It’s easy to get caught up in comparison, especially with the constant barrage of social media. You may wonder if your work is actually ‘up to par’ or feel like you just aren’t quite ‘there’ yet. 

I’m definitely not above feeling this slump. There are so many brilliant artists and it’s human nature to think ‘man, I wish I could do that.’ However, we need to remind ourselves that with creating, we must encourage appreciation of other’s works and use it as inspiration for our own. There is a quote I love to remind myself of during these slumps. Roughly stated, flowers don’t compete with other flowers, they bloom when they are meant to. 

So during your creative periods, here are some tips I’ve put together that help me when I start to compare!

1: Step away from the socials!!!
It’s just too much sometimes. Remember, it’s a highlight reel. Not everyone is winning a giant trophy while escaping laundry and dishes while relaxing on a yacht every single Tuesday. (Would be sweet, though!) 

  1. Accept that failure is part of the process. 

They aren’t all winners. Some of your work may make your head tilt slightly with a ‘whhhaaat…in the world..’ A few years later. Great work doesn’t come without its flops. Use. Every. Single. One. To fuel the focus on the next ‘winner’. Remind yourself that each person you may compare your work to also has a ton of failures they have never posted on their highlight reel. It’s all part of the process. Don’t let it become a hindrance.

  1. Use an art journal

Consistency is one of my weaknesses, plain and simple. However ‘easy’ something seems, my brain loves to make it complicated and messy. But I forced myself to start an art journal this year to monitor the progress of my paintings. Buy a little blank sketch book. Each time you think a piece is done, PRINT A SMALL PHOTO. True, honest print, and then glue it in the book, along with the original image. Mark notes about it, what you like, where the idea came from, what you think you would have done differently, and when the piece is TRULY FINISHED make another print. Glue it next to it. You will make a book of your growth and see your skills so clearly, even the most aggressively anxious brain can’t ruin that positivity!

So take a break, paint some pretties, start a journal, and get that creative juice flowing. It will soon be time to ‘bloom’ again!