All posts filed under: Creativity & Perspective


Failed ideas. Attempts at something that eventually yielded nothing. Hope and excitement, shattered; a mess of broken ideas clearly born from inspiration that was delicate to begin with. But as the accumulated detritus is swept away—Whoosh!—a spark flickers. Hope is among the remnants. Therein rises the Phoenix. © 2018 Joe Blend. All rights reserved.


I once made my own toy, when I was a kid. I did so in order to participate in an adventure I knew others were experiencing. — Money was tight when I was a kid…at least for a period of time, long enough to prevent me from obtaining one of the most coveted toys on the market at that point: Voltron. There were three versions of this mechanized force for good—gladiator, warrior, and lion—and I eventually owned the first two. But before that blessing was bestowed upon my young imagination, I owned none. And during that period of none, the version I wanted most was the Deluxe Lion Set. We can all relate to being a kid who doesn’t get what they want. Especially when others in your neighborhood had what you wanted. That’s how my Voltron period began. But instead of focusing on the problem, I committed to a solution: I made the toy I couldn’t have. “Let me tell you that my level of patience as a kid was apparently, and significantly, more …


Sometimes, a mistake can be positive. In the world of creativity, that scenario is called a happy accident. And it’s never expected. But believe me, dear readers, an errant mark or failed experiment—perhaps due to a jittery hand or lapse in judgment—can serve as the catalyst for a transformation worthy of Hogwarts. Granted, a happy accident is always followed by a panicked pause in breathing…a hair-raising experience, for sure. But eventually, an unforeseen flub can reveal fresh inspiration or if lucky, an elevated level of creativity. Embrace a mistake. Because a happy accident can, in fact, make an artist…well, happy. — EXAMPLE / The drawing below is an example of a happy accident. When I started, it was meant to be a negative-space illustration of a coffee cup. However, when I realized I’d done nothing more than surround the shape of a cup with Sharpie ink, I became discouraged. But within the depths of that failure came inspiration. I decided to add steam with a white-ink pen, along with an outline of the cup in black …


‘Tis a wondrous experience to listen to the soundtrack for Close Encounters of the Third Kind at 5:45 a.m. As it plays in the background, the windows—still dark panes of glass at that hour—beg one to ponder the vastness of the heavens. Each twinkling gem is an explosive ball of energy, but collectively they sit quietly like a connect-the-dots drawing waiting to live. But people have, in fact, connected the dots. They called their masterpieces Scorpio, Leo, Orion, et al., and without so much as incorporating, into the nomenclature, a nod to the fact that each of those dots—outside our perspective from Earth—is physically too far away from the others to form even the semblance of a horribly planned neighborhood. That fact, by itself, is telling. Yet there they are, together, in the night sky…personages bound by imagination and sheer will. Now consider creativity and all its artistic forms. Art—for personal or professional needs, from any discipline—doesn’t exist until it’s created. Constellations and art. Creativity. Sheer will…and imagination. Carl Sagan, with his billions and billions of …


The best ideas are born from a desire to ignore convention and embrace instinct. It is a move toward fresh and exciting possibilities instead of forcing fresh and exciting upon what already exists. Speak with your voice and people will hear you; mimic someone else’s voice and your tribe will keep walking. © 2017 Joe Blend. All rights reserved.

The League of Librarians | 2-oz. Read | Blog


Deep in the nooks and crannies of society lives an organization, a dedicated movement, defined only by the unique ability of its members. I discovered the organization years ago and began to follow them, studying their every move. They have no handshake nor do they wear any sort of identifiable insignia. What’s most peculiar is they do not occupy a joint headquarters or secret lair but instead use their homes or public spaces as a base of operations. Despite that public presence, they operate in whispers and nudges, although they always use their abilities for the greater good. These extraordinary citizens—these devoted individuals—are known as the League of Librarians. The League of Librarians has been around for as long as stories have existed. It was formed in the distant past by the first person to ever tell a story. Regrettably, the League’s archives have no record of this person’s name or background so it appears that his or her identity is lost to the ages. Members of the League have a single magical ability: to …