creativity quote

31 Days to Build Your Creative Confidence – Day 3

It’s July 3, tomorrow is a holiday. Maybe you are taking this whole week off or at least the next few days. Creative expression may be the last thing on your mind but this is a perfect time to build your creative confidence. With the holiday you may find yourself with extra downtime and a little more freedom to think about starting your creative practice.

Yesterday, I wrote about the power of noticing and how important it is to see the world with fresh eyes. Paying attention to the world around us has a rippling effect that opens our creative mind so that we are receptive to new ideas, inspirations and motivation to create! You can read that post here.

Today, I want to talk about creating a space in your home to make it easy to be creative!

We don’t all have fabulous artist’s studios!

Leonardo da Vinci once said, “An artist’s studio should be a small space because small rooms discipline the mind and large ones distract it.” I don’t know if I agree with that. I love having an entire room dedicated to my arts and crafts and lots of storage for my overflowing art supplies. Having a small space does force me to keep it neat and tidy. I find it hard to work in a cluttered craft room.

It’s only within the last year that I have had this gift of a craft room to call my own. Before that, supplies were tucked away in boxes and the kitchen table or a card table would become a temporary craft space. I found that I didn’t spend as much time in creative pursuits because I had to drag boxes out of closets, cover the table, use all the fun goodies and then clear everything away for dinner, even if a project wasn’t complete. Or if I used a card table, I would get complaints from my husband that it took up the t.v. room for weeks on end while I worked on a project when I had time.

Right now I am visiting my mom, who has a wonderful art space downstairs for her work with polymer clay and shelves full of fun supplies but not a lot of open table space for different crafts. So yesterday afternoon, we turned the kitchen table into a workspace and happily spent several hours experimenting with new supplies: Distress Ink stamp pads, stencils and tags. I stayed up way too late last night playing with the new supplies we’d bought. The quote above is one of the tags I created, as well as the one below. When I was done, I packed everything neatly into a box and now I have a portable mini-studio that I can use while I am here but not let it take over the kitchen for the next week.

creative confidence

What I have learned about starting and maintaining a regular creative practice is that you have to make it easy and you have to make your supplies accessible. My husband and I have a wonderful old desk in our bedroom near our altar where we keep our journals. We both love the quiet of this space and the view of the California mountains out the window. Having this space available means we are more committed to our journaling practice and every time we walk by the desk, our journals call out to us: here I am, come play with me!

 To build your creative confidence, designate space!

tag made with distress ink stamp padsIn the first day’s lesson, I asked you to color, to remember the joy of putting colors on the page. How easy was it? Did you have to scramble around, looking in old drawers and storage closets to find your crayons or markers? Did you think, “Oh, I can run to the store and pick up a brand new box?” Or did you say, “This sounds fun but I don’t have what I need so I will do it some other time” but that other time never comes. You might wonder why this lesson on creating space wasn’t number one. It’s because I wanted you to dive in to the experience of making art and remember how much fun it can be without worrying about the how or even the why.

To build your creative confidence, you have to designate a sacred space in your home for creative expression. Here are a couple of ideas:

  • a corner of your desk where your journal and box of crayons or markers stays present and visible
  • an old desk in the basement that used to belong to your kids
  • a small table in the corner of the living room that no one ever uses or you decide to co-opt for your own use
  • a nice open crate or basket that will hold our supplies and you can place where you will see it and have easy access.

As you get started, you don’t need an artist’s studio (if you have one, fantastic!) but you do need to make it easy to be creative.

So today’s lesson is to pick a place in your home that will become the ART ZONE. Spend some time cleaning the space. Add your supplies. Commit to spending 15 minutes in creative play at your new space. Here are some of my favorite supplies that I can’t live without and are always readily accessible in my craft room:

  • A blank journal (I keep several journals, one that is for writing daily and another that is for my mixed media art and has a very heavy weight paper)
  • Several pads of different weight art paper. My favorite is Bristol Vellum. Strathmore makes this in different sizes. I always keep an eye out for when Michael’s or Hobby Lobby have these on sale buy one get one free. I have them in all different sizes and weights.
  • Pencils
  • Sakura Micron pens
  • Markers (I just got some Tombow markers, dual ended, love them!)
  • Colored pencils (I have watercolor pencils and Prismacolor pencils)

With these few supplies, I can have hours of endless fun. Toss in some old magazines and scrapbook paper for making collage, scissors and glue and I can get lost for days!

If writing is your thing, make sure to have a journal that has nice paper and a pen that you love so you look forward to showing up to the page every day.

Are you up for the challenge? Share in the comments section below where you can carve out and maintain a dedicated space for creative play in your house!