Indie Inspiration: 12-3-10

This week's Indie Inspiration includes some thoughts from me, your faithful blogger, with the help of a few friends.

Tara over at Scoutie Girl recently posted a terrific series on The Deconstruction of Ennui - how to recognize and combat boredom in our lives and creative processes. One particular blurb that clicked with me was written by our friend Kirsty Hall, who elaborated on her three stages of ennui. The second stage is what hit home, and that's what I want to talk about:


The second sort of creative boredom is the ‘It’s All Shit’ stage.

This is when I’m working on a project and I hit the mental equivalent of a patch of black ice. I will suddenly be so bored and infuriated with my own work that I could just about scream.

It feels like the sort of tension you get before a thunderstorm and I’ll often be in a vile mood for a day or two. This is a sign of one of two things. Either the thing I’m working on really is rubbish OR I’m about to have a huge breakthrough with it.

I usually push through these patches because I’ve learnt that they’re a prelude to that leap in understanding or a new way forward with the idea. However, if I go into the studio and everything I touch turns to shit and I start wanting to throw things, I take a mental health day because I’ve learnt that it’s pointless trying to work on those particular days. Fortunately they’re very rare.

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I don't know about you, but I hit this wall all the time in my creative process. In fact, just a few nights ago I was working on a new fiber project and halfway through I decided, "I hate this and it was just a stupid idea to begin with and it's all just shit." I was all set to give up when I remembered that I usually hate my work at this point, no matter what I'm doing, so I convinced myself to keep going. The next day, I looked at that bit of artwork again, tweaked a few spots, and fell in love. Last night before my brain turned off I found myself dreaming up new artworks in this genre. I had made a breakthrough.

Are you familiar with this stage? Where do you get stuck? What do you do to break through? Tell me in the comments! And please go check out Tara's great series for a good kickstart to your weekend.

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