Thursday, February 26, 2009


I think my muse is on vacation in the tropics somewhere, or maybe she prefers Alaska. I have so many themes to work with, and lots of them Celtic which is a favorite of mine, but my creative drive has sort of fizzled. Inversely, my drive to exercise, eat well and get in shape so I feel better has ... well, showed up after a three-year hiatus. Is there a connection? Like, testosterone up and whatever the "creative" hormone is down?

Don't know. So I'm going to brainstorm ideas at you to get me jump started.

1) Play. Get out beads, wire, rings, pretty rocks, and see what happens. Sometimes just staring at the sparklies gets me moving.
2) Go to the bead store. I usually see something I like and it gives me ideas. Except I have piles of stuff from past strokes of inspiration that isn't inspiring me anymore. *sigh*
3) Journal. If you're an artist who gets blocked sometimes, or you wish you were an artist, I highly recommend The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron. Or if you're not sure where you are in the stream of your life. It was/is a life-changing book for me. She recommends journaling every day as a way to clear the every day crap that's blocking your creative urges. I haven't been.
4) Sketch. This one's actually almost laughable because my drawing skills are almost nil (one of those things I comfort myself with believing I could be better if I'd spend time on it). Maybe that's not the way to go. Maybe I should paint with watercolors or even finger paints.
5) Walk alone, preferably in the woods. Nature speaks if you're quiet enough to listen.
6) Look at pretty pictures. I look at pictures of others' work that is similar to mine every day, and it often inspires me. But sometimes looking at amazing photography or paintings I like has the same effect, and it inspires me in a different way. Since I have a "Springtime in the Glen" theme to work with for Fantasy Artists of Etsy Exhibition, and Emerald Isle for Wire Artisans guild, I may peruse some knotwork and Celtic art.
7) Follow a tutorial. Whatever it is usually doesn't come out the same as the original in the instructions. I guess that qualifies as inspiration? Maybe I'll play with a new chainmaille weave.

What do you do when the muse goes south?


Follow The Red Brick Road... said...

When my muse goes on vacation (right now I think mine is in Alaska with yours, lol) I switch to another type of artwork or craft for a while. Often doing another type of art will inspire me with all of them. I'm kind of ADHD with arts/crafts. I spin/knit/weave/crochet/draw/paint/sculpt/macrame/collage/refinish furniture/carve, lol. And the list goes on, because I'm sure I've forgotten some things. Right now, I'm totally uninspired with the jewelry, for some reason. But I've started to learn how to do henna tattoos, and I'm SO feeling that right now. I spent hours yesterday with a black fineline marker drawing different, very intricate, henna designs. I'm doing my best to try to figure out a way to translate traditional henna patterns into jewelry, lol. The paisley thing has been done, but I may have to re-do it, Marcy style!

And, if you think you can't draw, I recommend learning henna, because it's literally tiny designs that you repeat to make an awesome pattern. I can't believe the awesome stuff I'm doing, just by combining different basic patterns!

Youvegotmaille said...

Henna sounds awesome. I want to try a seed beaded peyote henna choker. And I think playing with other stuff is an excellent idea. Thanks Marcy :)

Anne said...

When the muse is on vacation I force myself to sit quietly and make loads of earwires and clasps. That takes concentration and you know you have done something useful! But it does not work all the time, so I drag out some books of antiques or histories of vikings (you get the drift)or even pictures of Japanese flower arrangements. The idea is to scrutinize and visualize how any given picture might translate into wire work! it helps.


Jennifer said...

What great suggestions.

I just bought The Artist's Way, but haven't gotten into it yet. I don't think of myself as an artist, so I felt funny even buying the book!

I think working with other materials and / or different methods is a awesome. I took a weaving class and it was so fun. It changed the way I looked at my yarn stash.

Good luck finding your muse. At least you are spending your time getting healthy instead of wallowing in your creative block :-)

Anonymous said...

I keep a journal where I paste pictures of colorful outfits, jewelry designs and anything of inspiration cut out of magazines, kinda like a scrapbook...(all are sectioned for color, one for design, etc.) when the muse heads south, the book comes out!

Chrisy said...

Thanks sooo much for sharing your tips on getting the artistic mojo back...and if you see my muse send her on home please...

Deronda designs... said...

Sometimes at the torch, I just have to take two colors and see what I can do. Not sure why, but sometimes less creates more.

David Western Lovespoons said...

Working with something else is good for me, too, and I just get my sketch book out and pick something to draw and then something else and then something else and then something else and eventually this almost always busts out the logjam. Once in awhile nothing will do, and then I just have to walk away for awhile and take in other people's creativity: a movie, a book, a walk to look at things outside myself.