You have a blank piece of paper, canvas and the thought you want to create something, but where do you start? Being creative is harder than you think, but there are things you can do to get the creative juices flowing.

how to be creative

Doodling towards creativity

Just start scribbling. The first idea is rarely the best, just keep scribbling and let the idea fester, play with it over a period of time. As you close your eyes on the pillow play with the idea in your mind, next day it could be the greatest idea in the world.  Remember if it goes nowhere it is not the end of the world, but it might suggest the beginning of a new adventure.

To be truly inspired, you have to learn to trust your instincts. Don’t keep re-drawing an idea too much or planning a painting down to every intricate detail, otherwise you’ll get bored with it and everyone who looks at your finished work will probably feel the same. Remember, hard work is important, but it’s not as important as inspiration. Sometimes start the final work with only a vague idea of how it will turn out and let the painting ‘talk’ to you as you create it. But, listen to what it has to say.

If you are really stuck for ideas, don’t think of anything to do with art. Let your mind wander, observe people in the street, watch films, read books, comics, newspapers, look at the gestures people use when interacting, queuing, eating, whatever. Take these everyday things, make notes about them use them as a starting point and doodle, let your mind day dream and ponder on them.

Sometimes try to write down your ideas instead of drawing them. Be very brief, concise and direct. look at the phrases and do a David Bowie. Apparently, he would produce a long list of words, cut them up and scatter them, randomly picking them up and working on what the unique combinations suggested to hem. Don’t over-complicate things. Picasso once said he spent a lifetime trying to learn how to draw and paint like a 5 year old child. Children see the world in simple, straight forward ways, they speak a lot of sense, watch how they work and try to follow their uninhibited methods of self-expression.

At the end of the day don’t be afraid to scrap all your hard work and planning at the last minute and go off in a totally different direction. Don’t be too precious about your idea, it can be hard to ditch it, but, there is always a better idea around the corner for any artist.

I want to be creative, but my mind is blank.

About The Author
- I have taught art for more years than I can remember, in schools and with own art courses. I hope you find this art tutorial, stimulating, easy to follow and that it contributes, in a small way, to the development of your own art skills. Paul Priestley

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