|A Self-Portrait of Anna|
“Start where you are, use what you have, do what you can.” –Arthur AsheThat blank, white canvas is sometimes terrifying. Remembering this quote helps me to calm down and to maintain perspective. It causes me to look around me, to think about the real talents or ideas or resources that I have to draw from when beginning a project, and to have proper expectations for the timetable of its completion, and the quality of the results.
Claim a space for your creativity.As a mother, I often have to drop what I’m doing at a moments notice, not knowing when I’ll have another minute to start again. Having my own space means I can leave things out so I can jump right in whenever I can. Having to clean off the kitchen table every afternoon before dinner takes precious time away and means I have to pull it all out again. Make your creativity a priority by giving yourself the room, convenience and resources you need.
Research, research, research.Looking at lots of images or reading different styles of writing helps you to figure out what your tastes are, and gives you direction for your work. It also helps you to refine your taste as you pick up on things and learn from other creatives around you. Just as scientists shouldn’t try to reinvent the wheel, learn what’s out there so you can contribute to the world. If you’re in a rut, pull up Pinterest, your favorite blog, or work from a creative person you look up to. I personally love Pinterest because it allows me to organize my inspirations.
Create now, curate later.Try to not worry about something being perfect. Just start with something that makes you excited, and see what comes out at the end. To help you start, set a goal for a certain amount of time you’ll spend each day or a target number of completed projects you want to do. After you’ve made a bunch of things, look them over and exercise quality control then. You can’t always be on your A game. Throw out the things that you aren’t proud of and admire the wonderful work you’ve made and want to frame. I often have to do this with my work. It is so much better to have made something and not have it turn out than to worry and worry and never begin.