Everyone’s art is different – some like to paint their feelings, some like to paint other people’s, some like to replicate reality with photo-realism and some (like me) like to bring the world’s unseen magic to life. Whatever your style, we are all trying to find a way to share our view of the world but now and again we will inevitably slip into an un-creative rut and find ourselves struggling to feel inspired.
If you ever find yourself needing a bit of help to get into the right frame of mind for creating a masterpiece, so here are 10 top tips to get you going…
1. Get out more
None of this reclusive artist nonsense – that’s sooo 1880’s. Go for a walk and shift your perspective. Use your fingers as a ‘view finder’ and start to see everything as a photo or painting – soon you’ll start doing it all the time without even thinking about it.
2. Wear glasses? Take them off!
Sometimes the details get in the way. Blur the lines a little and get inspired by your other senses for a change. Smells, sounds and touch all make for great material, or even just noticing the colours rather than shapes. Don’t wear glasses? Then just squint a bit or close your eyes!
3. Allow your subconscious to take the lead
Sit down with a pen and paper, close your eyes and scribble for 10 seconds, using different strokes and movements for interesting results. Open your eyes and see what images you can pick out of the mess! It’s OK to leave your main brain on the back burner for a while. Trust your Id.
4. Remember the magic in the world
Grown ups are so boring. If you were to grab a camera and take stealthy shots of the general public, more often than not the adults will be wearing a scowl (trust me, I’ve tried it), whilst children’s faces are usually filled with wonder and delight. We all had it at some point in our lives, so it’s just a matter of getting it back. Take half an hour out to meditate or read a book that takes you back to your childhood and conjour up those long forgotten feelings. It’s in there, you just have to find it and when you do, hold onto it and watch your world change!
5. Laugh – a lot
How do you expect to unleash your creativity when most of us don’t even breathe properly? Sit with a friend and start with a fake laugh – a HUGE, ugly, snorting one; the worst you can muster. Then do another. And another. And another… just wait and see what happens.
6. Keep a dream diary
Even if your daily life has drifted into the arena of the mundane, I’m willing to bet that your dream life hasn’t. So, as soon as you wake up, whether that’s in the middle of the night or in the morning, make scribbling jibberish in your journal the first thing you do – the weirder the better – and when you’re struggling to get your creative juices flowing, pick a page, any page…
7. Go big or go home
Get yourself some massive bits of paper and experiment with different equipment in a bunch of 5 minute sketches. Life drawing is great for this and I love getting messy with chalk and charcoal. Splatting brightly coloured paints at full force feels great too! Something about the movement opening up your body can open up your mind too – and it’s a GREAT stress release.
8. Give *everything* a personality
This may be considered one of the first signs of madness but all of the best artists are a little bit odd…
Bring everything to life, give inanimate objects names and background stories. You might get some funny looks when you’re having conversations with your household appliances, but who doesn’t love an eccentric?
Whether it’s an hour down the road or half way round the world, there’s always new places to see and experiences to be had…so have them!
10. Try something new
Eat an oyster, do a sky dive, take up Gregorian chant classes…make a list of all the bizarre things you’ve always wanted to try and then tick them off one by one. There’s nothing more inspirational than life itself, so you’d better get living it!