Plan Your Inspiration

Plan Your Inspiration
March 8, 2017 Andrea Muhlbauer
plan your inspiration

Plan Your Inspiration

Here’s the truth: I’m a dork for planning. I love seeing artists use planning to their advantage. I get really excited about it. And today, I’m going to tell you why planning is WORTH getting excited about.

The importance of planning is incredibly underrated. And I get it – planning isn’t really ‘sexy.’ But what most people don’t realize is that planning can actually do some AMAZING things for artists… and it’s easier than it seems.

While I love all types of planning, one type gets me the most excited – when you plan your inspiration. For artists, this means you are not waiting around to randomly get inspired before you start creating. You don’t wait for any mood to strike you, and you don’t waste any time. Instead, you ACTIVELY do things that inspire you, that get your creative juices flowing. So you might be thinking, ‘What’s the big deal?’ The big deal is that THIS is the difference between creating one piece a year and creating ten pieces a year. Which do you think will make you a better artist?

Actively planning your inspiration means you have more opportunities to create. Having more opportunities to create means you get to practice creating art more often, and I think the logic from here is pretty common sense: More practice = better artist. In short, if you want to become the best artist you can be, you need to start MAKING the opportunities to practice instead of WAITING for them to come to you. YOU need to start taking control of YOUR career.

So now that we know why it’s important, what does it look like to plan your inspiration? First let’s talk about what it DOESN’T look like. Planning your inspiration is NOT pinning a bunch of motivational quotes on Pinterest, and it’s NOT an excuse to sit around and look at things instead of doing the actual work. To plan your inspiration, you need to surround yourself with things that make you excited – things that make you start thinking about a million different ideas all at once. Here are some examples of my favorite ways to plan some inspiration:

  1. Listening to quality music
  2. Reading quality books
  3. Interesting photography
  4. Watching dance films
  5. Spending some time in nature

You’ll notice a word that I used several times: ‘quality.’ What I mean by ‘quality’ is that you’re actually finding things that speak to you – music that gets you thinking about structure and emphasis, books that get you thinking about different ways to tell a story and create a character, etc. The key is ALWAYS that whatever you use to plan your inspiration needs to get you thinking and get your creative juices flowing. Just because a certain band is really fun to dance to at a party doesn’t mean it’s going to stimulate your creativity.

Find the things that get YOU inspired, and surround yourself with them. And then take the next step – schedule out some time to actively pay attention to these things. Planning your inspiration is the tool that helps you take control of your career and your opportunities, but YOU have the be the one to act on it.

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