make art. transform life.

thoughts about creativity and  art:   live your life as your work of art.

No time to be creative?

If only I had enough time. Do you ever find yourself saying that to yourself? That is what I said when the three boys were little, and part of me didn’t want that time to end.

I painted pictures with them in between making Halloween costumes and cookies, parties and putting bandaids on knees.

We read books a together and we were  a happy audience when they put on plays for us!

When they were in elementary school and middle school, I took my sketchpad to games, although sometimes I didn’t get it open.

I always carried pencils, a  favorite pen and my crayons in my bottomless pocketbook. Many times I watched the game and improved my visual memory by drawing from what I remembered later.

I worked at my job, teaching art. We made pizzas and cakes from scratch, loaves of bread, read books and had family discussions about the state of rest f the world.

Yes, and I dragged them to art museums, plays and music lessons of all kinds.

I am still teaching art to 580 students every week, and loving it!.When I teach, it nurtures my art and when I do my art it makes me a better teacher. I am always looking for time to make more of my own work.

And now it is the summer.

All the time in the world to paint, right?

Wrong. Sometimes I get creative block. Everyone gets it once in a while.

So, I  attempt to make dealing with  this issue a creative project! I enlist my  sense of humor, compassion and an assortment of creative thinking skills. If i am not up for that, I sometimes take a nap. (Try it. It works.)

Every time I get stuck procrastinating with the fear of making a mark on the white paper, I use diversionary tactics!

  • Outsmart my left brain  and allow room for the intangible creative side. Let’s not take this too seriously, after all, “playing” is one of the 13 creative thinking tools.
  • Integrate and balance other life areas. Make sure to exercise, eat right, read, leave time for spiritual, relationships and taking care of money and job. Limit times and set the alarm.
  • Watch how others do it.  I watch my son compose, sing play and mix music when he has a day off or after work, if he’s not too tired. if he is he sleeps.
  • Read . Many artists are very generous about sharing their methods of getting time to create.
  • Allow myself to do the laundry or vacuum...with a time limit!
  • Drink a glass of water.
  • Take the dogs for a walk. Good thinking time.
  • Put myself in the studio or place that is inspiring, with all of my supplies around me, look at my journals and I can’t help but make something.
  • Don’t judge. Just keep exploring.
  • Oh yes, and work daily for a self determined consistent amount of time. Stop in the middle of the best part! This was one of Hemingway’s secrets. Your mind will keep working on creative ideas  until you return the next day.

I was intrigued by the post on Write to Done guest post “How to Write When You’re Scared Spitless” by the  Jean-Berg-Sarauer.

There is also a very interesting article about another way to increase creativity called The Cure for Creative Blocks? Leave Your Desk. RT(via @the99percent) that is totally awesome!

What do you do when you are stuck and need a new idea?

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