A.J.'s last post got me thinking about various projects I have done over the years that have seemed like there was "magic" involved. The thing is I actually believe that magic is real.
I'm not talking about the kind of smoke and mirrors magic you see in stage shows. I'm talking about the kind of magic that happens when you get one of those inspirations that just seem like a gift. It just comes out of nowhere.
Whenever this happens to me I always feel a bit guilty about taking credit for it because I know that it came from elsewhere. I'm never sure just where "nowhere" is but I know it wasn't my brain. Jorma Kaukonen, the guitarist responsible for the brilliant instrumental "Embryonic Journey" was asked once how he came up with the tune. He told of hearing it in a dream, complete and in its entirety. When he awoke from the dream, he sat down with his guitar and played it note for note as if he had been playing it for years.
To me, that's magic. There have been times when I had a single piece of wood that seemed to tell me what it wanted to become. Sometimes it was a simple object that was made using only that piece of wood. Sometimes the piece was incorporated into a bigger work and elevated it in some way. Those are the times that make you want to keep at it. The excitement you feel at those times are usually enough to get you through the next five or six mundane cabinet jobs you had to take to keep the rent paid.