One of the things that plagues me regularly is wondering what to draw or paint. I worry that if I am not particularly inspired then perhaps I am not actually all that creative. But I am realising that inspiration is everywhere. And deep down I believe that every one of us is creative.
But doubt inevitably creeps in. I think it is part of the process. And it is not so much that I am not 'inspired'. I think it is more about a fear of not being able to make something lovely out of that inspiration.
So the plan is to 'feel the fear and do it anyway'. Let go of needing to make something lovely. Sometimes making something is enough in its own right. The process is often worth so much more than the final product.
The other day I found an enchanting photograph of a sunflower on Instagram. I have to be honest - sunflowers are not exactly my favourites because I often see them in their later stages of life and it is that picture that unfortunately sticks in my mind. Giant stalks with bedraggled leaves. Dry and brown, heavy with seed. I am so pleased to have found a far more hopeful image which will hopefully replace the one to which my mind has been defaulting!
The sunflower looked happy and hopeful and like it needed a face (currently every flower I look it seems to need a face drawn on it!). The other thing that the photo I saw inspired me to do was to use up the white space. As much as I have been enjoying the white space around my little flowers, I liked the change of dropping in a nice textured background. So much fun splashing in lots of lovely greens, extra clean water and even a bit of salt. Voila. Flower face Number 9.
So if you are having a spot of trouble feeling inspired (or scared to put pencil to paper - which I am thinking is basically the same thing) here are a few strategies to try:
- Pick the first thing that comes to mind and draw lots and lots of them. Just doodle loads of cats/flowers/tea cups - whatever you think of first. The more of them you draw, the more variations you will think of because as I have found, ideas come from ideas
- Take a class. If you don't know what to draw then let a teacher tell you. Allow yourself to be inspired by the teacher as well as your fellow class mates. One cautionary note, if I may - be inspired by these people, but do not compare yourself with them. Only misery can follow that...
- Choose a masterpiece that you love and copy it. Leonardo da Vinci said, " If one knows how to copy, one knows how to do". Its ok. You have permission from da Vinci. Go ahead and copy.
- Productively surf your social media faves.... visual cues bombard us - choose to notice which ones are speaking to your muse. You might just find a lovely picture of a sunflower to draw.
Looking for more inspiration? Check out the rest of the Flower Face Series.