Have you ever wanted to paint or letter but just felt… stuck? That, my friend, is a creative block. You know you can do it. You just feel really ‘meh’ about it!
It isn’t a fun place for any creative to be, so today, I’m sharing 5 things I do whenever I’m stuck. I call them the 5 “RE”s — read on to see why!
1. Refresh (your space)
Okay, this is just a fancy way of telling you to clean up your act!
If you’re anything like me, you you probably have your art supplies stashed in one convenient place. Then you took out a few brush pens. And a few days later, the watercolours come out. Before you know it, everything is strew all over the place!
Sure, it’s organised chaos. You know where everything is. But it’s probably starting to feel slightly suffocating.
It’s time to clean. Scrap pieces go into the recycling bin. Everything else goes back to where it used to be… Which brings me to the second thing:
2. Reorganise (your stash)
I don’t know about you, but I can go for 2-3 months without a massive clean up sometimes, and during that 2-3 months, I end up buying new toys — What? I really wanted to try embossing!
If you have limited space though, cleaning can end up calling for some reorganisation.
While I keep the fancy tools like acrylic paint and embossing powders stashed in a box stool from IKEA under my table, I like to keep my regularly used supplies in sight — and in mind! Things like watercolours, Finetec, pointed pen tools and brush pens are sorted by type into jars and boxes.
(Pro tip: You don’t have to buy boxes or holders specially for storage! Most of my tools go into empty jam jars and Colorpop boxes!)
Staring at the same four walls is a recipe for going stir crazy! No matter how gorgeous and inspirational your space felt the first day you decorated, odds are as time passed, you got bored.
All that inspirational stuff? The quote you stuck on the wall, that gorgeous purple you painted the walls (ugh, 14-year-old Lyssy, why?)… It became the norm and it has faded into the background. After a while, it can even feel suffocating!
The day I painted those purple walls white was like a huge breath of fresh air. Creativity and inspiration everywhere!
Unfortunately, we can’t just change our wall colours with a snap of our magical fingers, so here are a few more mundane ideas:
Move your furniture
One of my tables is a free standing IKEA table top. When I’m feeling stuck, I’ll move it around the room and sit in a different place — or just a different chair!
Change your decor
Change your curtains if your creative corner is near a window. You can also spruce up your space with a vase of flowers or a succulent. It doesn’t even have to be real! There are plenty of places like Daiso that carry realistic looking fake flowers that can brighten up your space! If you’ve the space, new cushions or cushion covers could work too!
Put up your lettering
I’m sure you’ve pieces you’re proud of saved somewhere, so… Why not put them up? There are so many options. You can put them in a frame on the wall. If you don’t like hammering nails, a bit of washi will do the trick. Another possibility is to get a cork board, and change up what you pin every now and then!
Alternatively, you can also put it on a decorative mini easel on your desk — or under a glass tabletop, if you have one!
If all else fails though…
4. Relocate (to a new place)
Alright, sometimes staying in the same space? It just makes you stuck even after trying #allthethings.
If that’s the case, it’s totally alright to abandon your creative corner for a while and work somewhere else to get your juices flowing again.
I’m actually writing this from one of my favourite ‘other’ places for working: the Starbucks near my apartment. I don’t love coffee, but the staff let me sit around for hours and that’s the important part!
The different environment — plenty of white noise and activity compared to my stagnant room — definitely gets me moving.
Lastly, don’t force it. If it doesn’t work, try accessing your creativity differently!
When I’m stuck on a lettering piece, for example, I tend to pull out my Copperplate practice sheets to get into the lettering zone without stressing about design. Or if my florals are looking gross, I may backtrack and do something mundane like painting geometric shapes and watching the paint flow.
The idea is to do something related to your task to recharge and get your creativity going before going back to attempt it again!
How do you break your creative block?
Let me know in the comments below!