Ever felt like you just can't open that sketchbook or walk into your studio?
Let's face it, the laundry won't wash itself... You still have to clean the bathroom and you haven't even thought about what to cook for dinner yet!
Or, is it possible that you are procrastinating?
It seems that just about every Artist I have ever spoken to goes through this at some point; consistently failing to get their bums behind the easel and instead getting distracted by other things that frankly can wait. Nobody is going to die if dinner is an hour late and it's not the end of the world if the vacuuming is done tomorrow...
There are ways to handle procrastination, depending on whether the reasons are simply that life is getting in the way, you are going through a creative block or whether actually, you are going through a bit of a confidence crisis.
Since this subject is a lengthy one, I'm splitting this in to two blog posts; this one focuses on the confidence crisis/creative block. My next post will look at ways to find time for painting when life gets in the way.
I hasten to add that I find it very easy to write about this because a) I am currently not in crisis and b) I have, however been through them before!
Some tips to try when you are experiencing a creative block/confidence crisis...
The first thing to do is to turn to another artist. If you are a blogger, then the chances are you have met some amazing artist friends who are only too pleased to give you a pep talk! They have almost certainly been through it themselves and may well be able to help pull you out of it. If you don't know any other artists, then you should check out this link, and scroll down to the (free) Artbyte titled 'Collective Insight on Blocks' (by Carol Marine). Here you will find several, very talented artists who have shared their accounts of their own creative blocks and how they managed to pull themselves out of it.
Give yourself permission to have a break... (just not for too long) Maybe give yourself a couple of weeks away from the easel and enjoy something else for a bit; baking, gardening... whatever takes your fancy. My guess is that the brushes will start calling you the minute your first cake collapses!
Visit as many local art galleries and art blogs as you can. You may just find the spark of inspiration that you need.
Hang a white-board on the wall and write on it each time you have an idea for a painting. Out of sight, out of mind, but when you see it on the wall every day, you won't forget your creative inspirations!
Take some time out to organise and clean your studio. Sometimes this is all it takes to get those creative juices flowing. There's nothing that will get me in the studio quicker than having a freshly organised space to work in!
So your last painting was a disaster? So what?? Who cares??? And as to whether it was a failure or not, well that depends on how you look at it. It's highly likely that you learned a lot from that painting, so how can that be a negative thing? It certainly wasn't a waste of time! Mistakes are our friends... A bad painting is simply a stepping stone to a good one. Nobody ever got better at anything without making mistakes. Period.
Take some time to sit down and look through all of the paintings you have done that you are really proud of; the ones that make you wonder... "How did I do that??" That's a really great way of realising your own ability.
And finally, if you are a beginner and you are simply scared of failing, just remember this... In order to become good at something, you must first be willing to be bad at it!
If you really are in need of a great big creative boot up the bum, check out this video below, which I came across the last time it happened to me. It was posted by Danny Gregory, who I think is one of the most inspirational Artists and bloggers around. You must check out his blog...
Meanwhile, if you know another artist who is in need of a good kick up the bum, why not share this post with them?
Coming up: On Saturday, I'll be posting part 2 of this post, but this time I'll be focussing on how to find more time to paint! If you have any suggestions, please comment below and I will happily share them!
Q. Have you ever been experienced a creative block/crisis?
(How did you deal with it?)
Week in a nutshell...
Baking:Coffee and walnut Cake - Was a complete disaster!! Saturday Night:Friends for dinner Listening to: Enigma Discovered:A cool podcast, Your Creative Push
(Click below to sign up for my Quarterly newsletter for news, product reviews, studio tips, exclusive discounts, plus links to other Artists!)...