Social distancing has become synonymous with current times. Nations are in a deadlock between self-quarantining at home and as a result the maddening effects of cabin fever have started to take hold.
Luckily, creative education director of Artists Online, Roger Wolfson, offers some general subjects to get your creativity into shape.
Keeping a mental focus is actually a meditation, just without the mysticism that are carried by religious dogma. Engaging in creative activities creates a space of discovery and critical thinking that can aid and support other cognitive tasks in other areas of life.
Here’s four hobbies to get your creative muscles flexing again.
The very action of mixing and applying color to a surface is supremely satisfying and the discovery of pictorial representation balanced with expressive gestures and texture is a perpetual conversation with yourself. It is a meditation.
Using water based paints will provide a safer non-toxic experience. Learn how to stretch your own canvas and how to prepare its surface to seal it. Establish simple rules with simple tools. Restriction is key to enjoying the process. Utilize only 3 brushes and 3 colours to begin with and keep the subjects similar. The beauty is in the painting, keeping vigilant to what is happening in front of you.
Drawing is so easy to start. Consider a long conversation on the phone and doodling on scraps of paper become a comforting companion to the call. This is simply our minds calling for a creative impulse whilst we process outside information.
Using only 3 pencils (2B, Hb,2H) sketch out 5 a day with 5 mins per drawing, using the lightest pencil first. Every other day, focus on one of the sketches and build upon it for an hour, utilizing the effects of erasing graphite as well as making new marks.
Set up a range of plants and objects in your home to depict and study.
Despite its connotations of being the elderly pursuit of grandma, Knitting is having a renaissance from the rise of home based crafts and online tutorials.
The simplicity of tying threads together with 2 needles is championed by the skill of various knots and weaves and makes for challenges to one’s patience and attention. Consider that, despite restrictions of travel during the pandemic, Knitting can be taken almost anywhere.
Join an online knitting circle to make new friends and learn techniques and share briefs to make your jumper for the winter months ahead.
Part of making creative pursuits enticing is the ease of starting. Indeed, if you felt you already had the tools to begin a new hobby, you are more likely to start.
Phone photography is a very simple way of starting photography. With access to high definition lens and the ability to show your shots, there has never been a better time to join an online camera phone group.
Consider title briefs like ‘Man vs Machine’ and ‘Nature Springs’ where there’s a dichotomy of subject. In doing so this will start to build on a critical engagement with your surroundings and will attune one not simply to take a photo but to examine the subject and understand what the picture narrates.