Increase your motivation for creating art

Sherry Bezanson of the Ladysmith Arts Council offers six ideas to up your motivation in her Community Art Showcase column.

Some artists live at full-throttle production, but most hit times where creativity wanes and there is a need to find ways to up the motivation factor.

Having all the supplies ready is a good start, but it is also easy to get stymied and low on inspiration. Here are six simple ways to shift things, increase your creative vision and ultimately production:

• One of the main things one can do to get in the mood is to just show up in your studio, or your space — whatever your art “room” is. The making corner or table is the source of inspiration for many of us. You might want to include a bulletin board or inspirational art altar to induce the creative muse of your choice.

• It is important to reduce the pressure you feel to make a brilliant piece every time you sit down to create. Lower your expectations, and if your are on a frustration roll, allow some canvases to sit for a while; if three months pass and you still can’t summon any vitality to finish that piece, it might be time to paint over it or send it to the thrift store.

• Submit your work to the monthly gallery exhibits with the Arts Council. Having a deadline date and a topic of intrigue to spark enthusiasm can be a highly motivating factor.

• Keep a small art journal or sketchbook on you at all times to jot down or draw ideas. Whether you are outside or inside, a place to catch initial creative ideas is invaluable. Once famous, this journal could be worth something too!

• Create a support network of fellow artists, aspiring or arrived, and make the time to connect and co-create. Having others that provide guidance or encouragement can keep your creative channels open and aroused. This could be an online workshop or in-person meetings.

It is guaranteed that just one of these ideas can begin to shift your creative pleasures. Try them all, perhaps on rotating weeks, and see how things transpire.

Oh, and did you notice that number six is missing? Ahh, good work — just seeing if you are awake.

Number six involves turning off the TV and computer! This will quickly open up the creative neural pathways and build up your artistic intelligence. Stopping TV and computer use will not only free up your time, but it will also foster a full engagement in life, rather than withdrawal from it. You will tap into those dusty edgy artistic corners of brain, and your creative brilliance will shine through.