We all go through slumps. It is just part of the creative process. No matter how much we want to believe it won’t happen to us, it does. I have been there – done that – several times over.
I also know I am not alone…
How many of you have had that “slump” moment? Or that “brain freeze” of sorts? Maybe a little lack of mojo? What about writer’s block?
We all go through these points and here are a few things that I have learned to get through them.
- Stop working on the project/task at hand. Put it away. Walk away. Take a break. Often when I do this and then come back and look at it with fresh eyes, suddenly inspiration strikes, a solution emerges, or I realize where I made my wrong turn.
- I clean. I know that seems like a weird one, but I do. I leave the project at hand alone, but clean up the rest of my craft space or work space. Often a clean slate clears away the cobwebs and opens my eyes to what might have been in front of me all along.
- I listen to music. I find music to be supremely inspiring. And I am a bit schizophrenic in my choices – one day a musical soundtrack, the next day jazz standards, tomorrow country, and today hip hop. I find that worlds open up when I turn on music and I love scouting out new-to-me options using online sources like Pandora or Spotify.
- I read a really cheesey magazine. You know the ones – the pop culture, mind numbing ones. I read them for the fashion… all of the celebrities are in the latest and greatest trends and that can spark a new idea for a project – a new pattern, a new material, a new color scheme. It can all help serve as a distraction, but also inspiration at some level.
- I go to bed. I have a habit of staying up too late and working on something too long. Being tired is counter-productive to me and my creativity. I know this about myself. There is a tipping point where I go from inspired to drab and horrible… that is normally time to go to bed – so I go, I sleep on it, wake up refreshed, and get back to it with well-slept eyes.
- I look at blogs of friends and other crafters. I don’t look for ideas to “lift” – I look for more inspiration. Again – color, composition, materials can spark. Also they often post about a new technique that they tried or learned which can apply to something I am working on. While it is fun to see what they are doing, I am working hard to find my own voice, my own look, and my own way. While “lifting” helps some people learn, I am overly cautious to not do this, but if I do, I give credit where credit is due on the technique, the original idea, etc… It is the right thing to do.
Now – these ideas might not work for everyone, but they have worked for me. And, with another note, I will end this post…
Do not get frustrated because your work doesn’t measure up to other people’s work – your work is YOURS. Own it. Live it. Breathe it. Be you – no one else can. Not every layout, canvas, story, journaling block, etc… will be perfect. I look back on my work and think – why did I do that? It was where I was at that point in my life and in my art journey. We are all at different places – embrace that.
Now – happy crafting!