I’ve got a beautiful and inspiring guest post to share with you! Today, the lovely Samantha from Aqua Paisley Studio (all the way from southern Australia) has some thoughts to share about Sparking your Creativity. (I think we can all use a little jump start to our creative juices sometimes.) Samantha has some great wisdom to share, but I think you’ll be equally inspired by all the photos of her gorgeous quilts too! Thanks for sharing today, Samantha!
Thanks Amy for inviting me to share some thoughts with your readers! For those of you who don’t know me – I’m Samantha, and I blog over at aquapaisleystudio.com.
For much of my life I have heard people refer to me as being ‘naturally creative’! Flattering for sure, but I don’t mind telling you how far from the truth that statement is. 😉
Over the years I have worked in many fields where it was necessary to create on demand. This experience has helped me to see that people’s understanding about creativity is often coloured by preconceived ideas that have no basis in reality.
That’s why today I am sharing some thoughts with you about creativity and motivation, in an effort to encourage you to think differently about yourself and your creative work.
It’s easy to believe that some people are more gifted than others, when the actual truth is simply that some people have skills different to our own. Skills, that given effort, practice and time could be ours too.
That’s not to say that we don’t each have varying degrees of talent, because we do. A talent is a high degree of ability or aptitude for a certain thing. But talent doesn’t come wrapped up in a bow, it is something that develops after a tremendous amount of hard work and perseverance. Developing our individual talents and our skill set becomes our unique creative signature.
Let go of that part of you that instinctively wants to compare yourself to another. Your creative journey is yours alone.
If you want to be creative, you have to create! You might not immediately give yourself permission to call yourself ‘creative’, but over time you will ‘become’ the thing it is you do.
Whether you are a beginner or an experienced quilter, celebrate where you are in your journey, and recognise the opportunities for learning and growth as you develop your creative skills.
Celebration Cake – Pattern by Aqua Paisley Studio
The Elusive Spark
Inspiration is very often viewed as the spark that is required to motivate us! We are inspiration seekers in an inspiration saturated world.
Unfortunately, it’s true that we often ‘can’t see the forest for the trees!’ Inspiration is everywhere, but sometimes we need to look beyond the obvious social media influence and connect to something deeper within ourselves.
While I often see images online of quilts that I immediately want to add to my ‘make me’ list of projects, it’s not often that I immediately set out to make the project that excites me. There is always some additional spark besides the initial visual inspiration that sets me on a path to making what I have seen – that’s part of the complex nature of inspiration!
This pouch was a gift for a friend. It was a pattern I had seen and had wanted to make for quite a while, but it wasn’t until I had the perfect person in mind to gift it to that I truly felt inspired to make it.
Scissor Satchel – Pattern by Fig Tree & Co — Quilt:Gypsy Lane – Pattern by Aqua Paisley Studio
Inspiration is not as straightforward as we are often led to believe. While it has its place in our creative process, it’s important to remember it is not the key to getting started.
Make the Connection
Results don’t just happen. It is absolutely necessary to be intentional about what you want to achieve in your ideal creative world.
Why is creativity important to you? Why is that project calling your name? What is the connection for you?
Getting clear on why it’s important to you is the first step in working a plan of action to accomplish your goals.
As a quilt maker one of the things that is most important to me is the connection I feel to the origin of a quilt design. Knowing this about myself, it is easier to choose which patterns I want to make next.
Think about what it is that sparks your joy when it comes to making quilts – is it colour, history, play, texture, improvisation, proportion, story, or something that speaks uniquely to you?
Our ‘why’ will most likely be different to the next person and that makes for a wonderful world of quilts ready to inspire and delight.
Stardust – Pattern by Aqua Paisley Studio
Do you want to know the secret to creative motivation? Are you ready for it?
If you want to be creative, the key is to aim for small successes on a regular basis!
It’s the collective small achievements which keeps us motivated. When we observe ourselves making progress, we become the fuel for our own motivation. Even tiny steps towards our final objective generates a feeling of accomplishment and success.
Show up each day and do the work that nurtures your creativity. Whether it’s 5 minutes or 5 hours, spend time focused on creating a habit of joy in your creative space.
Undoubtedly getting started is the hardest part in undertaking any new creative project. If you want to create confidently then it is important to strengthen and nurture your creative muscle through effort and experience.
It’s essential to start small and focus on creative habits that will ultimately unlock your full creative potential.
If you want to be creative – you can be!
Just get started and stick with it. There’s an endless world of creative possibilities waiting for you and your unique perspective.
Cherry Tree Lane – A Pattern by Aqua Paisley Studio
If you want more ideas on how to nurture your creativity then you might like this post – Creative Habits | 4 Ideas To Get You Started.
Or perhaps you are feeling a little burnt out, then this post – How to Stay Creative (When Your Sewjo Needs a Vacation) has ideas on how to stay creative while you rest and re-energize.
It has been fun sharing my experience with the creative process with all of you. I hope you can look at your own creativity and see it in a new and exciting light.
Remember these 3 important points:
- Creativity takes work. It’s not a gift – it’s a skill set.
- Inspiration is not the key to getting started.
- Small successes on a regular basis create motivation.