Sunday, September 14, 2008


I seem to be going through a very lean period when it comes to producing art.

I can't seem to wrap my mind around any significant projects or settle down to really get at anything. I have lots of sketches which keeps my hand in practice, but inspiration for something more significant just doesn't seem to be there for the last couple of weeks.

This also flows over into my blog as well. Its as if I have run out of words and meaninful ideas. I know that everyone reaches this 'wall' now and then and it can be frustrating. I've accepted the fact that I'm on a 'go slow' until inspiration hits me again.

But I want to be past this. I want to become absorbed in a drawing or painting, but the more I try, the more fleeting it becomes.

I've tried browsing the blogs I enjoy and new ones to help inspire me.
I've flipped through art magazines
I've looked at videos about art techniques
I've sketched with less used mediums to see if the newness of them will help

I know I will get past this, its just painfully slow. So I will ignore it. I'll work on other creative projects such as my jewelry and perhaps some knitting. Then hope that inspiration will return.


Deborah Ross said...

I'm going through exactly the same thing. It's frustrating, isn't it? But I know things will change and then we can be back in our normal state. Hang in there!

Jo Castillo said...

Sometimes you just do something "anti" art. Go fishing, gardening, sightseeing, shopping, etc.....

Hope you get back soon. Love the sketch. :)

Jan said...

I'm in that mode right now myself. It's indeed very frustrating and I want out! I have little interest in painting right now but I'm making myself do a very small pastel on a new (for me) support. It's not causing the creative juices to flow more than a trickle but at least I'm keeping my hand in.

Please let me know what you do to get going again!

Anonymous said...

Seems like an epidemic. I'm working to get out of mine; I have lots of ideas, but have trouble getting them to my hand.

Reading Twyla Tharp's "The Creative Habit" (highly recommend), I've just finished the chapter on Ruts & Grooves. She suggests something I've found helpful (though maybe not the complete answer): movement.

"The chemistry of the body is inseparable from the chemistry of the brain. Movement can stimulate......." and "Movement/physical activity are how we stay in touch with our body - and the body is how we stay in touch with the outside world. Anything that puts our instrument through it's paces has to improve us, make us sharper, more connected to the world."

Since reading that, when I feel myself falling into the rut, I do a quick 10 minute activity: jumping jacks, push-ups, put on a great song and dance like nobody's watching, whatever it takes to get the blood rolling and heart pumping. Works every time to get me back on track.

Although, in order for me to get back on track, I need to have a focus or idea. When I'm lost without an idea, I'll try to straight copy a famous painting but then change something like put my dog in it, or paint everything in complimentary colors.

Just throwing out ideas, here. Someone once told me during a dry spell that my creative juices were just taking a long running start to take a big leap. :)
Hang in there and know we're with you!!

Jeanette said...

Yep it sure is frustrating Deborah. I'm usually brimming over with 'things' but just nada, zip, nothing lately!

Thanks for the encouragement Jo. You're right, something different may do the trick.

Wow, it really is wider spread than I thought Jan. Here I was thinking I was the only one in the universe in a slump. I'll be sure to share the pivotal point that turns it around, if I find it.

You too huh Tracy...epidemic for sure... Perhaps its a seasonal thing

I do the exercise thing. I'm back into running again - C2K program. I'm on the treadmill at 5:30am trying to think of something new to draw or paint as my body goes into numb mode from the running. :)

Good ideas though Tracy, I've taken to sketching pieces from other artists at night hoping they'll inspire me onwards.

I need...I need a visit to a really good gallery or museum maybe. I'll have to wander in the Rooms and see what they can offer to me.

I have to teach a class tonight, heaven help them lol. But you never know, it might get me going too.

Anonymous said...

Not sure if it is good to know that many are going through this. I do believe our minds are creating however we just are not able to view the results yet. Just you wait for the blossoms to bloom.

Katherine Tyrrell said...

When I'm stuck on a blog post I always go for a walk down to the shops and back again - it always does the trick - and I do think exercise really helps.

Here's another solution which works for me. Sometimes your brain just wants a rest - so give it an official holiday - a specific period with an end date. Don't try to be creative in that time - even on other things - and I think you might be surprised how soon the creativity urge begins to itch.