This is a hard entry to write. I keep starting and stopping like I have nothing important to say but I think this is probably one of the most important pieces of advice that I can gift to you – to myself – to us.
I’ve been struggling a lot lately with my own personal artistic style. I don’t feel challenged and because I’m no longer challenging my own illustrations and art, I don’t feel inspired to draw or paint. I’ve never felt a moment in my life where I didn’t have a vision or clear path set out in front of me… I mean, shoot… at age 8 I declared emphatically that I was going to be a Graphic Designer. And I knew by going this route with my career, I could keep drawing & being an art kid for life.
So…this whole notion that I no longer feel challenged with my own illustrations & art is HUGE for me…it’s like losing a vital cog in the wheel. And instead of just being like – Draw, Katy, Draw… I’m saying… STOP… assess… and let’s see where the act of pausing and shift my creative energy elsewhere will take me. I’m accepting now that I have an intellectual curiosity that is stepping in front of my previous full on production-mode within my own art. I’m accepting that there is something going on here and there’s some serious Creative Exploration that needs to happen to get past this hurdle…
THO – lemme tell you – I find this hurdle to be one of the most exciting times in my life #PostivityForever….
TO CREATE A CREATIVE LIFE YOU LOVE YOU MUST STOP, EXPLORE & PUSH YOURSELF IN NEW DIRECTIONS.
What I am doing instead of SO powerful & I think it’s worthy of sharing. I’m taking my creative spirit, exploring other mediums & working hand-n-hand with others that share the same spark for wanting to learn, grow & #dosomethingcreative every single day. Instead of working towards being productive & producing X amounts of art each day… I’m focusing on creative exploration & being present in this moment. Because of that, I’m finding my pie in the sky ideas are tangible and attainable. This is meaningful because in my own artwork I was feeling like I wasn’t challenged… could it be that all I needed to do was shift, be present and start exploring instead of being so focused on the dollar amount I might make from pure production mode?
Success to me in my creative life was always surrounding doing what I was best at and sticking to that. But I think a true creative spirit thrives in the shifts & by using your own inner voice to guide you.
Here are 3 Tips to keeping up with your creative self when you’re stuck in your own creativity:
SURROUND YOURSELF WITH OTHER CREATIVE PEOPLE:
Naturally, I adore being observant and learning from other people because I’m a curious kitty. When I surround myself with creative energy than I feel more inspired to be creative & feel less afraid to take risks when I see those around me totally rockin’ things that seem super difficult for me (like re-wiring something or building a dining table). Being part of SFEtsy, I feel inspired on the daily by the drive and ambition so many makers have in San Francisco.
REMEMBER TO DAYDREAM:
I’m always thinking of more projects which naturally influence my art even if they are different from “the usual”. I also take the time to place myself in an inspiration spot at least once a week. Easy to do when you’re in San Francisco… surrounded by beauty. But consider lighting a candle at home and sitting quietly with your tea one evening. Sometimes you gotta get a little crafty with how you build a space for your daydreaming – but once you have that magic sauce, you’re golden!
FOLLOW YOUR CREATIVE FLOW:
Stay positive and follow your bliss! Seeking out new experiences is part of growing and exploring. It’s taken me years and years to get there but I’ve finally accepted that a large part of my energy is within my intellectual curiosity. I enjoy learning new things – I want to be challenged. Taking a risk to allow yourself to explore something new will create a beautiful complexity in any of the new work that comes afterward.
I can’t help but recognize that this exploration and journey that I’m on – this fork in the road per-say – is in an effort to pull out and uncover some of my own creative self that has yet to be discovered. I’m excited about what that means – what will I unearth by even acknowledging this, shifting & making moves to be even MORE myself? My hope is that I will becoming more authentic in my artwork while challenging myself to be even more inspiring towards myself and others.