How to figure out what makes you creatively fulfilled
I published a blog post last week about choosing the right personal projects for both yourself and also to further your career. However even with the advice that I offered, it can still be a difficult thing to get right, because even if you think you’ve got most of the elements figured out, you might still end up working on a project that you really don’t enjoy doing, and it will definitely show in the end result.
So I thought that today, I’d write about how to figure out what makes you happy when it comes to creating. All of this advice will also help gear you towards being more original as an artist and developing a style.
One way to start thinking about projects that will be fun to work on is to think about your inspirations, after all they already make you feel motivated, spark creativity and want to do more in general, so why not use those inspirations as fuel for your ideas?
There are many different ways you could put your inspirations to good use. For example as you might already know, I really love fish, I find them really interesting and weird, and I'm definitely the only person I know in my circle who has the knowledge of fish that I do. So an option might be to use the fish in the project such as creating fish based characters or doing studies of the fish etc. Or another idea could be to use the fish as motivation for the project such as to try and raise money and awareness for fish related charities. The project itself might still have some connection to fish visually, but it could be pretty much anything, it’s just that the end result of the profit you make going to something you really care about is the motivator.
Although this might not seem like an obvious element to be able to get across in projects, when you think about it, it’s by far one of the easiest things that comes across in an artist’s work. For example, there are a lot of artists who do very ‘cute’ style illustrations, and when you see a lot of them in real life (not all of them of course!), they quite often wear a lot of pastel colours and ‘cute’ accessories and it’s pretty clear to see how their personality is reflected in their art.
The same goes for an artist who illustrates horror illustrations for example, they quite often wear a lot of dark clothes and horror based graphics on their t-shirts. So take note of your own personality, there will be ways to reflect this in your work. As for my own personal example, I have tattoos, I wear a lot of darker colours, I have bright blue in my hair and piercings and all of these elements are often included in the characters I design. I also have a really dry sense of humour and I've often been told my humour in general comes across in my work. It’s not something I do intentionally but when I create art I’m always creating it for me first, not someone else, and personally I think that’s the best way for your work to represent yourself because you’re creating purely for your own happiness and joy.
No matter what it is that you do, even if you’re not a creative, there will always be a reason why you do it. Maybe it’s because you want to teach people, or maybe it’s because you want to raise awareness for a cause that’s important to you or maybe even simply that you have a vision that you want to bring to life.
It doesn’t matter what it is, you will always be able to use it as motivation for projects and what the end result of that project might be. For example if you want to teach people, why not record the whole process of whatever you create so that they can learn from you. Or if your passion is to bring your vision to life, do your research and do lots of it to ensure whatever you do create has the desired effect on those who view it.
I hope that this continues to help you choose the right personal project to work on next, and as always, feel free to email me if you have any questions or would like to chat about it more!