in cloth. A small shred of bladder wrack that floats in connects to some salt and sand pieces I have been making and suggests something new.


A breath of fresh air has cleared my head and luckily this time I have found the impetus to go on.



3 thoughts on “Waves

  1. turtlemoonimpressions

    I can soooo relate to this post! I need to push myself to get to the ocean again. Now that I’m more inland and summer traffic is the biggest deterrent, I have to make that effort. I need to walk on a beach! It always makes me feel clear headed.

  2. Diana Farmer

    I love your comments about the waves, especially those coming in, some bigger and some smaller. Being at the beach fills me up, renews me. It feels very basic, connecting with my early childhood memories near the sea.
    As yet I haven’t been able to use the sea as inspiration for my work maybe in the future, I am still drawn to flowers, the sea seems so much harder, where to start!
    I enjoy your blog and loved hearing you talk about your process at the Winchester Embroidery Guild.

  3. shemann

    I have been there mentally. My mind becomes a jumble of ideas- a state of unrest, the beach or nature brings me back and quiets my mind so I can focus.


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