How to Deal with an Art Block in 2021

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Maybe you’re feeling uninspired and kind of in a funk. Perhaps you haven’t picked up a pencil in a few weeks and you’re trying to convince yourself that the feeling will “go away soon”. We’ve all had an artist’s block before. Usually when a big project is due, or when you’re trying to impress your friends with your artistic skills (I’ve been there).

First thing’s first. Don’t force yourself to create something. I know, I know, that sounds so counterintuitive. However, it doesn’t really solve the whole creative block issue. Another crucial mistake is to wait it out. Unless you’re waiting on your Starbucks order, waiting will lead to nothing at all. So the question is, “How do I get out of this hiatus?” The key is to put yourself in a situation where you’ll find a “spark” to get your creativity going again.

How to Deal with Artist’s Block

Get Out

Sometimes you just need to get out of your head, and out of that “I can’t create anything!!!” mindset. Take a walk around your neighborhood, or if you’re feeling adventurous go on a hike. Treat yourself to some ice cream (or if you’re lactose intolerant, get a slushie). Visit your friends, and ask them about what they dreamt the other night. It’s good to have a change in routine.

Make a Playlist

Think of some songs that make you feel alive, or that put you in a giddy mood. Sometimes all you need is a little groove to get you through.

Try Something New

Change up you’re media! If you’ve sworn to yourself that you’d only ever use acrylic (ahem… yeah, I’m calling myself out too) it’s time to tear down those beliefs and go with something new! Who knows, maybe oil or watercolor will be your next fave. You can even go as far as changing your entire creative trademark and go with photography, or wood carving! There’s something for everyone, but that doesn’t mean you should limit your “something”.

Go Back in Time

Now I know you can’t quite literally go back in time like in sci-fi movies, but you can go down a similar route, by looking back at old photographs. Flip through old pictures of your childhood; what do you see? What about that awkward teen phase (yeah, maybe don’t look at that)? You can even go as far as looking at your parents’ old photographs.

Favorite Artists

It’s always a good idea to look at what your favorite artists are doing and take some inspiration. What about that new trend they hopped onto? There could be potential in creating your own version of it. Now, if you’re favorite artist/s roamed the Earth a few decades, or even centuries ago, what did they do? Think about their approach. Think about how their way of expressing their art changed over the years. Who knows, maybe this will spark your next “big thing”.

What’s Causing the Block?

The question everyone has, but no one really wants to answer….

It may be difficult to figure out why or when exactly your creativity lost its je ne sais quoi. Could it be that you’re stressed? Or maybe just afraid of failure? Procrastination? Try to focus on what is the actual root of the problem.

How to Prevent Artist’s Block

You might be thinking, “Now where were these options when I needed them?” Don’t worry, it’s ok to go through artist’s block– every artist does. But before you think about giving up and burning all your precious art, here are a few things you can do to prevent the awful feeling again.


Keep a journal with you at all times! Any and every idea is worth gold, so be sure to write it down!! The barista at your local coffee shop got your order wrong even though you’ve ordered it about a million times? Write it down. You’re at the park and you spot a blue feather on the ground? Write about it. Your favorite TV show character finally admitted their feelings to their love interest? Write that down too!

Draw Everyday

There’s really no easy way out, drawing everyday is essential to strengthening your creativity. Have a drawing contest with a friend or sibling. Draw something you saw that day. Doodle on the corners of a paper or receipt. Whatever it is, draw something! And if you don’t like it, guess what? You can throw it away, and go on like it never happened.

Look for Inspiration

You can’t force yourself to be inspired, you can certainly look for inspiration. Watch that new TV show everyone’s talking about (yes, that one, I don’t care if it’s cheesy). Read a book or a series of books. Get informed on what’s going on around the world. Hey, get into politics if that’s your thing.

Clean Your Space

I cannot emphasize this enough, please PLEASE clean your space! A cluttered room equals a cluttered mind, and that just won’t work if you want to cure your artist block. Throw away the things you don’t really need anymore. Pick up those snack wrappers and if you’re feeling up to it, rearrange your space!

Don’t Be too Hard on Yourself

Give yourself some credit! You’re an artist! It can be really tough at times. Your art is your journey, so don’t stress if you’re not exactly where you want to be yet, because eventually you’ll get there. Breathe, just breathe. You got this!

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