Ponderings: Having multiple outlets of creativity

After an unintended 2 months long hiatus, I finally feel the drive to be back. There’s not much to say about the hiatus, except that I haven’t done a lot of art during this time, and I hardly wrote anything as well.

Which brings me to the topic at hand: of having multiple outlets of creativity. As you might (or might not) know, I engage in several creative activities: art, writing, music. A friend asked me about the progress in my writing the other day, and I had to embarrassingly admit that I had not made any progress since the last time he read them. It ended up with me lamenting about how I have no idea why I can’t find the energy and drive to write when everything is already vaguely in my head. But then he made an acute observation and link that I never realised: the reason that I didn’t have the creative energy to write is because I’ve been spending all my creative energy for the past 2 months on music.

And he’s quite right. I spent a lot of time thinking about music, on the bus, on the train, walking to the bus stop, any time that I don’t have to focus particularly on anything. It’s like I have this finite creative budget and I spent it all on music, leaving nothing for art or writing. Now that I am aware of my creative budget, I start to consciously spend more time thinking about art and writing, and actively trying to use up a fair portion of that budget. And it’s working, because I have since churned out more writing (if you would include this blog post as well), and I have been catching up on my backlog of YouTube subscriptions.

I still won’t say that I’m back in the full swing of “things”, whatever that might mean. I use to write and do art every single week, but that was during the period when I had little to no focus on music. Right now, I have music practices every week (though that will stop soon when concert is over next Saturday), while I write and art sparingly. I have yet to find a balance on all three of them at the moment, but I think I’m making some headway.

Is spending all my creative budget on one outlet of creativity a bad thing? I would think no. Even though I couldn’t produce anything substantial for my art and writing, I didn’t feel the sense of frustration that comes with a dry spell. It was merely a “I don’t really feel like doing this today even though I know I haven’t done it for a well.. Oh well I’m ok with not doing anything until the next time I feel like doing something.” In fact, it felt great to be buzzing with all these different outlets of creativity, because they somehow feed each other without you having to do anything. I’ll take this anytime over a creativity dry spell.

One interesting thing I noticed about my art is that most of them are done for art sake, rather then for something deeper on an emotional level. Journaling is always an important part of my art journals and scrapbooking, but it’s something I have not really done for these past 2 months. Going directly into art is something I have not experienced in a long time, so I’m embracing it as it comes, and just really enjoy the process of playing around without any specific aim or endpoint in mind.

Here’s two recent art that I did:

One was a painting I did following a step by step guide which I got for free during my last Spotlight shopping trip. I couldn’t follow it completely because I don’t have the brands/colours they suggested, but I tried to mix the colours as best as I could. Another lesson in colour mixing! It’s not a good quality photo because I didn’t have intentions to share it online then so I just haphazardly snapped it and sent it over What’sApp to a friend.

Watercolours on watercolour paper

Second is an unpolished quick sketch I did on my phone yesterday, just because I felt like it. Took me about 15 minutes to do it, barely any time taken out of my day but it turned out great anyway (at least to me). Haven done any digital sketching for a while and I was very pleased that I even did something at all.

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I hope you enjoyed this little update and chat on creativity budget. Now that I learnt something about my creative process, it becomes easier to work with it rather than work against it. In case you are wondering, I’m going to post my monthly Instagram updates pretty soon, though as I’ve said, there wasn’t much arty stuff going around these past few months.

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More Mobile Art

Scrolling through my phone gallery and found more mobile art that I drew/doodled in the past couple of months. Just like the last ones I posted, these were drawn on my mobile phone using the Sketchbook app and I feel like I ought to have a new section just on mobile art (seriously considering)! Most of them I did while I was bored or really restless so there isn’t any theme here except that I was trying to go for a background pattern kind of look.

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I didn’t mark the photos with “My Craft Diary”, though lately I have been rather forgetful at doing that. A lot of people do mark their photos with their name or logo or something, but I do wonder if there is really a need to do so. Hmm. Anyway, these are unmarked because I’m allowing them to be used freely! So you can save them and do something with them, but be sure to let me know what you did with them in the comments below!! I have the tendency to use my mobile drawings as my Whatsapp background picture but of course there are other uses for them I imagine. And another hint: rotate the image! I tried rotating earlier and they just look so different that way.

Lastly, a quote I wrote out as well, attempting rainbow colour shifting digitally. This was first seen (and inspired by) Motivational Monday from Amy Tangerine. Not a fantastic attempt, but it’s kind of cool. I think.

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Quote is by Paulo Coelho.

Mobile art

I have recently gotten more into mobile art. I own a Samsung Galaxy Note 3, which comes with a stylus so it’s almost the same as using pen on paper. Much better than the stylus that comes with my Dell laptop, which wouldn’t even allow me to draw a straight line or write anything remotely like my handwriting. There is good control of the Samsung stylus and the stroke are precise, an advantage I got to experience when I started playing Draw Something HAHA.

My phone comes with the Sketchbook app so all of my drawings are done on that app. It took a long while for me to get the hang of utilising the various tools offered in the app and I didn’t feel comfortable with it until quite recently. Which says a lot because the first time I ever used Sketchbook was like 3 years ago or something. Let’s just say I’m the kind of girl that gets confused without instructions but cannot really stand help pages (instruction manuals are another thing altogether, and so is desperate searching help pages).

Here are a couple of the drawings I made, and I might make more when I think of something to draw.

tree shadows against the colourful sky
This painting was inspired by a recent Amy Tangerine video. I attempted to paint this because it looked so easy in the video and I was glad to find out that it really wasn’t that difficult, though the tree shadows didn’t turn out as nice as how I would like them to be.
black cloud blob against sunset colours
This was a completely random drawing I made. I just picked a colour and then blend in more colours along the colour wheel, somehow ending up with sunset colours. I initially intended to do a sheep shadow but realised that I don’t actually know how to draw that so I settled for a cloud like shape shadow instead.