The “No-Enthusiasm Zone”
June 22, 2020
Dear Allyson,

Can you give me some advice? I have become utterly trapped in a 'no-enthusiasm zone', have been here for over a year now. Haven't written or painted anything. Have you got any ideas about how to get out of this?


Ask Allyson Image
Nature of Mind (Panel 7) by Alex Grey
Dear Stephen,

Thanks so much for writing and for keeping CoSM in your heart. Noticed that I have two other messages from you - one from 2015 and one back in 2013. You lived in Thailand and wanted to create a graphic novel. Wonder if that happened or began?

Sounds like you want to paint and something kills your enthusiasm? Are you bored with your subject ideas? What really turns you on? How about nudes? Find a place with open figure drawing sessions. Many college and extension programs offer them. Or create one and invite friends. Hire a model and make it a social setting with wine and music. Or hiking? Create an outdoor kit that fits on your back and plan a day hike for drawing/painting. Invest in the best material’s that turn you on. Ask for suggestions if you need them regarding best materials.

To jump start your art back into gear, think of what turns you on and create a mini event around it. Join a workshop and be social in it. Visit Amanda Sage’s Vision Train of Visionary Artists, an open studio Zoom Room, open 24/7 with artists talking about their work as many continue painting, speaking up when they’d like. In pandemic times, The Vision Train has been a comfort to many artists.

Sometimes we have to just begin and the transition phase may be awkward. Try new materials, definitely the best brushes, a new surface - smaller, larger, a wood panel if you’ve been using canvas...  Look at art you love. Museums and galleries will reopen soon. Go... and bring a sketch book. Always carry a sketchbook and use it. Maybe you’d rather animate or draw in Photoshop, Illustrator, Z Brush, or some other program. Do it! 

Sharing the journey, as you have with me in this message, is a jump start in itself. Tell me, if you have a clue, why you are bored or intimidated to pursue your artwork?

Thanks again for a question that plagues artists from time to time.


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