Freehand Advice: Coming up with Ideas

When you tell people that you are an artist, one of the most common responses is, "I have ideas but I just don't have the skills to communicate them." Concurrently you'll often hear, "how did you ever think of that?"

It is the latter response that I am concerned with today. Recently I was asked on instagram how I remain creative. The answer, sadly, doesn't involve reading a number of inspirational art blogs, or collecting DIY Magazine, or heading to the thrift store for some sweet kitsche. More plainly, in order to remain creative, a person needs to keep working. When you can't think what to draw, you draw your hand or the person next to you. After you've grown bored six or seven times you find that you understand hand and your neighbors. You've begun to grow as an artist, but your idea is still elusive.

I've found that somewhere in the act of production lies the art of creation. Our minds grow bored, gloss over, find connections we were not expecting, and suddenly we are thinking of things you would never have thought of.

That is why, when people ask me how to come up with new ideas, how to develop a style, or how to work a partial drawing, I always respond rather flippantly, "Just do it."

So just draw. Find your next creative idea by working and letting yourself get lost in that work.