It’s inevitable. There are times when our creative lives hit a slow down. The good news is it’s easier than you think to kickstart it again.
In this week’s post we’ll look at how to use the 8 Creative Habits to take small but powerful steps forward in all the important areas of our creative practice.
In the first part of this series, we looked at 8 Vital Creative Habits and the frequency with which we engage with each one.
In this second part, we’re going to use the 8 Habits to take some baby steps towards creative growth.
8 Habits Baby Steps Exercise
Grab your journal or sketchbook or a few blank sheets of paper and jot down answers to the following prompts:
1. Develop your skills: How can you strengthen your skill base?
=> What baby step you could take to initiate this?
2. Follow Your Fascinations: How can you be more persistent?
We all know when we're copping out and not giving something our best.
=> What small steps will you take now?
3. Visualise: What will DONE look like?
=> Where can you write down your reasonable and measurable objectives so that you’ll see them when you work on your project?
4. Express Yourself: Naturally!
We're artists, we express ourselves right? The answer isn't always a resounding yes.
All sorts of factors can get in the way of self-expression - from fear to market forces and the need to make a living.
It's crucial to set aside a regular time for creating just for yourself. This needn't be in your usual medium - the goal here is to let your feelings out not 'make art'.
You don’t need masses of time to make this happen.
=> Can you find a five minute daily slot to create something just for you?
5. Observe: Look Around You
Observing means something different to every artist:
What do you need to look at?
=> What small action will begin to make that possible?
6. Reflect and Evaluate: Look Within
If we don't reflect we can't grow.
What’s your reflective practice?
How regularly do you practise it? If you don't, why not?
It’s not that hard! You’ve already done it for today by answering these questions ;)
=> How will you reflect tomorrow?
7. Get Out of Your Comfort Zone: Take a risk
Sometimes our groove gets a little too comfy.
Those things that scare us, they make us bigger people don't they? That doesn't mean we wouldn't rather hide under the duvet than do them.
What is the thing that you know you need to engage with in order to grow towards your personal source of sunlight?
=> What teeny-weeny action would start that process. Go on!
8. Interact with your Creative Sphere: See Real Art (Read Good Books)
Pinterest, YouTube, Flickr, Tumblr - we love 'em.
But you can't experience the visceral difference between a piece of digital art and a wall-sized oil painting by looking at them both on a tiny screen.
There's no substitute for getting out and seeing art up close.
It needn't be the latest must-see exhibition in a major capital; visiting your
friend's studio will do nicely.
When you look at art in the 'flesh', you can't help but learn.
The same goes for reading (and I'm not talking paperback v. Kindle here); reading someone's blog (even mine!) is no substitute for a well-written book.
=> Commit to experiencing some real art in whatever medium. Go book it!
Want more 8 Habits?
I’ve expanded these crucial 8 aspects of creative practice into an eBook to help you develop a full 8 Habit Plan for Creative Growth.