Thursday, September 25, 2008

5 Things To Do When Work Is Slow

1. Brainstorm/Sketch - Take the time to sit down and play with new ideas. Grab that sketchbook and let your pencil take flight... you may be surprised where it takes you. The most important thing is to just draw and let the creative juices flow. These sketches could lead to a new portfolio piece or may spark an idea for your next promotional mailer. 
2. Organize Your Studio - It's something that we all like to put off, but an organized studio creates a happier artist. Set a goal for yourself to place all of your important items within reach. A good rule of thumb is that you should be able to find whatever you are looking for in 60 seconds or less. Sound challenging? It can be, but really worth the effort. Be strict with yourself... discard items you aren't using (recycle, donate, sell) and organize the rest. And while you are in the midst of this cleaning frenzy, attack your computer as well. Time to do a backup and clean up that desktop. Archive old files and pictures, and catalogue the rest.
3. Touch Base With Clients - you know the old saying, out of sight, out of mind. Take the time to tell your clients that you enjoy working with them. Mail out a personal note and thank them for their business. 
4. Spread Your Wings - Think about your goals for the coming months. Is there something you have wanted to add to your creative roster of services? Now is the time to try a new medium or learn a new skill by taking a class. There are plenty of great online courses that you can take from the comfort of home.
5. Take a Breather - I know, it isn't easy to just sit back and relax. And now may not be the time to book that tropical getaway that you have been dreaming of, but taking a break from work doesn't mean you are lazy or need to be expensive. Make plans to meet a friend for coffee or lunch, go to the library and relax with a book, visit a local museum or gallery or just get out for a walk. 
Whatever you choose to do remember - the work will be pouring back in before you know it. Take a deep breath and enjoy this quiet time while you can... a bit of down-time is good for the creative soul. =)


Diana Evans said...

Hi Lisa...what a great post!!! I find that the days when I have no projects due and I grab my sketchbook I end up creating some cool are so right!!!

I have to start organizing my studio...and getting it into tip top shape....thanks for the inspiration.....

I will be back to this post every so often so thank you for sharing all this great information!!!


p.s. I wish I could share some treats with you tonight...

enigma said...

thank you Lisa, this is a very useful information. i will certainly need it!

Melissa and Emmitt said...

hi lisa!
what a wonderful post!
you are 100% right.
When I started my first business, I found myself stressing when i was sooooo busy and stressing when I was slow. I finally asked myself when was I allowing myself to have fun? The answer to that question changed my outlook on life and the answer was to stop and appreciate both situations and always have fun no matter what i was doing. if i was slow, I did the 5 things you so beautifully said. by doing even one of those things i felt productive, happy and moving forward.
great post lisa.

Bella Sinclair said...

Very adorable squirrel, and he's doing just what you're doing -- getting prepared. Really wonderful tips, and I'm not even in the business or have my own art desk. Still you gave me some good pointers and a good boost to get more productive.

Thanks so much for your visit!

Chrissy Fanslau said...

Great tips, Lisa, thanks! I should probably go start on your 2nd tip, I've been putting that off for a while. You know it's bad when you can't see the surface of your desk ... :O)

Have a great weekend!


Lisa M Griffin said...

Thanks Diana, I am glad that this post help inspire you in some way. The studio is always the one room in my house that looks truly "lived in" most of the time, but I always feel better and am more productive when its tidy.

Hi Engima, thanks for stopping in!

Melissa, you are one of the most productive artists I know, so it feels good knowing that you agree with these tips and have used them as well. =)

Thanks for coming by Bella and I hope this post is helpful to you in the future.

Chrissy, so good to see you here... hope you do find the time to tackle your work space. Roll up those sleeves and just dive in! =)

Carli said...

hi lisa,
great ideas. thanks for visiting my blog and the comment you left.

Jennifer said...

Good to be reminded that down time can still be productive! :-)

Fannie said...

Inspiring post! Thank you for sharing.

Dominic Philibert said...

Beautiful drawings!!!!!!!!

marianne said...

What a great post. Thank you!
Sure I think you must have some slow time to let creative ideas bubble to the surface.
Your ideas are great too to tidy up the studio, sure that is necessary sometimes as well.
I´m having my morning coffee now and later today I will have a mandala exchange with someone I know. I look forward to that!
I´m going to tidy up the house and make lunch.
Have a nice weekend Lisa!

Chickengirl said...

We all need a little reminder as to what to do when work is slow (instead of freaking out!!!) A great post!