• The Adventuring Artist

6 Healthy Habits for your creative self

Like anything in life, being an artist takes patience, dedication and trial, and error. And like anything in life, convincing yourself to fall into the habit of working on it regularly is…difficult. Creative lulls, moments where you feel like you have lost all of your creative talent and spark. These moments can lead to devastation and couch potatoes. And you know what, that’s OK. There will always be times where you can’t get yourself to do what you want. But when that moment ends you need to push yourself up from that couch, grit your teeth and prepare to get messy. Whether you are a beginning artist or have been a professional artist for years I am hoping that these tips and tricks will help you gain or recover your creative spark and help you gain some healthy habits to increase your creativity and your workflow. So without further ado, here are my 6 tips to cultivation healthy habits for your creative self.

Tip 1: No Pressure. Stress is a constant thing. Did I feed the cat, did I pay rent on time, am I catching a cold? Stressor after stressor after stressor. And this pressure can get to you.

And when if the thought of putting pen to paper causes you to stress then take a step back.

Instead of thinking that you have to make something beautiful, amazing, awe-inspiring. Make something simple and fun.

Make funky lines and funny shapes. Use every color in your arsenal. Just have fun with it. That act of putting something down and realizing that nothing bad will happen along with having fun can make a world of difference.

Be willing to experiment and try new things. Don’t be afraid to place things down on random and don’t be afraid of failure. Even if the result is not perfect it is something that you made. And you took the effort to put something down which is the first step to your creative journey.

Two markers placed down randomly at first lead to this foggy forest landscape

Tip 2: Make a plan, stick to the plan Take a look at your schedule. When do you have some free time? Do you have 30 minutes after you wake up that you don’t do anything with? How about 20 minutes after dinner, or even 10 minutes during lunch?

Find a time that works for you and set that aside every day for art. Sit down and make something, even if it is simply a rough, for that time period.

Practice makes perfect, and by creating this daily habit you are increasing your productivity and your skills.

You have probably heard this before but it really does help. By cultivating this daily habit you are also cultivating your skills and improving yourself as an artist. Sketch your coffee cup, or your cat or some imaginary creature. Just make something and don’t be afraid.

I personally take 10 minutes before I go to work every morning and 20 minutes before I go to bed for “art time” I don’t always make finished pieces but I get something down on paper. And make sure you work for the entire time frame even if you are just doodling.

Tip 3: Take pictures. Make it a habit to carry either a camera or a phone that has a camera with you everywhere. And whenever you see something that catches your attention, because it is beautiful or weird or funny. Stop and take a picture.

These pictures can spark ideas and encourage you to see art and creativity wherever and anywhere.

You can also use these images as a digital library of resources. If you get stumped while trying to come up with an idea, scour these images for something that causes a creative spark

I collected these autumn leaves and just loved the colors so much.

Tip 4: Take a look at the work of others. Other artists can help you find ideas. You may find artists who style you absolutely love, use that to help you make new pieces and find your own style.

You can find artists on just about any platform, Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram. You can go to museums and art galleries as well. Just don’t be afraid to look at others artwork. You can find some amazing pieces and amazing people that can inspire you.

A head full of stars

Tip 5: Take an Art Class If you feel that you would prefer a more structured and professional beginning then don’t be afraid to take an art class.

Go to the local community college or galleries and see what is offered. There are also lots of options for YouTube and Skill share.

These class can help you when you are not sure where to start or if you feel that you need a push in the right direction. If you like interacting with others then a community college course might be a good choice. Galleries will sometimes offer painting classes and these are often looser than those at colleges.

If you prefer to be within the comfort of your own home then as mentioned above YouTube and skill share offer lots of different courses.

Tissue Paper Flower that I made with a class at my local library

Tip 6: Go on an Adventure

I don’t mean around the world. Though you can go around the world if you want.

What I mean is, go to the park, or a cafe you have never been to or the new grocery store. Explore and take a small adventure. The fresh air helps your brain work and the new sights can encourage creativity.

Be willing to try new things, explore and expand your horizons. This will improve your mental library of images and increase your ability to think up new ideas and expand your imagination.

And don’t be afraid to take your sketchbook with you and make a quick sketch of anything that catches your fancy. And don’t forget your camera (tip #3)

I found this little guy at my local library. He would make a cute drawing, especially in watercolor I think.

I hope you find these tips helpful and that you try some of them out. If you do, be sure to take pictures and tag me on Instagram @an_adventuring_artist

Rebecca Adams The Adventuring Artist Don't forget to subscribe and receive free and helpful information for your artistic journey. The Adventuring Artists articles focus on giving artist of every kind ways to improve, experiment and network.


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