How to Overcome a Creative Block

Amanda Quach and Edited by Valerie Alcala

We all know that feeling when you’ve been pumping out essay after essay or project finals on top of project finals to make ends meet before summer break that you sometimes forget how to make your own rules and be creative. Everyone goes through this, even the most creative person you know goes through this, so it’ll be okay. Here are a few ways to get over this small bump in the road and back on track for writing that story you’ve been wanting to write or painting that picture you’ve been wanting to paint and beyond:

Remember Your Roots

A classic way artists get a handle on their talent and remember how to do what they know best before trying something completely out of their comfort zone is practicing a version of their best work. Going back and redoing, or revamping, a version of previous work you’ve done before (that you know will be successful) is the best way to get in the groove of your skill and feel confident in your work. (ex: You have no idea how to use oil paints and you’re feeling defeated, go back to acrylic and later on apply your knowledge to where it can help when it comes to a new medium, like oil)

Apply the skills you already have in another area when trying something new! Image courtesy of Google Images.

Have a Friend Choose Your Subject

If you’re running out of ideas and have no clue how to begin a new personal project, something I like to do is ask my friends to choose the main components that are featured in my art. I will then try my best in creating what goes on around these components to make the entire piece cohesive and original. (ex: You’ve been trying to write a short story, but have no creative flow. Ask your friend to give you a few things to incorporate into your story, like a character or object, and write around these subjects to make something new.)

Don’t be afraid to ask for help! Some of the best work is done when multiple minds come together to create a masterpiece. Image courtesy of Google Images.

Look Around

A good, yet simple solution to a creative block is to look at the world around you. Whether it’s something you see in nature or something mentioned on tv, creating art from simple things can have bigger, more unique outcomes. (ex: You have the urge to draw something new, but can’t get a handle on just what. Go on social media and just read the news or look at a friends picture they just posted. Find the first thing you think of when you see something and draw it.)

Inspiration does not always have to come from within. If you take time to look around you will find that almost anything can be your muse. Image courtesy of Google Images.