Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Thrifted Life: Take the Inspirational Tour

As a writer, I like to think that I see things just a bit differently. I suspect that other writers, artists, photographers and creative-minded folk feel the same. We observe the tiniest details and draw inspiration from unconventional sources. Perhaps this is one of the reasons that I find thrift shopping so appealing. Seeing and sometimes buying otherwise discarded items leaves me wondering about the previous owner. What did they gain from this book, this painting, this oddity that I now possess?

At the very least I know what I gain. I gain satisfaction and a sense of fate intervening when I find that one thing that just speaks to me that no one else unearthed. And in some small way I gain something immeasurably important: a muse, something to be inspired by.

After reading Thrift Core and seeing Van’s treatise on art, visual stimulation and productivity, I at long last know I’m not alone. It doesn’t hurt that we both share common devotion for zombies, robots, Japan, vintage wares and thrifting oddities.

What we own and what personal value we put upon certain possessions just speaks to our character. So here is my character study. This is the first of what will be several installments of my own virtual tour. This segment: My bookcase.

Robot and Books_Tour

Of course the words and thoughts of other writers are of constant inspiration. And as you will see, I have varying tastes. On this shelf we have the macabre. Ever since seeing my first horror movie, I’ve had a dark love for the genre. I found a copy of All I Need to Know About Filmmaking I Learned From The Toxic Avenger while thrifting in Canada and very nearly shouted the pride in my acquisition aloud.

Clown and Books_Tour
…Then there’s books and zines on crafting. The Big Ass Book of Crafts is a must-have.

Nude Dolls and Books_Tour

…And a few classics, mixed with a few oddities. Remember 202 Things To Do: Activities and Finger Fun  for Children… now how does that get shelved near Kurt Vonnegut?

Japan Books_Tour

Here’s my entire shelf of books on Japan…culture, fashion, language, lore and of course…Japanese horror cinema. That Domo-kun and Totoro are straight out of Tokyo. I bought so many toys I had to buy another piece of luggage to bring everything home. The antiquarian copies of Japanese Fairy Tales and Tales of Japan were both thrifted, as was that pink laughing Buddha statue.

Well that’s just some visual support of what intrigues and inspires me. In the future you can expect a whole mish-mash of interests and collections that will likely make you wonder if I have some strange variety of Attention Deficit Disorder when thrifting.

Feminism? Zombies? Gnomes? Owls? Killer dolls? What’s the connection? The connection is me... and my strange finds that I love.


Lakota [Faith Hope and Charity Shopping] said...

I love a peek at a bookshelf, houses are very weird without books. I'm desperate to go to Japan one day. Your shelves look cool also - did you decoupage the doodles or paint them or what? Oh, and that kewpie doll in the middle looks like my youngest did as a baby!

Jackie Jardine said...

Oh I love to read, so having a fully-stocked bookshelf is a necessity for me. Japan is amazing. I hope you do get to go one day. The city is bright and bustling and the countryside is gorgeous. And everyone there was so friendly and very forgiving of the language barrier. That bookshelf actually was bought that way...from Ikea, lol. It's the "Billy" style, because the doodling is actually Shakespeare quotes.

Vanessa said...

Teehee, I have that robot and that domo, and as we already noted, several of the books, too.

I'll link this in next week's post where I show off the rest of my office/dining room space. I think most of us thrifters just thrive off the objects we find, you said it best, they become our muse. They infuse us with creative energy!

Jackie Jardine said...

I'm glad that other thrifters out there share the belief that sometimes secondhand shopping is more than just the items we find. It's sometimes about the value (not necessarily the price tag) for those items in our lives individually. And maybe for what those items can inspire!