I subscribe to the Lyric Kinard newsletter and loved this post from her about creative slump……
“When you’re in a Slump, you’re not in for much fun. Un-slumping yourself is not easily done. You will come to a place where the streets are not marked. Some windows are lighted. But mostly they’re darked.” ~ Dr. Seuss
Every once in a while you need a change of pace. You feel that you are in a slump, are feeling blue, or you’re just plain tired. Too many deadlines, too much pressure, too much on your plate. You feel creatively blocked. It happens to the best of us once in a while.
I believe it’s part of the process and part of life. Energy and enthusiasm can wax and wane.
It’s what you do with yourself once you hit that slump that matters.
The block of granite which was an obstacle in the pathway of the weak becomes a stepping stone in the pathway of the strong. ~Thomas Carlyle
Go for a long walk. Breathe. Look up at the sky. Notice beautiful fallen leaves or fascinating cracks in the sidewalk. Take your camera. Getting out of your narrow environment and looking at the wider world can work wonders.
Try something new. Take a class in an unfamiliar medium. If you are struggling with portraiture, try a wild abstract. If your usual palette is earth tones, do a quick exercise using only saturated brights. If you only machine quilt, pick up a scrap of cloth and some embroidery thread and randomly stitch by hand for a bit.
Clean your space. Methodically clear the clutter away and make space for new ideas and new projects. You will find materials you had forgotten that will inspire you. Cleaning might also become more unpleasant than the making of art – so you’ll want to get back to it.
Wait. Sometimes, it is best to just wait it out – Continue to just keep doing. Let the ideas stew in your subconscious. Studies of creative people show that many brilliant ideas come not during the period of intense study, but in the quiet resting time afterwards when the ideas have had time to mix and mull in the unconscious.
Stop. Sometimes, if you are still blocked, it is time to make a change and leave what you were doing.
There is the possibility that you will emerge a different, a better artist. Don’t wallow or fret – slumping may be a natural part of your growth process. Look up, look out, grow!
I’d love to hear what you do to “un-slump” yourself.
All my best wished to you!
Lyric Kinard, Artist, Author, and educator, can be found at www.LyricKinard.com.
You can sign up for her monthly newsletter there.
© 2011 Lyric Montgomery Kinard. All rights reserved.