The power of distraction

The plan to regularly use my new sketchbook to do a quick pen sketch a day has gone slightly awry. Various other commitments (and the last minute push to get a painting completed) have meant that I have had a bit of an output drought during the last half of February.

I have only managed to do 1.5 sketches in this time. Neither of these yielded anything particularly useful. I still need to loosen up and be far less precious with what I am doing. As the painting muse temporarily leaves me I become increasingly distracted by anything and everything useless and time wasting. It is a feeling akin to trying to meet a homework deadline at school where anything is a valid distraction to actually getting on with the task in hand.

Luckily a visit to Chester Zoo at the weekend has hopefully provided some motivation. Visiting the array of animals at the zoo, and taking numerous photographs, has provided some fresh impetus. Inspiration included:


Red pandas


Sheep (although these were not at the zoo)

And even ducks (although at the zoo these were there in the capacity of squatters in the grounds)

Plans are now afoot to use some of the images to create, amongst other things, some greeting card designs and a straightforward animal portrait painting. I often work more efficiently when juggling several projects at the same time. My current state of stasis means that I do not really have much to lose in terms of decreasing productivity by doing this.

I have been planning the Leicester series of paintings that I am currently meant to be working on for the past few years. Now that the opportunity has arisen to actually put my plans into action I seem to have literally frozen I think that by planning something for so long I have become a little risk averse to image making. I really need to get moving and not worry about the final outcome too much. Hopefully completing some more manageable mini-projects, such as the animal portrait, will encourage me to crack on and stop fretting.

Sorry that there is no actual work to premiere in this post. I thought that it may be useful to document this current lull and frustrating lack of physical output. Hopefully others experience similar lows? It would be interesting to hear how other creative types deal with creative lulls. I am sure that I am not the only one, am I?!

#ChesterZoo #Sketching #Inspiration #Nature

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