It’s three in the morning. After tossing and turning for hours on end, you’ve finally found it: the perfect position for sleeping. Your eyes flutter shut, but your restless brain seems to have other plans. Out of nowhere, your mind’s filled with wonderful concepts for lyrics, poems, sculptures; you name it. You scramble to scribble down all your ideas before ducking back under the covers.
Although creativity does come in bursts, often times, it’s not there when we need it. You may be on a roll…’til that big, cartoon light-bulb goes dim. For all those who struggle with some form of artist’s block, here are some ways you can flip on the switch.
Get “in tune” with your art
Whether it’s pop, rock, or rhythm and blues, a little mood music can make all the difference. You can gain inspiration by listening to lyrics and channeling them into your work. Consider the tone, flow, and all the emotions they bring forth. If you’re easily distracted by words, instrumental music can be just as effective for both relaxing and pumping you up.
2. Go for a walk
There’s nothing like fresh air to help clear your head. Set aside some time so you can stop and smell (or maybe paint) the roses. If you’d rather not go outside, look out the window and observe. You’ll find that every little thing has a story just waiting to be told.
3. Try a new medium
Creating art doesn’t always have to be stressful. Let loose for a bit and experiment. Don’t limit yourself–crayons aren’t just for children. There’s pottery, printmaking, painting, composing, and so much more that can be done. And no matter the outcome, you’ll learn something.
4. Draw inspiration from others
Brain machine broke? Well, just look to the pros! Study their styles and figure out what makes them unique. Pay close attention to subject matter, color schemes, their favorite phrases, etc. Then, mimic (not copy) their various styles and incorporate them into your own work.
5. Revisit old pieces
Yes, it’s time to re-live all your cringe-worthy middle school years. But fear not! This method is all about progress. Whether you made something last week or five years ago, you’ve already come a long way. Putting a fresh spin on old, forgotten projects is an effective and fun way to see how you’ve grown.