I recently published a Q&A post on my Instagram page prompting my followers to ask me any art related questions. One of my followers asked, ” What inspires you to create art when you reach that point of no inspiration?” This ‘point of no inspiration’ is a challenge many artists face, often referred to as ‘Artist Block’.
Artist Block happens when an artist doesn’t feel motivated or inspired to create art. The artist either doesn’t have any idea of what to create, or their ideas may not impress them enough to pick up a pencil or paintbrush. This stops them from producing anything. Hence the inclusion of the word “block” in the term.
The idea of Artist Block is very controversial in the art realm. Some artists will say Artist Block is definitely real, and that they have experienced it many times throughout their life. While others will say that it isn’t real, and that it is just an excuse for being lazy.
My view on Artist Block
I believe Artist Block is real, and may be different for every artist. I have experienced many moments where I’ve felt stuck creatively, and uninspired. When I experience this feeling, I look for inspiration from outer sources. I feel this may be a sign that I need to get out of my own head for a moment. So, I turn to YouTube. I follow many talented creatives on YouTube. Artists of various genres and preferred mediums. I enjoy watching other artists hard at work. For me, it is similar to being in a fitness class and standing still while everyone else is giving their all and breaking a sweat. After a few videos, I usually jump out of bed and start creating something. Anything. At this phase, I try to create without judgment. The effort alone will suffice. My goal at this point is to be artistically productive. I may not feel inspired to start a new ‘masterpiece’ painting, so I reach out to other mediums, such as drawing, photography, or design. This may last for a while, but it doesn’t last forever. In the meantime, I am always creating something. Then, I am randomly inspired to create that ‘masterpiece’. It is as if I have inspired myself by creating in other mediums. This is one of the reasons I have began to love being a multidisciplinary artist.
An artist is not doomed if he/she only works in one medium. There are many methods artists can use to conquer Artist Block. Here’s a list of a few that come to mind.
Methods for conquering Artist Block
Visit an art exhibition
Read a book or art magazine
Write in your journal
Bask in nature
Cook something you’ve never cooked before
Watch videos of artists at work
Work in a new medium
Draw in a style that is different from your own
Listen to a motivational speaker
What is your view on Artist Block?
What remedies do you use when dealing with Artist Block?