The Art of Dealing with Art Block
Something every artist comes across is the curse of the art block. May it be because you cannot think of anything to draw, or because you are just burnt out from routinely doing art, we all feel it eventually. I thought that I would share a few tips that I use to get around my art blocks.
My first tip is to just take a break. This may seem pretty obvious, but I see a lot of artists pushing themselves to do art every day and multiple times a day. Even if that is what you want to do, a break will help you in the long run by delaying burnout and also allow you to keep some good ideas for later when you are feeling better. I sometimes take a week in between sessions to get the creative juices flowing.
If you truly feel the need to create, but suffer from art block, try drawing/painting something you’ve already done. For me, I recreate the restaurant, Casa Bonita, in different styles when I am having a tough time coming up with ideas. Doing this helps me by trying different techniques and getting back into the swing of things. It is also fun to do because then you can have a nice little portfolio of one subject done in a variety of different styles/mediums.
My next suggestion would be to try something new entirely. Something that I do is switch mediums frequently to always have a new challenge, but also test out new styles. Sticking with one medium for a while can drain your energy as it begins to lose its magic the more you do it without change. Instead of doing watercolor, maybe try doing oil pastels.
My final tip does not apply to all artists, but it is something I deal with. The tip is to remember that art is for fun. If you ever begin selling your work, the idea that art is for fun can begin to slip away. It is a tough battle to keep the enjoyment while also doing commissions and such. All of the above tips can help combat this, but it takes a lot of determination to keep art from becoming work.
These are all tips that I frequently use in my day to day with art. All of these tips may not work 100% for you specifically, but they are worth trying if you ever begin to feel drained doing art. Art is supposed to be a fun thing to do in your free time, so don’t let it end up being a slog.