5 Ways to Break Your Artist’s Rut

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One of the things that makes us stuck in life is doing the same thing, every day, nonstop. Wake up, go to work, responsibilities, bed. Wash, rinse and repeat. You ever feel like the older you get, the shorter the years feel? Now, I’m only a millennial, but I do think that this year has been extremely short compared to 2010. So, taking this back to my previous point, if years feel shorter, and we’re spending that year working and providing, where does that leave us? Unhappy? I’m sure. As if the year has been squandered? Definitely so.

I decided to do things a little different. As a creative, I get my best ideas out of experiences and doing! So you know what, I changed my city scenery and traded it for a farm.

And holy cow, it was awesome!

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Really! Holy COW!

Again, I’m a city girl, so all of this was brand new. The environment was totally different, from the air to the clouds… and the occasional whiff of manure.

My friends took me apple picking for the first time! I went pumpkin picking for the first time! I took a day where I enjoyed the fresh air and allowed exploration and adventure to unfurl as I wandered through a corn maze. I petted a freaking ALPACA! For the first. Time!

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It was so freaking fluffy!

I say this because not only as creatives, but as people we just need a day to get out of the studio. Doing so refreshes our routine and breaks the monotony. It creates bonds with others, memories, things we can take back home and enrich our lives. Being in a new environment, even just for a day can do wonders for the mind and soul.

So here are 5 tips to break the monotony:

  • Experience some place new. Even if this means taking the funds out to make a small trip for the future. Do it. You won’t regret it.
  • Do something new/learn a new skill. Are you a terrible cook? Found a place hosting low-stress cooking classes? Jump on it!
  • Spend time with people. I know. Illustration is a lonely job. Call someone up for a coffee or tea date. Let the conversation spin off. I personally need time to recharge after being around people for extended periods of time. But that’s the same way with being alone.
  • Unplug. Seriously. It’s hard as heck to get off the phone. Especially my generation, but turn the phone off, maybe leave it home for a few hours, walk around your area and be present. Become aware of your surroundings.
  • Look Locally. Cities are skyrocketing with go local mentality! Check in your area’s newspaper, art stores, small businesses and online for fliers about upcoming events. I decided to take my own advice and something amazing happened.

BONUS: Look for a store you’ve never been to before! Explore it, talk to people! Especially if it’s a local shop.

Switching up my environment was just what I needed. Apple picking, pumpkin picking, and tasting those deliciously crisp Fuji apples I picked all on my own inspired me to create this piece.

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How have you broken your artist rut? Share your experiences below!

 

~PK

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