As someone who works in a creative profession it’s imperative for you to shake the cobwebs off and get energized again and again. Pulling from all areas of life and looking in weird places to replenish your creativity can help feed your art and keep your voice unique. So get out there! Take time out of your schedule to discover new and exciting things in some unexpected places.
Physical objects are a great way to get those creative juices flowing. As they say, one person’s trash is another person’s goldmine. Check out your local thrift shop scene. Artists have found the ramshackle panoply of things from various decades a source of inspiration long before Macklemore. From finding a new jacket that makes you feel like the auteur you are, to reflecting on the wonder of bygone eras, thrift stores can spark up memories and give you a feel for the years that preceded your arrival on this planet.
If you’re the type of creative who’s accustomed to staying inside, making music on your DAW, or writing on your laptop, get out and take a hike, will ya? Not only is it good for your health, a whole lot can be gained by building a rapport with nature. Hike, climb, or get into the habit of taking long walks. You’ll learn something about yourself and the world and nature around you.
As a creator it’s pretty vital for you to know something of the artists and the artistic movements that came before you and your time. Listening to only contemporary music will keep you woefully uninformed. Talk to any wellknown audio engineer or music producer about the music they listen to and, chances are, they’ll list music from many different eras. Even if you’re not a music person but are a filmmaker, writer, or visual artist, digging into some old vinyl can really stimulate the senses and transport you to earlier times.
Other Weird Places
Factory yards, ghost towns, weird museums (like L.A’s Museum of Jurassic Technology, The Museum of Broken Relationships), historic homes, graveyards, specialty shops, old restaurants, senior centers and retirment homes, tour buses, busy street corners, artsy or old-time cafes, landmarks, nightclubs, Chinatown, trains, parks, buses, gyms, small towns.
Staying inspired and knowing how to feed your own inspiration is vital for any creative person who wants to make a living by doing their art. Whether you like it or not, you’re going to have to embrace being flexible and kicking yourself in the behind when you find you’re getting a bit stodgy or convinced of your own innate superiority. Embrace that sense of naiveté that’s probably lucking just below the surface. Force yourself to try new things and get out of the tried and true routine. Look in weird places and let some of that weirdness seep in. You’ll be glad you did.
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