Monday, July 13, 2015

Stuck Between a Rock and a Hard Place: Artist's Block

I might have a million assignments due in a few days, but you'll find me playing Mario Party, microwaving pizza bites, or looking at the latest cute cat meme.  Why?

Artist's Block.

The symptoms are very similar to the ones that you'll find in Writer's Block.  You've got plenty of ideas (or assignments), but how to execute them is giving you problems.  You keep slamming into this metaphorical wall (for some people the wall is very physical) and there's no crack or opening and it's fifty million feet high.

Solutions are eluding you and your creativity has flown the coup.  No matter how many times you touch that pencil tip to paper nothing comes to you.  Empty:  Mind, body, and soul.

"Nothing! No ideas!  Useless, empty brain!"
And when you do start to draw something is looks like absolute crap!  You wouldn't even show it to your five-year-old niece!

I'm currently going through such a spell.  I cannot tell you how hard it is simply to write this post.  I have the idea, but the execution of it is killing me.  I have plenty of art assignments to do, and plenty of personal projects that I want to do, but instead you'll find me playing Zelda on my computer, checking out geeky pictures on Pinterest, or eating yet another carton of ice cream.

How do you overcome this wall in your mind and bask in the creative juices as they flow through you and out your fingertips?

There are a hundred websites and blogs out there that will tell you how to overcome an artist's block.  Here are mine:

1.  Get out of the House
  • Go for a hike, a drive, walk around downtown.  Just get away from your dwelling place!  You spend a lot of time there.  Their familiar walls may be stifling your creativity.
2.  Start a Completely Different Project
  • Set aside your current project and start something that is completely different.  Different subject, different medium, different audience.  Just Different!  This one thing might actually be the step that snaps you out.  Instead of fighting the same problems, you have a whole different set.  You're welcome.
3.  Get Creatively Inspired
  • Go to an art museum/gallery, look through some art books at the bookstore, watch some artist's vlog.  Others' amazing art will give you new ideas and fresh outlooks and inspire you to get to work.  I caution against looking at friends' art stuff during this time period.  Any other time we're all like, "Oh, that's so amazing, look how much you've progressed!  Oh, what number of commissions is this?  Loved the color palette you used in your last one! Ect". 
           I find that during Artist's block time the art of my friends is my worst enemy.  I know how bad            they were when they started out and from my point-of-view it looks like their skills are sky                  rocketing.  Any other time you would be ecstatic for them, just not during the period of time                where you keep hitting the same wall and you can't get past it.

4.  You Keep Drawing No Matter What
  • I don't care if it looks like a piece of crap, you keep drawing.  Keep with the basics.  Keep drawing figures and shapes.  Draw still-lifes.  Just keep drawing.  You may feel like you're not breaking through the wall, but if you stop drawing completely your skills will retrograde.  They will get rusty waiting for that inspiration.  And we don't want that.  To stop drawing completely is a death sentence. Do. Not. Stop. No. Matter. What!
Trying to focus on my figure drawing

Did some silhouettes for a future project

If there is any topic you wish me to discuss, or any questions that you would like answers to please respond in the comments and I will blog about them!

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