Outside The Lines

Fun readings about Color, Art and Segmation!

3 Ways to “Unblock” Yourself Artistically

September 6, 2016 Jessica 0 Comments

Image via pixabay.com

Image via pixabay.com

Are you an artist? If so, you’ve undoubtedly experienced the frustration of a creative dry spell or two (or two dozen). Creative blocks are encountered fairly regularly by nearly every artistic person.  How do you unblock yourself artistically?  For example, songwriters temporarily lose the ability to effortlessly write good songs. Painters are just not able to create magic with their brushes. Illustrators cease to create engaging characters and drawings that capture the imagination.

The question is not “will I, an artist, experience creative blocks?” The question IS “what will I do when I can’t seem to create my art with ease? How will I get back on my game quickly?”

If you need some help devising ways to artistically unblock yourself and get your creative juices flowing, read on.

3 Ways to Unblock Yourself Artistically

1. Craft an Inspiration File – Of everything you can do to get out of an artistic block (or prevent one), creating an inspiration file may be the most effective. An inspiration file is a tool that prompts brainstorming. To make an inspiration file, designate a location that you can store images that inspire you in. Lori McNee, writer for artbistro.monster.com, wrote, “It (the inspiration file) can be a moleskin sketch book, an accordion file or a file on your computer. Every time you find something that inspires you or intrigues you, throw it in your inspiration file. It can be a moleskin sketch book, an accordion file or a file on your computer. When you’re getting ready to brainstorm new ideas, pull out your artistic inspiration file and go to town. Reorganize it based on different criteria, such as color or content or style. Look for ideas in how these images fall together. Pick one image and make up a story about it.” If you can carve out the time to create an inspiration file, you can get yourself out of a creative rut.

2. Stop judging yourself – Imagine that a child brings his or her teacher a newly created piece of art. Instead of pointing out the good in the art, the teacher says, “This is not nearly good enough. You could have done better. Go and throw this away and give it another try!” How do you think the budding artist would respond? He or she would shut down and possibly never create art again. If you’ve shut down creatively, there’s a chance it’s because you judge yourself too harshly. Maybe you have been making sub-par art lately. So what? Perhaps you can build on the art and make it into the best you’ve ever created. If you want to unblock yourself creatively, keep self-criticism to a minimum. This may be the secret to keeping writer’s/painter’s/sculptor’s block at bay in the future.

3. Make creative use of the dictionary – The dictionary can be an amazingly helpful tool to an artist. McNee, mentioned above, suggests flipping to a random page and choosing a random word, then repeating the process several times. She wrote, “Eventually, you’ll start building a list of random words. Do any of them naturally fit together? Do they create an image in your mind? What do they have in common?”

Image via pixabay.com

A great way to stir up your creative capacity is to engage in any type of artistic activity. Just one option is to give our digital paint-by-number mobile app a try. This app combines the best of modern technology with old-school artistic charm. Learn more about SegPlay Mobile today!

How do you resolve creative blocks? Share with us in the “comments” section below.

Read more Segmation blog posts about art and color:

3 Children’s Books with Impossibly Beautiful Illustrations

Artist Benjamin Shine Makes Art from Unusual Mediums

Books EVERY Artist Should Read

Be an Artist in 2 minutes with Segmation SegPlay® PC (see more details here)


SegPlay® Mobile available for iPhone and iPad




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