Last night I hung out with some of my favorite crafty people at Blue House for one of the Makers Mark seminars they have been putting on in recent months. One of the topics we kept coming back to was the people who say “I am not creative”, but then show us amazing things they have made. There is a big difference in being creative and running a creative business. And while few may be a Leonardo da Vinci I think everyone has the ability to be creative. For some it comes naturally, but most of us have to nurture it and help it grow.
Here are some of my tips to helping to tap your creative side. They may seem like common sense, but it doesn’t hurt to say them again.
- Have fun! This is probably the most important tip. If you try knitting and don’t enjoy it try something else. If you don’t like collage move on. There is a lot of trial and error in finding the craft you like. If you aren’t having fun don’t force yourself to continue.
- Finish a project. This may seem like a contradiction to the first tip, but trust me on this. If you find something you enjoy, but don’t think it is turning out the way you want to push on through to the end. Some of the things I have been the most unhappy with have been the ones that get the most positive reaction. Very few of us get it perfect the first time out, but you need to learn from your mistakes. If you don’t make mistakes then you can’t grow. An example is that I have taken lots(and I mean lots) of bad pictures to get to taking good ones, but I had so much fun with the camera I kept doing.
- Surround yourself with creative people. The more I am around other artists the more I want to get home and get in to the craft room. Creativity inspires creativity.
- Take a class. If something sounds like fun see if any of the community colleges, art centers or community centers offer art classes. The ones in my area offer everything from bookmaking, sewing to glass blowing.
- Hit the books. Still not sure where to start? Check out the library for art and craft books to see what you can find. Flip through the books see what calls to you.
As you continue it gets easier. Finish one project and it may spark ideas for a new project, sort of like kids building blocks. Tomorrow I will put together a list of some of the books and sites that inspire me.