In the past few weeks I’ve been lucky enough to see a live performance of Mozart’s “The Magic Flute” by the Santa Fe Opera, as well as paintings by Monet, Renoir, and Van Gogh. Money was tight, so it was a Youth Night dress rehearsal performance of “The Magic Flute” that I took my family to. And the paintings were part of a traveling exhibit that had come to our town for the summer–I went on a Sunday when there’s free general admission to the museum so that I only had to pay for the special exhibit.
Even when money is tight, there are ways to get close to art without spending all the grocery money. Keep an eye on the “Events” section of a community magazine or local paper–often these can be found at coffee shops and city community centers in the racks.
These days it’s hard for me to relax when reading or at “writer events” since I’ve gotten so serious about writing. But there are many other wonderful art forms to enjoy and admire. I’ve started paying attention to what exhibits, concerts, plays, and films are happening in town, and making an effort to find ones I can afford.
Making this effort to bring other arts back into my life has provided a source of inspiration and a buffer against despair. To get close enough to see the brushstrokes of a Monet painting was exhilarating: so much so I accidentally set off the silent alarm in the museum room by getting a little TOO close. But I didn’t touch the painting or get close enough to breathe on it, and never would. I should also point out there were no signs anywhere saying “Don’t get closer than 1 foot from the paintings.”
Oh, and I didn’t get in trouble with the security guards, just a lecture on the proper distance to maintain.
So keep an eye out for concerts, plays, art exhibits, musicals, operas, films, etc. that could be sources of inspiration. There are times when it’s so enjoyable to just sit back and admire the work of other artists.