You don't have to consider yourself a creative person to know that inspiration in life is crucial. Crucial to birthing ideas and thinking about things in new and sometimes different ways. As someone who considers themselves a visual person, and is greatly influenced by the look and feel of something, inspiration for me usually comes from tangible things: photographs, pieces of art, food, sometimes fashion. And I know I'm not alone when I say that much of my inspiration now comes from the internet.
There seems to be millions of blogs out there. And like anything you gravitate to, it can be hard to articulate just why one in particular resonates why others don't. I think part of it is, if we were to ever meet, I like to think the women behind these blogs would instantly become my friends. They each reflect some aspect of who I am or aspire to be.
So these are some of my favorites, the ones that help keep those creative juices flowing. Note: All photos are attributed to their respective blogs.
Soule Mama. Oh Soule Mama. I stumbled upon Amanda Blake Soule's blog through Etsy a few years ago and I've been devoted ever since. She may even be the reason I started blogging in the first place. Her life is so different than mine; she lives on a farm in Maine where she homeschools her five children. But what struck me was how much care she took in creating a simple and natural family and home-centered life. I'd never really seen anything like it. She inspires me to think of my own home as a place for nourishment in all its different forms.
3191 Miles Apart. Started by two friends, one who lives in Portland, Maine the other in Portland, Oregon, 3191 is, according to their site, "weekly thoughts and images about simple living and current inspirations." They have a knack for capturing every day moments in a beautiful way and are always looking for new things to make. I've found myself making many of their projects, more than any other "crafty" (hate that word) site. Theirs are purposeful, long-lasting and always beautiful.
For Me, For You. This blog belongs to Kate Miss, graphic designer, photographer, jewelry maker. She has a great eye for things, and I love her photographs. Her musings about trying to find yourself in your 20s, reminds me a lot of myself at that age. She inspires me to take better photos and gives me new ways of looking at our shared hometown Los Angeles.
Sweet Fine Day. Run By Jenna Park who co-owns the Whimsy & Spice baking company with her husband Mark. First and foremost her photographs (I told you I was a visual person!) are lovely. Jenna keeps it real and does not sugar coat raising kids and trying to make a living as a creative person in your late 30s. Plus her photos of New York City make me nostalgic for my days living there.
The ones I look to most to help me figure out what in the world to cook night after night, week after week.
The Sprouted Kitchen. While not entirely a vegetarian blog, Sara Forte's food is primarily plant-based. It's a very reliable place for fairly easy meal ideas. And again, just in case I haven't emphasized how important this is, the photographs are gorgoeous, taken by her very talented husband Hugh Forte.
My New Roots. Canadian food blogger Sarah Britton lives in Copenhagen and works as a natural chef. I usually find myself using her recipes as a base for my own concoctions. Her cooking demos and her TED talk are very inspirational about eating in the most natural way possible. Sarah has gotten me thinking about persuing my own path in holistic nutrition training. We shall see.
101 Cookbooks. Heidi Swanson's legenday vegetarian blog. Perfect place for simple meals.
The Brick House. A good place to look for do-it-yourself home ideas. And also fun for a look at spaces you wouldn't mind living in.
The Sartorialist. Scott Schuman's famed street style blog. If you have any interest in style, his site is a must see. Scott shoots real people he finds on the street. His site's always better than any fashion magazine.
To keep Mateo interested in photography, I bought him this little Lego digital camera a few months ago:
Since then, I can count on one hand the number of times I've seen him use it. I try not to be too pushy about stuff like this, either he's into it or he's not, and I truthfully kind of forgot about it. But recently we brought it out for a photography class he's taking after school, and when I went to see what, if anything, was on there, there were more pictures than I ever thought possible, probably around 300 pictures. He must have been doing it all on the sly. There were lots and lots of pictures of his toys, his books, his green blanket, stuff he looks at everyday and has an attachment to. But there were also some portraits that he took while we were driving somewhere (where or when this was, I couldn't tell you.)
Together they mirror, I think perfectly, just who he is: extremely silly, often dramatic, occasionally sad, but usually happy. Finding them taught me to remember that there are many layers to a child that aren't apparent but are captured in ways you can't expect.