As the days get shorter, get more colorful!
October 24, 2017
By Beth Herrild
If you’re like me, you dread falling back (well, & winter.) Even though I know there are still the same number of hours in every day, going to work in the dark and leaving work in the dark activates some inner homing instinct that shouts in my brain “Don’t go anywhere else, go directly home, put on sweatpants and curl up under a blanket! It is very late!” I especially find it harder to be creative when it is dark at 5:00 pm! So, what to do?
Tap into your creativity by figuring out new ways to incorporate lights into your home!
• One And DONE! I frequently hear from parents that they subscribe, (or the Grandparents subscribed for them,) to another art subscription box, or even to a science or STEM box and the projects are One And Done activities. One and done means that it is something your child does or puts together and once he/she has completed it, there is nothing else to do. On top of this, the result is usually a thing, like the above mentioned clock, that the parents don’t know what to do with! Many parents have told me that they have these things stacked up in their garages. Not to toot our own horns, but that is why we use high quality art supplies, which in most cases can be used several times after the initial art project is done! We also don’t re-package paints and other art supplies for several reasons, but one reason is that once the material has been used up, parents can easily purchase more if the child really enjoyed working with it. You might want to think about what the product is and how it will be used or end up in a landfill before making a purchase.
This doesn’t have to be expensive, there are lots of ways to repurpose old white Christmas lights. Teenagers have been doing this for years. It can be as easy as screwing a small cup or two hook into your ceiling (no tools needed,) and looping some strands of lights from them. There are some fun ideas on the Making lemonade Blog that are more geared to adults!
Just say no to beige or brown winter coats!
What I mean by this is, infuse some color into your daily life with everything from interior paint colors & clothing to pens and paperclips! If color is stimulating and fun for you, just be purposeful when buying even hum drum every day items. You may be missing a chance to add a little spot of inspiration! Even writing a grocery list with a set of Papermate markers can be inspiring.
Move your body more.
I get some of my best inspiration while walking in the forest with my dogs, swimming, and even riding a stationary bicycle. I have noticed that if I exercise by doing something that requires a lot of concentration, like playing tennis with my husband, I don’t get the same effect. It should ideally be some activity that allows your mind to wander and it should last for at least 40 minutes. But, if you don’t have forty minutes and are doing some other type of activity, moving more is still a really good thing!
Once a week, try to squelch your inner homing instinct.
Try to make your self get out of your normal routine once a week even if the weather is miserable, go to an art museum or visit a cafe or shop that you have never been to, or haven’t been to in a long time. In The Artist’s Way, Julie Cameron refers to these as Artist Dates. It is a date you make with yourself, (preferably alone,) hopefully for at least an hour, but even if you only have a half an hour in between appointments to make an unplanned stop. It can be as simple as wandering through a fabric store, a craft or art supply store, a home goods store, or going to a play or concert. The idea is to nurture your senses and feed your creativity. If this is just impossible, carve out a little time at home to wander through Pinterest.
Keep a sketch book in a handy place and draw one sketch per day!
This is way way easier than it sounds! You could draw your coffee cup with a pen or a pencil, you could draw something abstract, it doesn’t have to be a huge finished sketch. Maybe you could use those Papermate pens we talked about earlier? Just spend 20 minutes doodling something! It doesn’t even matter what it looks like. It’s about the process not the product. However, if you do care what it looks like, then just know that the more you observe the world around you and draw, the better you will get! Try drawing with your left hand or without lifting your pen from the paper. If you want to try something really different, use an eye dropper to draw with ink. They take the dried drawings further. I first saw this technique in a book titled, Drawing Lab, by Carla Sonheim.