- the state or quality of being creative.
- the ability to transcend traditional ideas, rules, patterns, relationships, or the like, and to create meaningful new ideas, forms, methods, interpretations, etc.; originality, progressiveness, or imagination.
Feeling creative or inspired is my absolute favourite feeling in this world. It’s impossible to describe, and often isn’t noticed by others, but my god; when it’s happening, absolutely NOTHING else is able to capture my attention. Well, nothing as amazing, anyway.
In school, creativity is generally associated with art classes, theatre or dance, playing an instrument or more recently, digital photography and media. These are all fantastic avenues to use to express yourself creatively, HOWEVER, some of us just aren’t interested or particularly good at them. It sucks, and it’s more common than you think (despite what you may see on instagram), but just because you can only produce shitty self-portraits and sound absolutely wretched on the recorder (guilty!), it doesn’t mean you have to completely give up. There are PLENTY of other ways to release some of those unharnessed creative juices, and here are 5 creative outlets that I’ve learnt to love whilst I still master the art of creating ‘tone’ and ‘depth’ and ‘anything half decent’ with acrylics.
I’m sure you’ve heard this one a million times. “Fashion is the ultimate form of self-expression” and all that jazz. But you know why it’s preached? Because it’s friggin’ TRUE! You can be the epitome of lazy or go out of this world with how you dress, and it’s all totally up to you. There are no rules or guidelines for fashion (despite what Vogue might ramble about in their style section), which makes it a fabulous way to express yourself creatively without having to actually make anything (jusssssttttt potentially spend a lotta $$$).
And for those of you who are actually capable of making their own clothes and designing, my hat goes off to you – a hundred times over. I used to dream of being a fashion designer all through my childhood, but because I am shit in the design side of things, I wistfully swept that one under the rug.
But yes, fashion – go nuts. Wear that vintage hat that everyone thinks is bizarre but you absolutely love. Cover everything in buttons and sequins and patches promoting bands and peace. Sure, you might get a few confused looks (especially if you live anywhere small or remote – I feel your pain!) but as they so rightfully say in Skins, ‘fuck it!’ Do what makes you happy and yada, yada, yada.
2. Interior Decorating
And no, you don’t have to apply for the Block to make this one a reality. It’s essentially just taking the time to decorate your room. Or your house. Or if you want to get really clever, decorate your backyard and call yourself an expert in exterior and outdoor decorating *insert coolsunglassesface emoji*.
Believe it or not, decorating your space is not only ridiculously satisfying when it’s done, but you also get to spend money on odd things like ceramic, salmon-coloured cacti and skateboard decks that you have no intention of using and say “but it’s going to look great in…” as a totally legit excuse. I personally love shopping for homewares, but more specifically decorative pieces (you can only own so many vases, you know) because that’s where you can really inject your personality into the space. I actually have a never-ending pile of artwork that I keep buying and needing to hang, which is lovely to look at, but not lovely to try and find odd-shaped frames for.
3. DIY Projects
The best thing about DIY projects, is that you can literally create/make ANYTHING you want, and you get to slap the DIY tag on it because you did in fact, do it yourself. Some popular DIY projects include terrariums and succulent gardens (always a winner), refurbishing old furniture, sewing whatever you can get your hands on, and my personal favourite, spray painting/regular painting random things to make them look prettier.
Okay, so those suggestions kind of suck, but you get the idea. If you feel like you’re lacking creative ideas, but still want to FEEL creative and artsy, then there are a million and one DIY blogs who’ve got your back. Usually they are way more organised than me, and instead of just writing about it, they actually show you specific ideas and step by step instructions with pictures (yay!). DIY projects can swiftly turn into DIY presents, and no matter how dodgy the end product is, the receiver has to love it because you made it and put craploads of effort into it JUST FOR THEM. So you get to be creative and tick that person off the gift list. Or you can just keep it for yourself and incorporate it into your rad interior decorating plan. Either way, it’s creative and hitting two birds with one stone. Done and done.
Writing is my favourite creative outlet. Not only because it’s free to do (although that gives it some serious brownie points), but because actually getting out whatever you need to say on paper makes you feel 58687 times better afterwards. Along with this blog, I keep a regular journal and like to write fiction when I am feeling particularly inspired, which is great for me because I’m always bloody thinking and no matter how much I talk to people about the random shit that comes into my head, THERE’S ALWAYS MORE.
Creative writing is simply great. You can write whatever you darn well please, and make up fictitious worlds or write people you know into ridiculous scenarios or create a whole novel from your cat’s perspective. The only boundaries are the ones you create for yourself (*cough, lame* I know – but true!) and because you’re doing it for fun it doesn’t matter if you never finish a particular story or make the characters as in-depth as your English teacher likes to read. Just have fun with it, and write down whatever comes to mind. Even if it’s just some song lyrics and random scribbles, it’s a nice way to relax and take your mind off things.
Obviously if you’re some sort of word wizard then you don’t have to stop at creative writing. Write a poem, or an article, or a song, or interview someone who fascinates you and explore what strand suits you best. And if you think it’s shit, you can simply hit the delete button or chuck your paper in the bin. Although I do recommend stashing it away in a folder for a good laugh at a later date. You won’t regret it.
I guess this one is kind of an extension from writing, except that before you start a piece you will usually choose a specific word/phrase/set of lyrics/whatever to use. It’s a passion of mine that I don’t invest enough time into, which is dreadful because the only way I’m ever going to get better is by PRACTICING!!!! But you don’t need to be good, it just needs to make you feel good. Plus, if you do become fantastic at it, you can join the rest of the rad typography artists and sell your prints/design logos for companies/create kickass graffiti/take over the world.
If I’m feeling more whimsical and spontaneous, I like to sit down with blank A3 sketch book and some watercolour paints, because you only need the tiniest bit of paint to write a word and it always seems to look pretty, no matter how dodgy your writing is. For the days when I want to put a bit more thought and effort into a project, I again get out that sketch book and some lead pencils and black marker pens. Unlike with my watercolours (in which blue, purple and red are my favourite colours to use), I like to keep my handwritten (?) pieces in black and white. A style which has been heavily influenced by my idol in the this field, Joel Birch, but also something that I feel that suits me best. I might invest in some of those pretty pastel Sharpies eventually, but for now, keeping it monotone is the way to go.
So there you have it – 5 obvious but still cool ideas to inject your creative energy into! I hope this has given you some sort of inspiration, and if not then you can have a giggle at another one of my strange takes on advice & idea posts.
Until next time,