Are you suffering from creative burnout? Here’s what you can do. . .

Published Aug. 26th 2013


Sometimes, even creative people can suffer from a lack of ideas. This happens often as an artist is building a following—he/she starts to feel the pressure to create, and the creativity doesn’t come.

It’s important not to get frustrated, but instead to use the opportunity to refresh your inspiration and gain some new ideas for further artworks. Taking a break from your studio, office or usual workplace and changing your environment will help you find new inspirations to express your creativity.

Consider the following tips:

1. Change your environmentGo for a walk, visit a garden, travel somewhere new. Get outside of the four walls where you usually work.

2. Take photographs—Photos are an excellent way of jogging your memory and providing your with a new scene for inspiration. Remember how you felt when you visited that place. Leaf through your photo albums from holidays past.

3. Visit an art gallery—Nothing invigorates an artist more than seeing great works of art. A trip to a local art gallery or museum will provide you with the opportunity to see works completely out of the realm of what you work on yourself. It reminds you that the possibilities for creative development are endless at a time when you are feeling lost. Getting inspired by your favourite artist or artwork, spending time viewing your favourite artworks is always very grounding and inspiring.

4. Meet with other artists—talk about how you deal with creative burnout with other people in your field. More than anything, this will help you cope with natural peaks and troughs in productivity. Spending time with friends is always a welcome way to reaffirm your strengths and remind you that a lapse in creative productivity does not amount to being a failure.

5. Take a break—Do something completely different and non-work related. For creative types, the mind is always open to inspiration, so even doing something you wouldn’t normally do will bring you new ideas and inspiration.

6. Head to the local library—Find writing, art or music that inspires you, or try something you’ve never read before, listened to, or a band you’ve never heard of. Look through art books and read about artists who inspire you.

7. Go to a live concert—See what other creative people do. There’s nothing like appreciating another artist or musician and seeing later how they have influenced you.

8. Relax! Most importantly, try not to get stressed about low points between projects. Often this is not creative burnout at all, but just a natural expelling of creative energy after a long creative project. Learn to enjoy the downtimes between projects where you are free to soak up new inspirations for future projects.

Now go get creative!

Did you like this article? Share it!
Then check out the related posts below.
Taking projects on commission is a great way to earn money and increase your skills as an artist. You will often find yourself working on all kinds of different and unique projects, and will also have the opportunity to learn how to work creatively within client briefs. Commissions come in suc. . . read more
Recently my right to call myself an artist was called into question—and it completely wound me up! I was showing my art at a festival and happened to overhear a lady talking nearby. As she gestured towards my artwork, she stated that she didn't want standards to drop because "they were letting. . . read more
We're all guilty of procrastinating. We look at the painting on the easel and decide we'd rather bake cookies, wash the floor or solve complex mathematical equations on the insides of our eyelids. Fortunately, with a few productivity tricks up your sleeve, you can get out of any creative funk.. . . read more
There are many times as an artist when you might want to take a break from painting. For me, lately, it's because I have some everyday tasks around the studio (organizing, cleaning, etc) that needed to be taken care of. Here are a couple of ideas to have some creative fun while still cleaning . . . read more
Inspiration is an interesting thing for artists. Personally, I get most of my ideas for new painting series randomly, almost out of the blue. . . and I have to write them down immediately because I'm likely to forget if I don't. But anything can spark an idea—a movie, a book, an interesting tu. . . read more
Stay current.
Subscribe to EmptyEasel's free weekly newsletter for artists. Sign up today!
CanvasFlyer
Art Contests
More art contests. . .
EE Writers
Alyice Edrich Cassie Rief Steff Metal Niki Hilsabeck Brandi Bowman Michelle Morris Lisa Orgler Adriana Guidi Carrie Lewis Aletta de Wal Erin SparlerLuke Montgomery

If you'd like to write for EmptyEasel, let us know!

We love publishing reader-submitted art tutorials, stories, and even reviews.Submit yours here!