Play On Purpose

Taking time to recharge and play is essential for mental health & longevity. Emerging Artists (and Professionals) can become so involved with the business of art- they start to loose touch with their creative roots. As we enter 2024- here is your permission slip to schedule some playful time in the studio. Relax, get out some supplies you don’t usually work with & make something just for the sake of creative exploration. Have FUN. Enjoy the process, make mistakes, push the boundaries of what you usually view as an art supply. Pull out those Q-Tips, sponges, cellophane, toothbrushes, whatever sparks curiosity- and make something with it.

Here Are 5 tips for playful creativity

  1. Schedule It: Protecting your time is so important. We want to dedicate our full attention to whatever it is we’re supposed to focus on in studio. This includes PLAY. Schedule a couple play dates in your studio- I recommend starting with at least 30min, but if you’re able to do more go for it! Ideally you include a play date in your schedule twice a month.
  2. Get Weird: Reach for unexpected tools and approaches to art. When we work with the same tools day in and day out they can become routine and stale. The expectations we tie to our usual supplies might stifle the urge for creative play- so reach for different options. Example: sponges, cellophane, toothbrushes, q-tips, your hands, etc. If you’re still struggling to let loose, use your “off hand” (if you’re a righty, use your left hand & vice versa).
  3. Learn from the masters: Children are genius playmates and artists. It’s said we are all born with creativity and gradually grow out of it. If you have kids, nieces, nephews, etc- ask them to come make some art with you. It’s a good time for everyone involved and you will, no doubt, learn something about becoming more fearless, bold & unique just from watching them.
  4. Get scrappy: All those scraps from your process- they have amazing potential! The bits of paper, dry clay, hardened paint, weird colors, bits of wire or glass… Start collecting them as art supplies and save them for your play day. It’s a great way to repurpose materials and approach your process from a different direction.
  5. Be different: Consider trying a totally different medium to switch things up. This helps you adopt a beginners mindset and make choices that are inventive. You could find an artist on the hub who practices a totally different medium and ask to trade some basic supplies. You likely already have some supplies like this yourself… Think collage, mixed media, incorporating poetry, ink, photography, clay, molding paste, etc. The rules don’t apply here- just do what feels right.
Posted in