Your Environment Is A Muse?

Does sunlight help or hurt a zombie novel?

Do rainy nights enhance love scenes?

Will snow make turn that next art project into a masterpiece?

I often wonder about the effects of our environment on our creativity. Right now, pure beams of sunlight are pouring through my window and warming up my skin. The sky is a rich blue canvas, and the smell of what little trees exist in New York is infiltrating my apartment.

Sunny New York

I can’t help but feel inspired to write at moments likes these.

Then again, I feel inspired to write during rainy days too, when the clouds are heavy and the air is moist.

Both kinds of weather inspire different kinds of writing, different songs while I write, different thoughts, different moods.

And it’s not just the weather: location is important too. I’m sure that if I took my laptop outside and wrote in a nearby park, my thoughts would change again. Writing a gloomy zombie apocalypse tale under a glorious sun with kids running around you definitely has a different feel to it. πŸ™‚

What about you? Does the weather or where you’re sitting (your home, the office, out in a park) affect how you write or paint?

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18 comments on “Your Environment Is A Muse?

  1. Absolutely, I feel that the music and weather inspire my writing. The idea of a Muse and being inspired by your enviroment is really interesting to me. Really makes you think about where you are in your life and why. Hmmm.

    • Doesn’t it though? Do we gravitate to those places that inspire us?

      If we’re stuck somewhere that actually hurts our inspiration, why do we stay there (outside of finances I mean)?

      Or were we put there by some other force? Questions . . . .

  2. Environment is a factor. But to a degree, it is also controlable. Or it is for me. I find writing vampire or supernatural related stories and scenes works best if I work in the dark. Heavy curtains, no lights, and certain kinds of music help create the atmosphere.

    Sex scenes are hard to write when working away from home. What if that person walking behind me, past my table, sees what is on my screen? Actually, I’ve reached an age where I’m bored with sex scenes in the novels I read. They are interupting the story. After a certian point, there are really no new ways to write it. As a result, I skim past them to get back to the good story.

    Now that I think about it, happy, sunny, cheerful days are not good for happy, sunny, cheerful scenes, stories, or events either. Because they make me want to go out for a picnic rather than write. And rainy days make me want to curl up on the sofa with a book to read.

    Maybe I’m better off in my darkend, draped room so I can’t see what is going on outside at all.

    • I like how environments affect you in a very different way: they either inspire you to do something else (go for a picnic) or the people around you affect what you’re willing to write (like sex scenes).

      Seems like it’s more about function for you, which is great. What you can’t see can’t affect you, right?

      Thanks for sharing. πŸ™‚

  3. I think environment influences what I write. I can’t usually write a sad piece if I’m somewhere exciting. That is unless the piece I’m writing has pulled me in so deep that it doesn’t really matter where I am I just gotta write it. It definitely can influence my story.

  4. interesting article. I’ve never really thought of it like this.
    I feel like the weather and location has an opposite impact on me sometimes. A lively environment might remind me of friends back home and how much I miss them and then there is a little glum factor in whatever i’m writing.
    I think my mood to write also depends a lot on what’s been happening throughout the day. and then the weather just takes a back seat.

    • It’s funny that you mention opposite effects. I feel that too. Sometimes I’m the only one in a group of friends who looks a little sad during bright, fun days. They don’t know that I’m thinking about something else that the wonderful day reminds me of.

      Daily events definitely have an effect on me too. Music tends to help equalize my mood.

  5. Absolutely! I don’t think that my imagination would have developed as it did had I not grew up in Wisconsin and experienced long winters that kept me inside. On the same note, different environments def do incite different emotions and creativity.

    And a big “yes” to the second question. Not a great movie, but in Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris, Owen Wilson’s character (a writer) is fascinated with walking in the rain in 1920s Paris. me too.

    • It’s funny: most people I run into hate the rain. They see wet NY streets and cringe. But I adore rain almost as much as snow.

      There’s something so purifying about walking outside in the rain, especially in Manhattan. Midtown is usually crowded, but on rainy nights, you can get lost in the city. It may not have the splendor of nature, but the crisp city lights together with the sleek streets are a sight to behold.

      I saw commercials for Midnight in Paris. I haven’t seen a Woody Allen movie in years. Rain in 1920s Paris sounds pretty cool though.

      • I do like getting caught in the rain…and pina coladas…and the taste of champagne…

        I was in NYC for the first time last August. We got caught in the rain in Chelsea on the High Line and again near Central Park. But not in Midtown. In Midtown we ate burgers. If we didn’t have destinations and people to meet, we could’ve sauntered and enjoyed the rain a little more.

        Midnight in Paris is, dare I say, “cute.” Why can’t a movie be this?!

  6. I find personally that the environment is a huge part in your writing, but only because it affects your mood. I try and listen to a certain attitude of music depending on what mood I want to get across. Since my environment is (90% of the time) the same room, I haven’t really experimented with that too much.

  7. No, I’m kind of ‘impervious’ to what the wheather is, except for those hot humid days….can’t stand them….so I guess I’m not completely impervious…:)

    • Haha, I despise humid days too. They just drain so much out of me.

      So you’ve never been inspired by the weather while painting? Maybe a painting of a young lady takes on more life in the sunshine?

      I guess I have this impression in my head that artists are affected or inspired by every little thing around them, including the weather. πŸ˜›

      • Actually I paint mainly at night or early in the day, in my atelier, and it is far from a window, and I know it is a bit strange, but somehow when daylight change the lamps lighting, sometimes I found it difficult to work…and the pictures I’m taking of my work is also bluer, so I have to adjust it in photoshop, but I don’t get the same result. I guess I’m one of the rare painter who run away from naturel night..but I’m no vampire…:)))

  8. I confess rainy days are my favorite. Then again, rare 60-degree weather like today is enlightening, too. I find that in my wanderings, what I see around me – sights, sounds, scents, etc, work their way into different stories in different ways.

  9. Things going on around me are what inspires me to write. It could be something that I’ve seen or maybe even something that I have smelled that drew me back to a memory and I want to write about it. For me it’s a great outlet, to get things on paper or blogged. I can look back on a certain day and see where I was at that point in my life and compare it to where I’m at now.
    I was in New York for the first time last week and loved it! So much going on and the lights on Times Square, what a fun city!

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