When I was a kid, I loved grabbing scrap paper and drawing pictures. I always wanted to draw the things that I saw. Even though I wasn’t a trained artist at the time, I didn’t let my level of skills keep me from doing what I loved.
That love didn’t always stay with me. Over time, drawing became scarier and scarier. I started to realize my level of talent didn’t match what I thought it was. I felt inferior and that I lacked the potential to become really good. When I entered college, I had to fall back in love with my creativity and learn how to stay motivated. During my time there I learned a few things to keep me going that I still do today:
1. Embrace and learn from your mistakes.
Who said you had to be perfect? Drawing never means you have to draw something exact. Painting isn’t for perfect brushstrokes. Creating is about exploring, thinking outside the box, and trying new things. Don’t let your mistakes keep you from creating. Find out what doesn’t work and go from there.
2. Feed your inspiration.
But what do you make? That’s the next obstacle you run into. You want to make something, but don’t know what. Start by sketching something around you. Look outside and be inspired by the colors you see. Get a Pinterest board going of things you would like to make. I love collecting images of patterns, great compositions, and nature. There is so much around you, don’t rely on your brain to come up with everything.
3. You need to practice.
Like anything you learn, you don’t become amazing overnight. It’s important to practice a little bit each time. Grab your sketchbook and challenge yourself to sketch. Daily sketching, doodling, drawing patterns are great ways to get your creative juices flowing.
4. Don’t compare yourself in a negative way.
When I was starting college, I was scared to declare my major because I looked at the Senior level artwork and thought I could never create anything to that level. What I learned over time was that everyone is on a different journey. Jon Acuff rightly puts it by saying,
“Don’t compare your beginning to someone else’s middle.”
5. Don’t give up.
If you truly want to create and do what you love don’t give up! If drawing is your dream don’t quit! Keep learning and keep at it.