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The Joy of Creativity

While we’re all getting through these weird days, I thought I’d drop by with a few things that might interest you of an arty nature. There are several different suggestions for ways to stimulate those creative juices and something a bit different, to sooth your ruffled feathers…x

Lots of us find doing something creative really helps us to relax and unwind if we’re feeling uptight. It doesn’t have to be anything too challenging, sometimes the simplest things are the best. If you’re looking for ideas to get you started, or you want a change from what you’ve been doing, have a look at Cat Bennett’s website.

Cat believes that everyone is creative and she’s been running creative workshops in Boston, US, for over a decade. Her website gives lots of simple practices - and I really do mean simple - that are incredibly freeing. There are two recent ones I’d recommend.

The Painted Paper Collage is my favourite. In a nutshell, she says paint some solid colours onto paper, then, when they’re dry, cut them into pieces, and then lay the pieces out onto a piece of paper in ways that you like. Play and experiment. If you like it, you can finally glue them down.

Deceptively simple, but how brilliant. In fact, when I first looked at it, I thought to myself, this is exactly what I like to do when I work in fabrics, I just cut up fabric instead of paper. I love it when you find inspiration from random sources.

Another of my favourite places to ground myself creatively is over on YouTube, where I love the Creationsceecee videos. Her tag line is ‘helping others find their creative voice’ and she posts lovely tutorials to help us use watercolours in very easy, fun ways. Have a browse around her channel, her doodling and watercolour combinations are fabulous.

I’ve tried several of her techniques and found them really helpful, even though I’m a textile artist, not a painter. We so often forget while we’re bogged down in the usual run of things, that stopping to play can be very beneficial, so while we’re currently out of our usual routines, it seems like an excellent opportunity to let ourselves have some creative fun.

My final recommendation for today is a little different. It’s not about making art, although art certainly features right in the centre. It’s actually something that I think you might find extremely relaxing, a lovely way to switch off from what else is happening.

It’s to have a look at the YouTube videos from an art restoration company in Chicago, called Baumgartner Restoration. Baumgartner film their restoration projects, posting them online, usually with a gentle voice over, explaining what they’re doing. And then they post the same video, but this time without any voice over, just the sounds, which, if you are into ASMR, you may find give you a gentle tingle and find relaxing to listen to or watch.

Sounds odd? Well, it might be a bit off the wall, but my daughters and I are all addicted. Have a look and see what you think. Even if you don’t get the tingles, you’ll definitely learn lots about painting restoration!

So, there you have it. Just a few ideas to keep you busy. Stay safe everyone.

Ann x


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