Stay Inspired & Pursue Why You Got Into Art in the First Place
This week is a very special episode as I’m doing my first interview on the show with my good friend Eric Friedensohn also know as Efdot. He knows how to stay inspired to create for his personal side projects.
Eric is a talented hand lettering artist and designer based out of Brooklyn, New York. He’s worked with the likes of Pat Flynn and taught lettering workshops for Vayner Media. He works at We Work and is the creator of the Optimist Project.
He’s big into skateboarding and traveling and it’s an honor to have him as the first guest on this show.
Why Do You Feel Uninspired to Create in the First Place?
- is a universal force that has one sole mission: to keep things as they are.
- is the force that will stop an individual’s creative activity through any means necessary, whether it be rationalizing, inspiring fear and anxiety, presenting distractions, raising the voice of an inner critic, and much more.
- will use any tool to stop creation flowing from an individual, no matter what field the creation is in.
Steven Pressfield states, “The best way to fight the resistance is to do you work.”
He encourages the artist to “Go Pro.” This mean going from being an amateur hobbyist to becoming a professional because pros don’t make excuses—they do the work.
Many search for motivation but motivation comes from the act of doing.
Eric’s POV On Resistance and Feeling Uninspired to Create
Refusing to give into the resistance and doing the work isn’t always so simple and straight forward.
Everywhere you look there are endless things to pursue and they are designed to be addicting distractions.
I find myself uninspired to create when I:
- give myself too much “free time”
- am not well-rested
- don’t have ANY structure / routines
- overcommit and say yes to too many things (like social obligations)
- have drama or chaos in my life
- focus too much on what others are doing and begin losing sight of why I got into making art in the first place.
It’s important to always remind yourself why you got into creating art in the first place.
How to Stay Inspired
1. Vary Your Intake
- making things recycled from what you’ve been seeing and admiring
- not following enough diff types of artists
- inspired to make your work more unique
- follow people in more diverse areas
- researching artists beyond their works, like their books, blogs, podcasts
If you’re always in taking in the same stuff, you’re going to end up outputting the same stuff too.
If you’re feeling really uninspired to create art, find something to create totally different like a wild recipe.
2. Being Around Other Creatives
- Getting within a community and establishing relationships online or through conferences.
- When you’re around people who are creating it’s contagious.
- Engage with people outside of liking their photo.
- The more people you can be around who are doing what you’re doing the better.
- gives accountability but you end up learning and think in new ways.
- 2014 agency with chalkboard wall mural example
- Get something on the calendar to meet consistently
- Find others who share similar goals and values
- Reach out and take initiative to build creative relationships
Change of Environment
- Change of environment can get you in new head space
- get outside your normal routine
- rearrange furniture
- work in a different setting (diff room of your house or coffee shop)
- Partake in things that recharge you mentally, physically or spiritually that fill you up with ideas
- Being active in sports or exercising
- Being outdoors
- Practicing mindfulness through yoga / meditation
- It’s important to always remind yourself why you got into creating art in the first place.
- If your intake is always in the same stuff, you’re going to end up outputting the same stuff too.
- Follow different types of work and art outside of your normal preferences to influence new inspiration.
- It’s contagious when you’re around people who are creating.
- Take initiative and engage with people outside of liking their photo.