Finding Inspiration in Design Jobs When You’re Stuck

It can be easy for those in design jobs to fall into a monotonous pattern. Writers may experience blocks in creativity and find it difficult to break from the pattern of what works. For design jobs, that stagnancy can be seen in repetitive themes and styles. The fear of falling into a boring pattern is one shared by many artists. However, there are ways to trigger inspiration and keep ideas fresh and innovative so you can be proud of your work.

Take a step back

Being too involved in a project could cloud your mind and put limits on your creativity. Sometimes, taking a break from it can help clear your mind and refresh your inspiration so when you return, it’s like you’re seeing it for the first time. During your break, scour the Internet for unrelated subjects of interest. Smashing Magazine recommended letting all forms of art inspire you – even those that seem completely unrelated to the project at hand. Things like architecture, fashion, and packaging designs can be great resources for getting you out of a creative block. Note what you like about each of the pieces of artwork you see, and try to incorporate those elements into a unique design.

Also, it doesn’t have to be visual art that influences your design. The source recommended letting your favorite music guide your illustration. When designing, try listening to a certain genre that elicits an emotion that you’re trying to evoke with the piece. For example, if your piece needs to provide a sense of comfort for its audience, listening to soothing sounds could help create an atmosphere that inspires you to design accordingly.

Talk to others

Depending on your work station, you may be surrounded by other designers, colleagues in different departments, or, if you work from home, nobody at all. Sparring Mind, an online resource for creative professionals, noted that those who you turn to for feedback on a project can deeply impact your creativity. As a result, talking to a variety of people will help give you an array of ideas and advice that can turn your project in a different direction. One person’s interesting take on your design could be all you need to refresh your imagination and produce something different.

Design jobs require certain technical skills that might make it more convenient to sit near other professionals with similar abilities. While it can encourage knowledge-sharing, it’s not necessarily completely beneficial. A lack of diversity can be a main reason for creative stagnancy, noted Sparring Mind. If possible, try to keep easy access to other professionals who may be able to better influence you.

Space out

Art blog 99designs suggested those who are stuck to engage in a special form of meditation and to “look, but don’t see.” Letting yourself space out and remain open to all forms of inspiration is a great way to ignite your creativity and produce unique work. There’s research that supports this idea and shows that it’s an effective way to recharge your artistic abilities. According to a Leiden University study, participants were able to generate more ideas when they used “open monitoring” meditation in which they allowed their senses to be influenced by all of their surroundings. Before you start working on a challenging project, it might be a good idea to take 10 minutes to meditate and recharge. That way, you can get to your work with a fresh mind and rejuvenated sense of creativity.

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