The face of your muse

by Starla J. King on November 16, 2011

The most amazing parts of us show up when (we think) we are off camera. That’s why I still agree to do an occasional stint as event photographer — for the delight of catching people outside of their poses.

The free expression just before retreating into a pose CLICK!

The rich interaction between group members in the pre-pose mass confusion CLICK! and the post-pose scattering… like seeds blown off a dandelion puff CLICK!

The “hope I look good” smile slipping easily into a full-face grin of joy CLICK!

The placed-just-right arm around a shoulder turning into a feels-just-right embrace CLICK!

A stolen moment of quiet reflection CLICK!

A shy flush of the cheeks CLICK!

A tear, a skip, a flash of anger CLICK! CLICK! CLICK!

With each CLICK! I silently offer thanks for the split-second gift I just witnessed —  feeling part thief, part invited honored guest in these sacred snapshots of the truest moments of life — and resolve to honor the implicit trust given me as photo-documentarian.

Because I recognize that those times in between poses are the glimpses of our muse … our creative soul … the innermost inspirational part of us that shows up, lights up, and finally speaks up when we are free enough to express our less filtered selves.

And that speaking up?

That’s the invisible force that directs our pen on paper, our paintbrush on canvas, our fingers on the keyboard.

That’s the force that lets us hear the music that comes out as composition for piano, guitar, full orchestra.

That’s the shared mental image that comes to us in a coaching call, the crystal clear answer that suddenly appears in our mind’s eye, the nudge to pick up the phone and call a friend who somehow needed to hear our voice just at that moment.

Whether a momentary flash or a weeks-long ongoing outpouring of creative genius, the muse remains the same it’s our willingness to access the muse… our insistence on keeping the way clear for inspiration… that changes.

So the real challenge then in accessing our muse — our creativity — is not in the adding of pressure and demand for performance and production… it’s in the taking away…it’s in the unlayering of the things that block our creative energy’s access path from our  inherent internal knowing to expression to the external world (and ourselves).

I know, I know… this sounds rather like some impossible artsy-esoteric vagary (look it up… I just did 🙂 ), but after years of experience, I can tell you this… many of the most effective ways of accessing your muse are (almost ridiculously) PRACTICAL.

Turns out inspiration loves practicality.

And I have created something to prove to you… well, really, for you to prove to yourself… that practicality is a direct path to creativity. I have created a 7-day self-serve eCourse called Courting Your Muse: A Practical Approach to Creative Progressavailable starting MONDAY, November 21.   Just a few finishing touches, then you get to experience what I’m talking about.

I will post registration information all over the place on Monday, but go ahead and sign up for the OutWrite Living eNewsletter (right side of this page) to get direct email notice with all the important registration details … plus the usual dose of inspiration!

Ready to get a head start on finding your muse?   Consider yourself the event photographer of your own life. Catch yourself in the moments you think you’re “off camera” and greet your internal muse with a knowing wink and a smile.

And if I happen to see you in that moment, thank you… I love seeing the you that shows up off camera, in between poses.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

NJD November 17, 2011 at 10:41 am

Only a true creative can capture creative spark moments in brilliantly creative words and images. What a roller coaster rush of a creative ride here. Or was it more of a slinky ride into the depth of my soul.


Starla J. King November 17, 2011 at 11:17 am

NjD, The muse shows up and we all get on for the ride. And in those beautiful moments when one muse sees another, they play together in soul depths. Thank you for that. xo


Ginny November 17, 2011 at 3:24 pm

“So the real challenge then in accessing our muse — our creativity — is not in the adding of pressure and demand for performance and production… it’s in the taking away…it’s in the unlayering of the things that block our creative energy’s access path from our inherent internal knowing to expression to the external world (and ourselves).”

Ohhh, LOVE this! Such truth. Some days I’m better at unlayering and unblocking – but sometimes I’m so far from where I’d like to be with this. I need more unlayering and unblocking…


Starla J. King November 17, 2011 at 3:37 pm

Ginny, hi!!

It’s surprising at times how difficult it can to be to unlayer and unblock, isn’t it? Especially in a society (and typical methodology) that asks us to PUSH PUSH PUSH and MAKE THINGS HAPPEN.

The thing is, when we do the work to unlayer and unblock, what is able to express itself freely is then so much more than we ever imagined!

Sounds like my new eCourse could be perfect for you… and just fyi, I do 1-1 creativity coaching if you would like to do some more intensive work around this unlayering/unblocking. (Website will be updated with that offering within the next day or so).

Wishing you courage and easy access to your muse today.


Angel November 17, 2011 at 9:56 pm

Gin’s here too!! What fabulous company I keep!! You *all* rock 🙂

Funny… what Gin said was actually my favorite part too! Go figure 😉

I am so excited you’re putting this out there… sounds incredible and I cannot wait to learn more about it and help you spread the word!

I believe that women picking up our pieces and pulling all of ourselves together (including and *especially* our inherent creativity!) is what will not only save us all (in whatever ways you choose to think about this) but also propel us far beyond where we think we can go.

Pure magic.

Bring it on, chicky…!


Starla J. King November 20, 2011 at 5:19 pm

Angel, why yes, you DO keep fabulous company! 🙂

Love that you and Gin both were grabbed by the same part of this post!

You know, your comment helps me realize that one part of my mission/purpose in facilitating the access of personal creativity is to change the perception that creativity is OPTIONAL and somehow a lesser way of being and doing. As you said it is “what will save us all…”

Love the work you’re doing in that same realm! xo


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