How to keep creatively stimulated during lockdown?

Written by: Kim and Sally, designers, illustrators and outdoor wanderers, believe that opening up to experiencing the world around them can drive their creativity to new levels. They’ll often be found meeting on hilltops and brainstorming in forests with their laptops and sketchbooks in hand. Their creative skills span branding, illustration, print, digital and much more.

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As creative folk, we are some of the lucky ones. Time, locked away with nothing but your imagination cries out for those personal creative projects that you’ve always long wished you had time for. Writing, drawing. sewing, coding, singing - there are a plethora of creative outlets available to us and often the one commodity that held us back was time. Something that we’re now drowning in. This is easy for me to say as a child-free creative, for those with children - your creative skills have had to go up a level, never mind a high-pressure pitch to the board of multinational corporate clients, you now have to be the teacher, entertainer, sports coach, chef and parent to the highest pressured bored (see what I did there?!) members …your children. 

But, for those brief moments of escape, we all need to try and keep our creativity stimulated. When the world looks so uncertain, and money and health anxiety are racing through everyone's minds at a million miles an hour every minute, you can feel too mentally exhausted to even think for a second about flexing your creative muscle. But we promise you, the escape that it offers, getting lost in a project is a good honest tonic at the moment. 

So how have we managed it thus far?

1) Routine: A little piece of normality in what is not, in any sense of the word, a normal situation we're now all facing. But getting up each morning, showered, dressed and eating a hearty breakfast before settling down for a day of work feels like such a positive start. Whether you then manage to achieve any work after that point is by the by - but you've given yourself the best chance you can. 

2) Change your expectations: You WILL NOT be working at the same mental capacity that you were before. As we’ve mentioned, your mind will be a roller coaster of ‘Is the world actually ending??’ to ‘It’s actually really nice to slow down for a while’ with every second that passes - so be gentle with yourself. Even if that means that just getting dressed and sitting at your desk for a while was your accomplishment for that day, that’s pretty damn good.  

3) Stay connected: We may all be alone, or just with our household at the minute, but we live in a wondrous digital world which means we can stay connected with our friends, family and work colleagues all day. So make the most of it, have a call and a chat and remind yourself that you’re not alone in this. Chatting through a creative idea with someone always sparks something, trust us. 

4) Do what you love: If your brain can’t take sitting on a laptop, or the words aren’t flowing - sketch for a while, or paint, or play the piano, take some photographs - try something new, change location and do something you know you love.