Saturday, January 31, 2009

Creatives of the Week

James Earl Jones received his long overdue Lifetime Achievement Award from the Screen Actors Guild this past Sunday, January 25. James Earl Jones is one of my favorite actors. As Shelley Fabares says, "he's an actor's actor" which is so true - he's very versatile - many know his voice as Darth Vader - not everyone knows his complete body of work or that he is a strong advocate for literacy. Below is my top list of actors and actresses in no particular order:

1. James Earl Jones
2. Jessica Lange
3. Ralph Fiennes
4. Joanne Woodward
5. Paul Newman (RIP)
6. Laura Linney
7. Phillip Seymour Hoffman
8. Bette Davis
9. Maggie Smith
10. Alan Rickman
11. Dustin Hoffman
12. Meryl Streep

Creatives aren't afraid to test and tweak. It's not about perfection, it's about being open to new ideas, new perspectives, change. That's what my hairdresser, Jez and the gang at Fusion do. Every time I come in to get my hair done, Jez is always tweaking. That's a true creative. Check Fusion out!

And, I would be remiss in not mentioning the true creative of the NFL, Charles Richard "Dick" LeBeau, who, according to current ESPN analyst and former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback, Ron Jaworski, is "...arguably the best ever to coach defense...He has done it on such a consistent basis over a long period of time." He was also a great player for the Detroit Lions. So here's to you, Mr. LeBeau, future HOFer and defensive coordinator of the 6-time Super Bowl Champion Pittsburgh Steelers.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

11 Steps for Boosting Creativity

I was sleuthing on the Internet and found 10 Steps for
Boosting Creativity from Jeffrey Baumgartner's site.

Of course, I added some creative nuggets of my own below:

1. Listen to music by Johann Sebastian Bach or Ludwig van Beethoven.

2. Brainstorm. If properly carried out, brainstorming can help you not only come up with loads of new ideas, but it can help you decide which is best.

3. Always carry a small notebook and a pen or pencil around with you. That way, if you are struck by an idea, you can quickly note it down. Consider having it on your night stand - I have had some great ideas in the middle of the night or right when waking up.

4. If you're stuck for an idea, open a dictionary, randomly select a word and then try to formulate ideas incorporating this word. You'd be surprised how well this works. The concept is based on a simple but little known truth: freedom inhibits creativity. There are nothing like restrictions to get you thinking.

5. Define your problem. Grab a sheet of paper, electronic notebook, computer or whatever you use to make notes, and define your problem in detail. You'll probably find ideas positively spewing out once you've done this.

6. If you can't think, get out in nature. Walk. A change of atmosphere is good for you and gentle exercise helps shake up the brain cells. They say being out in nature helps a person's creative juices flow.

7. Don't watch TV. Experiments performed by the JPB Creative Laboratory show that watching TV causes your brain to slowly trickle out your ears and/or nose. It's not pretty, but it happens.

8. Don't do drugs. People on drugs think they are creative. To everyone else, they seem like people on drugs. Get your ideas the natural, old fashioned way - listen to your head or listen to your heart or maybe do both.

9. Read as much as you can about everything possible. Books exercise your brain, provide inspiration and fill you with information that allows you to make creative connections easily.

10. Exercise your brain. Brains, like bodies, need exercise to keep fit. If you don't exercise your brain, it will get flabby and useless. Exercise your brain by reading a lot (see above), talking to clever people and disagreeing with people - arguing can be a terrific way to give your brain cells a workout. But note, arguing about politics or film directors is good for you; bickering over who should clean the dishes is not.

11. Breathe and just be. Take 15 minutes for you every day, breathe and be, you'll be amazed at what this opens up for you.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Happy Birthday, Jackson Pollock

Jackson Pollock's birthday is tomorrow, January 28. He is my favorite artist. While there have been many abstract expressionists, he epitomizes them all. The film, "Pollock", in which Ed Harris directs and stars, and in which Marcia Gay Harden won her academy award, is a must see. I stumbled upon a great Jackson Pollock site check it out here - draw your own Pollock-esque abstract art. Now, that's creative!


Greetings. Namaste. Hi.

I'm Susyn Elise Duris, a film, TV and stage actress. I'm on an incredible journey of exploring my creativity and spirituality to see how far I can go - my goal is to be the best actress I can be by being the best human being I can be.

I have 3 roles that I enjoy and I am proud of: (1)I consider myself a storyteller, not just an actor, (2) I am a student of life and (3) I am a consultant, I love helping people.

Several people have asked me "when are you starting a blog?" and I kept saying "when the time is right". Well, the time is right.

There are many "acting" blogs out there authored by my fellow actors. Many are diaries of the actor's journey. There are many "creativity" and "spirituality" blogs.

My blog is different. It will focus on creatives of every sort. Mr. Webster tells us that a creative is "that which results from originality of thought, expression."

You don't have to be an actor, artist, dancer, musician or something having to do with the arts to be creative. If you express yourself, you are being a creative.

This blog will also provide resources, anecdotes and other information gems to help you as you continue on your spiritual and creative journey.

I look forward to sharing my journey with you and helping you on your journey.