The creativity is flowing. You’re cutting, you’re dyeing and embellishing. Photos have been transferred and yarn selected. The to-do list is long but, you’re scratching things off as you reach your goals. There aren’t enough hours in the day to finish all that you want to do. What a great feeling.
But, what happens when nothing happens? You hit the wall and there are no ideas. Nothing seems to work. Your huge pile of fabric has lost its inspiration. The new paints you just received seem dull. No sketches hit your journal and your studio seems hollow. You’re blocked!! It’s happened to many artists. For some, these spells last for a few hours but for others, weeks and weeks drag on and …still nothing. What do you do? How can you get past this?
Sometimes the remedy is something that can be handled right away.
Tired? Get more sleep. The quickest way to slow the flow of ideas is by trying to work while sleep deprived.
Out of Shape? Move around more. Many artists find that time spent on a brisk walk in a nearby park or breathing through a yoga pose clears and unclutters the thought processes.
Think you’re alone? You’re not. Call an artist friend and share your anguish. After all, misery loves company and a piece of chocolate.
Try a few techniques that Joanne Bast has used when she needs to refresh the artist within:
1. Take photos during your travels. Thinking of places you’ve been, especially if it’s another culture with different art emphasis, often sparks ideas. Joanne was actually sending her ideas from Ho Chi Minh City.
2. Search out calls for exhibits. Sometimes the titles of the exhibits will give you an idea even if you’re too late to enter that show.
3. Current events also yield ideas that can be expressed in art pieces.
4. Think of old movies, particularly old musicals, and/or browse catalogues of clothing or dancewear for figure positions and color combinations.
5. Root through your stash of materials, beads and yarns and group things that look good together.
6. Collage papers, patterns, etc. until something catches your eye.
Try one or all of these and see where they take you. There are more ideas coming from others. Stay tuned.