5 tips to help you establish a daily drawing habit
Many people have conflicted feelings toward creativity. You made be intensely passionate about it, love the way you feel when you’re practicing it, the places it takes you, and the ways it enables you to express yourself, but it’s hard to justify prioritizing time for it. It causes you fear, feelings of inadequacy, of being judged, of being vulnerable.
Creativity is fundamental, not just something to which we seldomly “treat” ourselves. It’s a means of expressing things inside us we don’t have words for, of solving problems and spreading ideas, of stress relief and self-fulfillment, of feeling passion and pride.
This is why I created Making Art Everyday. It’s a series of drawing prompts, tutorials, and motivation designed to help you establish a daily art-making practice. Developing this habit for yourself is beneficial in so many ways. Not only will you improve your artistic skills, but you will gain confidence, improve critical thinking and mental health, and embody a sense of pride in yourself. Read more about joining the Making Art Everyday challenge here.
A habit is something you do so often that doing it is no longer a question for you. It takes some effort to establish a habit, but once you do, it literally serves you. Here are some tips for how to stay motivated in your art-making habit.
1. Set a fixed time to do it every day
It’s a lot harder to keep up with a habit if you are only squeezing it in when you have the time. Instead, make an appointment with yourself at the same time each day. This can be just before work, while you eat your lunch, or in the evening when the house quiets down. It’s important that it’s a time that can work for you and that you can keep consistent with. My best time to sit down and draw is after my kids are in bed.
2. Set a timer
Set out to draw for just 10 minutes. Knowing that you’ll only be spending a small amount of time drawing might help you feel less intimidated, and getting started really is the hardest part. More often than not, you’ll find yourself reaching the end of that time and want to keep going — that’s great! It means you are feeling motivated.
3. Join a community
Being able to connect with others that share the same goal and are experiencing the same struggles as you can be a huge help. As MAE has grown, so has the community. It can be helpful and motivating to know that you’re a part of something big. Also, your efforts to support others will also motivate yourself! Join our Making Art Everyday facebook group to give and receive additional support from fellow MAE artists.
4. Don’t let your misses get you down
Life happens, and you will miss days. Don’t dwell on it. Remember that drawing 305 or 278 days of a year is still a huge accomplishment. Every minute you spend drawing is valuable, improves your skills, and contributes to your goals. If life gets busy and you need to take a break, don’t feel bad that you’ve missed out on prompts. Just join back in wherever we’re currently at. If the days’ prompt doesn’t inspire you, go back to the prompts you missed and pick one that sounds fun!
5. Think of it as a discipline
A discipline is a commitment to yourself. You are training yourself to behave in a certain way — in this case, drawing every day. You may not feel like drawing some days, but you CAN do it. Always remember the reason you started doing this in the first place.