Feeding Creativity with Inspiration …
Inspiration doesn’t always come easy every single day. Every designer at one point or another gets what we like to call “writer’s block”.
How do creative individuals get past this you ask?
Knowing the answer to this is something that comes with time and experience.
But first, before you begin our creative process, make sure you know the purpose. Have you considered …
- What is the end goal and what does it need to achieve?
- What is the main message and how is it going to be delivered?
- What platform(s) will it be displayed on?
- Who is the target audience?
- What is the brand and are their any style guides or restrictions?
These mains considerations will streamline your creative process by setting a framework to design within and eliminating any possibilities or options that can make a project less daunting without placing restriction on your creative process. Once you have the purposeful details in place things should come to you a bit easier. But if for some reason, you’re having “one of those days” and your creative juices still aren’t flowing as you need them to, there are a few tricks and places I’m willing to share with you that have helped me on “writer’s block” days. Take a peak …
When I run into trouble finding the inspiration I need to get a new design project off the ground I usually start with a deep breathe and take a look at how other designer’s have dealt with this similarity in the past. A need to generate some new ideas can be easily sparked by crawling through other creative work (physically on paper or visually online).
My office/art studio is also packed with a small library of design books, art books, design industry magazines, marketing sample packages, Pantone swatch books and even colour swatches from the local hardware store. The design books and magazines tend to fill their pages with up-to-date design ideas as well as their favourites from past issues, all in which can fuel some amazing levels of inspiration. And, the marketing sample packages that I tend to squirrel away are usually because they appeal to me in some way; either because I admired the finish of the stock they’re produced their product on or because they contain an innovative or visually appealing piece of work. All of these items can be drawn on as sources of design inspiration. Here is a great sample list of online magazines to start your search:
Now that you’ve gotten yourself started with those … another good source of inspiration would be to troll social media. Especially Pinterest … that’s right, I am encouraging you to stop what you are doing and head on over to the dark side for work-related purposes. Just don’t get side tracked. LOL! I have honestly found some of my best inspiration from this platform. It is packed with stunning artwork, photography and designs and Pinterest is honestly easy-as-pie to search through and navigate. For those of you who haven’t already … set up your own account to save create an “inspiration” board to refer back to on those brain stumbling days!
What I’d like to suggest most of all is to create your own “catalogue” of inspiration. This is one of the best things you can do. Start a collection of things you have read, seen or listened to that you find utterly interested and/or inspiring. Bookmark your favourite websites to refer back to; pin images to a special Pinterest board; follow designers on Instagram and Behance; even go to the lengths of tearing out pages from a magazine. Creating this personal collection for yourself will provide you with a never-ending reference source for future projects and “writer’s block” days.
Last but not least, talk things out with other designers and like-minded individuals. Make creativity part of your everyday routine and not just for “work” purposes. Set yourself a regular “artist” date, either by yourself or with a friend. I personally do this one twice a month with my bestie, Christine Jose owner of Cupcake Catacomb, so we can sort our inspiring ideas out together … even if it’s by creating art in another form other than digitally.
And get some fresh air!
Creativity doesn’t always come naturally, especially when we need it to the most but planning ahead by collecting your own inspiration, experimenting with other mediums and sources and treating yourself right adds a fresh new face to a whole new level of creativity!
Do you have any inspiring sources or tips you would like to share with the world?
Share in the comments as we’d all love to hear about your creative resources.
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