Dear Preston: I Have Lost My Creative Edge


Dear Preston

Dear Preston:

I am a designer with ten years of experience and have never really had an issue being inspired by things–until now.  It’s been almost two months and it feels like nothing new is coming to me. At first, I tried to say it was Holiday fever; my mind was elsewhere, but the truth is that I think I have lost it.  I am so embarrassed to be writing this, but I don’t know what to do. Any suggestions?

Would Be Artist


Dear Artist:

This is such an important question as it is something we all deal with.  The trouble is that many of us forget that the feeling is only a momentary setback (yes, even a couple of months is momentary) and I assure you; it will pass. This is a cold comfort when we are feeling as though there is nothing new left inside of us–especially when we have clients to please.

What I have learned is that the worst thing we can do is sit in a room, while trying to conceive the “next hot idea”.  Instead, we must get up, get out and live.  Taking a walk through a beautiful park, museum or past a gorgeous design reminds us that life itself is inspiration.  Take a walk through your own neighborhood and just look up and down.  Pay attention to the textures of the buildings, cement and trees.  Look closely at the shapes and vivid color of flowers and grass.  Feel the wind on your face and think of the light fabrics and colors that best represent that feeling.  Go out to dine at a restaurant that serves a cuisine you have never tried with someone you rarely spend time with and sit through and savor a new experience. Music is also a wonderful way to help expand your mind.  The list goes on and on.   Most importantly, I encourage you to remain open to every experience, even those you don’t necessarily love.  There are lessons and ideas all around us and focusing on our fear that we won’t see any of them clearly is the only surefire way to miss them.

Readers:  What are your three best tips for moving through designers block?