Judging from Instagram, we just may be reaching a modern-day creative peak. It seems as though everyone is a prolific DIY-er, an expert potter or an unbelievably talented artiste. And while it’s great to see folks tap into their potential, it can also make us feel a little behind on the path to channeling our inner muse. Finding ways to stay creative and channeling the artistic maven inside isn’t easy — but it’s always worthwhile.
Just ask Hannah Perrine Mode, a San Francisco-based maker whose creativity fell to the wayside a couple years back. To regain momentum, push her creativity to the next level and keep herself accountable, Hannah created her Drawing-a-Day project. For nearly three years, she has created an original piece of art, uploading many of them to her Instagram. Check out her tips (and her work below) for jumpstarting your creative drive. Who knows? You might even get the urge to start your own everyday art project, one little piece at a time.
Tips for Being More Creative
1. Make do with what you’ve got, space and material-wise. “I started Drawing-A-Day somewhat on a whim in May of 2013. I was living with my best friend in a shoebox of an apartment in Chinatown — we didn’t even have room for a kitchen table, let alone a desk or a place for an easel — so I decided that I was going to do a drawing each day, and that I would post some of them to Instagram to keep myself accountable to keep up the project.”
2. Don’t limit yourself to one type of canvas. “Sometimes in order to keep it up, I have to get a little creative about the medium: I’ve drawn on napkins at bars, made a chalkboard menu at my friend’s wedding, used a stick in the sand at the beach, brought notebooks while hiking over mountains, scribbled with sharpies for temporary tattoos on friends’ arms, painted with coffee and charcoal from a campfire and drawn with sidewalk chalk in Brooklyn. To make it easier, I’ve also learned to put together little art-making kits for myself when I’m on the go: a tiny notebook on the subway, a watercolor set for the beach or a lightweight pen for hiking.”
3. Take it easy on yourself. “I don’t mean to say that you should set the bar too low, but make it easy. You can always scale it later. And if starting a new routine or hobby is too much, you can simply do things to engage your creative brain! Visit a museum, read a book, start a Pinterest board, rearrange some furniture.”
4. Buddy up! “Hold yourself accountable by joining a class, talking to friends about it or starting a blog. Just figure out something that is do-able and achievable in your lifestyle, whether it be 10 minutes of knitting a day, taking a language class, a drink-and-draw session with friends or learning to code.
Talk about it with a close friend! It’s always super helpful for me to bounce ideas off of my creative friends and mentors. I’ve found it very helpful to work in a variety of creative mediums. I love finding the right balance between my design, illustration and art work. I also just get bored doing the same thing all day, every day, so changing scenery can also be very key. Sometimes I’ll even take a little watercolor kit to a cafe, just to switch it up.”
5. Remember why you’re doing this in the first place. “Trust your gut and do what feels good. It won’t always be easy, but it should always make you happy.”
(Photos via Alisha Siegel and Hannah Mode)