Plan a New Creative Year: On Inspiration – Past, Present, & Future



Tonight I wrote and burned a 2018 wish for you: May 2018 bring inspired joy and fruitful art-making in abundance. Your art might be cooking or quilting, painting or knitting, piano or creative writing – whatever it might be, I hope you have more time for creating and more joy in the act of creation than ever before. Click on the picture below to watch a video of the wish ritual:

2018 January Wish Ritual

I will be making a wish each month in 2018. Have a request? CLICK HERE to let me know.


I’ve chosen a word-of-the-year for over a decade. I find it increases my focus and leads (in a slow and dedicated way) to real results. The word becomes a kind of mantra to focus my intention and energy on. This year, my word is flourish. Here are the dictionary definitions: Flourish: beautiful, bold, and extravagant designs (especially in hand-lettering). Flourish: to prosper. Flourish: growth and development in a healthy and vigorous way. Flourish: fanfare. The word is rooted in the Latin word for flower. I’m hoping as I walk through this new year with flourish in my mind and heart I’ll find the extravagant blossoming this sassy-strong word promises.

2018 Word of The Year Flourish

Have you chosen a word of the year for 2018? I’d love to hear about it! CLICK HERE to join the conversation.


Beyond the idea of a word-of-the-year, I have another intention I’m integrating into my daily life. I received a gorgeous, vintage, 5-year journal from my parents a few years ago. I’ve been waiting for the right theme. I considered making it a gratitude journal, but I’ve settled into a variation on that theme: an inspiration journal. I want to actively seek and catalog all the sources of inspiration in my life; I look forward to sharing this journey with you.

5 Year Diary

Most inspiring moment of 2017:

I visited the British Library in London in October. Here’s an excerpt from my travel journal:

I cried in the largest library in the world. Points for me – I feel I’ve reached some new level of bookishness… or maybe it’s English-major-ness? All these extraordinary items are a testament to the human spirit and the potential which lies in the best of each of us. Here’s a list (in no order at all) of the wondrous treasures I was fortunate to see:

  • Leonardo’s notebooks.
  • Mozart score (light and precise script).
  • Handel Messiah score (strong, bold, large script).
  • Pucinni Madame Butterfly score (absolutely wild script).
  • Chopin score (small and exact script).
  • Bartok score (itsy-bitsy, teeny-tiny script).
  • Stravinski score (bold and sloppy script).
  • Albrecht Durer illustrations!
  • Letter from Michaelagelo – his handwriting looked so perfect it might have been printed out rather than created with a quill.
  • An illustrated letter from John Lennon with “I remember a time when everyone I loved hated me.” written on it.
  • A wondrous world of illustrated medieval manuscripts (I had to sit down and compose myself at this point).
  • Ancient maps!
  • 1st edition of Oscar Wilde. 
  • Breathtaking (seriously so breath taking I needed my inhaler) illustrated sacred texts from around the world: Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Christianity, Buddhism.
  • Shiva’s footprints!
  • Gutenberg’s bible with gorgeous green flourishes and lots of lovely birds.
  • An illustrated version of Orpheus and Euridice from 1493. 
  • Scientific books full of wondrous details!
  • A private diary of a WW1 soldier regarding the battle of the Somme (sniff).
  • A letter from Gandhi to the Viceroy of India that begins “Dear friend” even though it discusses his own arrest during a peaceful protest.
  • A draft of the final ultimatum to Germany from September of 1939. 
  • a Jacobite cockade worn at the battle of Culloden with the words “With Charles our great and nobel prince, we’ll greatly fall or nobly save our country.” written into the paper folds of the brooch. 
  • A letter from Queen Elizabeth the 1st to James of Scotland, signed with her bold, embellished signature: Elizabet.
  • A meticulous waterworks plan for a cathedral.
  • The Magna Carta and the Papal Bull that annulled it. (Yay for individual rights!)
  • An exhibit called “The Art of the Book” featuring book treasures from pretty much everywhere!
  • A book of short stories from Agra, India 1039 showing a mother showing her son his cradle and reprimanding him for his arrogance for “he was once a helpless child.”
  • Homer’s Iliad from Florence circa 1466 with stunning gold, blue, and green illustrations.
  • Bible after bible in every size imaginable, from 11″x17″ to 5″x5″ – Wycliffe and Tyndale new testaments, the handwritten Lindisfarne gospels from the year 700…and on and on.

Melinda at the British Library

Today’s entry is more modest: “Inspired by the bittersweetness of change and by my friend DARSY’S REIKI INFUSED GODDESS NECKLACES. Also: cello music.”

Interested in creating your own inspiration journal? Want more info? FOLLOW ME ON INSTAGRAM for regular updates – post pictures of your own inspiration journal using the hashtag #inspirationjournal.


Great news: I’ve been writing a lot recently! I’ve found a bit of magic in character development using tarot cards… This deck is luscious. It’s called the STEAMPUNK TAROT DECK.

Anka Tarot Reading

I’m also working on sketches for two new angels to fly over these abstract canvases…

Angel Backdrop Paintings

Looking for divine feminine inspiration? Prints of my five most popular Goddess paintings are AVAILABLE HERE.

What are you creating? I’d love to hear about it! CLICK HERE to join the conversation.

Happy New Year!

In joy,

Melinda Eliza


  1. Melinda Eliza says:

    Thanks Jess – me too. I’m finding they are all around me if only I pay attention.
    Happy New Year!

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