Finding a Creative Buzz

One of the difficulties with creative activities, whether it’s printmaking or painting, knitting or sewing, calligraphy or writing blogs, is coming up with great ideas and completing a project. The initial ideas need to be exciting enough to spark the project and compelling enough to see it through to a finished piece.

Sometimes we can’t come up with an idea that’s inspirational enough or we give up because we start to question the worth of our project. Katherine explained her lack of recent blog posts: ” … It’s not that I haven’t thought about it – or been without topics to write about. It’s more that I have questioned the whole raison d’être of personal blogs …. the internet seems so crowded … who am I to add to the general digital busyness ….”

I’ve had the same thought many times and my computer is littered with blog posts that aren’t finished because uncertainty has crept in. It’s not a riveting story or filled with useful information. Does the world need another recipe for elderflower cordial or another walk around the farm? Many years ago, I read an online guide about improving your blog but stalled at the first question, which was Why do you blog? I’m not sure I could answer that one even now.

sketchbook with marks, washes and prints

But just recently, I’ve found a new creative buzz for generating ideas. Ruth has devised some new printmaking courses that Beth (with assorted offspring) and I trialled for her. One of the first things we had to do was fill our concertina sketchbooks with washes, spatters, doodles and dribbles of ink. Quite honestly, I could happily have spent all day just doing that.

Sketchbook watercolours on the farm

Next, we were sent to four places on the farm where we had to to make quick sketches. Guess what? Places are far more interesting than you might first think when you look properly!

Farm track viewed through a hole in a gate

Or look differently. Usually, I miss things because I’m walking at a brisk pace and even when I’m looking through the camera lens, I don’t see the obvious. Thankfully, the task was as much about looking as sketching. Try it for yourself.

Sketchbook decorated and text Like a Bird on a Wire

For another course, we had to think about lines and use our sketchbooks for mind maps, sketches and thoughts. Have you ever stopped to work out how many sorts of lines there are? Railway lines, roads, threads, music scores, ley lines, skylines, family lineage, poetry, storylines … so many lines. Everywhere.

Our sketchbooks filled with colour and energy as we spent time developing various themes, sometimes going off at a complete tangent in our enthusiasm and we explored different ways of recording what we’d seen and the objects that we’d picked up. By the end, our books were bursting with collages, prints, sketches and notes that have a multitude of possibilities for all sorts of creative projects and my head is still positively buzzing with creativity.

So much buzz, that I managed to complete this post!

 


9 thoughts on “Finding a Creative Buzz

  1. Very interesting to read your thoughts, Anne, on struggling to write blogposts. Honestly, I’d never have guessed! So I think it is helpful to bring these things into the open …
    I’m going to be fixated on lines in our landscape today ….. thanks for opening my eyes to a little bit different way at looking at the world 🙂

    1. Blogging has changed so much over the past few years that every now and then I question whether personal blogs have a place at all. I guess if that makes me think twice about what I post then that’s a good thing.
      I’d never particularly thought about the different sorts of lines but once I started, it was difficult to stop

  2. I love your sketches Anne, you are very creative! The hens and the wire fence are just lovely. I am struggling with my blog lately also, I feel like my personal thoughts might be repetitive and or boring and although I have a few projects on the go I worry that they may not be interesting enough to share. In life I suppose things constantly come and go, but I do still love blogging. I am always relieved to see that your blog continues.

    1. I know exactly what you mean about thoughts being repetitive – I guess it’s the cyclical nature of farming – but yours are never boring Jane!

  3. Food for thought Anne… I often have thoughts of posting something new on the blog once again and then something holds me back… very much questioning what it’s all for. I guess the recipes on G&G were mostly put there as a reference for my boys later in life should they be looking for family recipes that they grew up with. I really do miss the wonderful blogging community and to getting a glimpse into others kitchens around the world. M.xx

    1. You should put something on the blog! I still make your Butterscotch Surprise Pudding. In fact, we have plenty of raspberries at the moment that go fantastically well with that, so now you’ve reminded me, I shall make it for pudding today.

  4. This blog post has inspired me to get my sketchbook out today so thank you for sharing xxx

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