View Full Version : how do get through burn out?

03-25-2005, 02:09 PM
What is your advice for getting through burn-out? I'm not talking about an artists block. I have lots of ideas, just no desire to do them. I've been doing little thumbnails & writing notes, so when I get thru this creative slump I have stuff to work on.

I've tried to switch back and forth in different medias (sculpting, acrylic, watercolor, & colored pencil) and that hasn't helped like it usually does.

I think partially my job may be contributing to the burn out, I am a designer in a small sign shop, so most of my creative juice if you will gets used at work, by the time I get home I just don't want to do anything arty.

I am going back to college in the fall to get a certificate to become a pharmaceutical technician. I'm hoping once I am away from the graphic design field, I'll want to do art at home.

Anyone else have this happen to them? How did you cope?

Rose Queen
03-25-2005, 02:31 PM
This doesn't sound very helpful, I'm afraid, but sometimes, you just need to let the creative well refill itself. There's a lot of stuff going on in your life right now that you need to pay attention to, so keep making your notes and you'll have plenty to work on when the inspiration level rises in the well. C'mon over to the Creativity forum and hang out with fellow sufferers -- it can't hurt!

watercolor girl
03-25-2005, 04:57 PM
I experienced this about a year and a half ago. I do mostly commissioned paintings and just got to the point that if I did one more painting of someone's cat or dog or house or car I would go nuts. I just stopped painting all together for about a year. It meant turning down work and telling people no but I needed the break. I have recently started painting again with new passion and desire and I am painting better than I ever have. The only problem - I now need to build my business all over again. I am sort of starting from scratch. But I definitely relate to your feelings of burn out and, for me at least, a total rest from art altogether was what I needed.

Charlie's Mum
03-30-2005, 04:30 PM
I sympathise totally!
When I was teaching art all day at school, I just couldn't find the energy to paint for myself - by the time prep and other probs were sorted, my own time got pushed down the line.
Even after retiring, and promising myself I'd paint, there was always an excuse not to! Life just got in the way! - an occasional commission was done, but not much else :eek:
Five years ago, a change of house, joining an Art club for the first time ever got me lifting pencil and brush again, but the real impetus was WC!
I really felt rejuvenated and now resent other things stopping me!
I still love teaching when people ask me but it's no longer a necessity.

Your change of direction may well be your shining moment - for now, just enjoy looking until inspiration strikes :D

Good luck with the new course in both job and life - it will be a complete change from designing!

03-30-2005, 06:06 PM
I would quit doing art altogether. I didn't even think about art. I would get involved in another activity that I enjoy. Sometimes it lasts a couple of weeks, sometimes a couple of months but I always come back with renewed interest. I tryed switching mediums and what not and it helped for a while but I just needed to totally get away from it. It's not my profession so I can afford to do that. :)

03-31-2005, 12:29 AM
Sometimes drinking helps me. I cant force myself through a slump, nothing comes out right. Also long discussions with my closest friend and art peer about art and the state of the art world usually inspires me to start again. Did I suggest a little drinking?

03-31-2005, 10:41 AM
Clean your brushes then put all your art materials away and just forget about it all for a year or more and all your old enthusiasm will come back and you will probably find that your first painting after a long break will be a great work of art.


03-31-2005, 11:17 AM
Sometimes drinking helps me. I cant force myself through a slump, nothing comes out right. Also long discussions with my closest friend and art peer about art and the state of the art world usually inspires me to start again. Did I suggest a little drinking?

Drinking? Maybe I'll try that :D

I put away all my art supplies for the moment, I'm going to reorganize my studio this weekend, so I can have it in some semblance of order, once I get through this.

One thing I can say about burn-out, It lets me spend more time on WC. :evil:

04-14-2005, 12:46 AM
The time spent on WC may just help you get back.....Pain_ter :wave:
Wish you well on your journey...sometimes our journey takes other paths that will lead to the beginning again.

04-15-2005, 05:32 AM
I haven't been through burn-out as an artist yet -but have been there in my teaching career. You give and you give and you give, till the fire that feeds your passion feeds on your soul and threatens to smother it.
I go along with the advice of 'give it a break* . When given time to heal it will come back at you with no way to stop it.
Be kind to yourself.
Recognising burn-out is a damn good thing - it means its not gonna kill you :)
The well will re-fill itself
Kia kaha

04-15-2005, 05:36 AM
and then again -there's drinking :D

04-16-2005, 04:22 AM
My advice is to go clean a few cupboads, read a few good books...one trashy one ...then one excellent art book....and so on.....keep sketching...pick up a camera.....look at a lot of art....WC's very good for that.... :wink2:
....or alternately do what makes you feel good....(sometimes a change of job is the best thing... :D )
cheers kim
ps...grats on the new position as Mod.... Trish...yahoo........you sound like me...lol.....teaching...drinking.... :D ...maybe there's a link.... :eek: :eek: