Hello my wonderful friends!
As I was trying to figure out what to share with you today, I found I was in quite a creative block. I had no ideas. I sat in the middle of my studio surrounded by stamps, brushes, paint, paper, inks, and all the other creative elements that usually inspire me to create magic, and instead I felt completely adrift in an ocean of blank canvases.
I wanted to lose myself in a book, pick berries, solve logic puzzles, learn computer programs... anything but create my magic.
What causes those creative blocks? Those frustrating times when you want to tear out your hair, throw in the towel, or start chucking random art supplies out the window?
Well, I think there are a lot of reasons that people in all the creative fields run into creative blocks, and they are probably as individualized as is each person. A better question to ask may be..
WHAT AM I GOING TO DO ABOUT IT?
Here is what I suggest:
1. Figure out if there is an obvious trigger, and what you can do about it.
Maybe you are really stressed out and need to find a way to relax. Maybe you have a perfectionist streak that is holding you back, or a fear that your work won't be good enough (never let fear stop art!!!). Maybe you have been working at a particular thing for too long and need a break.
Personally, I need to clean my studio and do some reorganizing. I am a bit OCD in my crafting, and as I look around my studio right now, I realize that may have been a contributing factor to why I have been having such a hard time focusing, and why the back of my mind has been giving me a severe case of "organization cravings" (when all I want to do is come up with new ways to organize a space.... ok, so "a bit OCD" may be a slight understatement LOL!)
2. Take a breather! It may just be that you are trying to force the creativity too hard... or maybe you just need to step away from your stamp table for a day and take in some sunshine. It can do wonders to think about some thing totally non related for an entire 24 hrs!
3. Let yourself play. Give yourself some time to just mess around with your supplies. Try things out... Don't worry about what it looks like, or the end result. Don't get caught up in if it looks good. Just let yourself realize it may never be seen by anyone but you. It is very freeing to just relax and play. It frees the mind to think outside your typical comfort zone.
4. Try something NEW. A new technique, a new product, a new media, a new color... Creative ruts aren't all that different from creative blocks, and the only cure for creative ruts are to shake things up! If you always find yourself using bright blues and greens, challenge yourself to make a project using dusty pinks and browns. Or if you always use shabby chic, try you hand at bright and bold. Bears can be purple, ducks can be green, and trees can be hot pink. Ask any 4 yr old. They never have creative ruts! :)
5. Don't give up, don't pull your hair out, (it hurts!), and don't chuck your art supplies out the window (you will probably want them later)! Persistence is key to success. Everyone has creative blocks. They come and go. Just don't give up when they hit!
Now, I'm not going to leave you without a little tutorial here. :)
How about a fun way to use your stencils for a softer background?
This is how we often use stencils... with a sponge and paint... right? Well, let's try something different. :)
Lets put some paint on a stamp... texture stamps work best.
Now, stamp over the stencil onto the paper.
Look at that! You get the same fabulous design, but it's softer... broken up by the texture of the stamp. Fun, huh!
I used it as the back ground for a "thank you card".
Here's a close up of the double texture you get... This works with ink too...
but because I used Creative Inspiration paint, it's all shimmery in the light (almost like a third secret texture! awesome, huh!!!)
Ink: Memento, Distress Ink
Stamps: Glitz "Distressing", Great Impressions "Butterfly Frame", Inkadinkado "Petals from Scratch"
Creative Inspirations Paint: Tanzanite
Silhouette: Quatrefoil Screen, Silhouette Flower
Other: acrylic paint