Getting Out of a Rut · Drawing All The Time #1 · semiskimmedmin

Getting Out of a Rut · Drawing All The Time #1 · semiskimmedmin


It’s Friday. It’s half one. And today is the day that I start drawing
all the time. I’ve been wanting to start a new video series
for a while, and I knew what kind of content I wanted, and I had a lot of suggestions from
you guys that were pretty much the same as what I had in mind…. I wanted to keep the sort of casual, informal,
but also at least somewhat valuable nature that I had with my sketchbook series. It’s been great to see how me sharing my
experiences and things I’ve learned and mistakes I’ve made can help other people
and just start a discussion, to where we’re all sharing our experiences and learning from
each other. In terms of the format of the videos, I’m
not 100% sure yet, that’s where your feedback comes in. But for today, I like watching videos where
people draw and talk so I’m gonna draw and I’m gonna talk. So, in terms of the ‘drawing all the time’
thing. At the moment I’m really pushing this draw
every day mantra for myself. Trying to make art a solid habit in my life. I’ve said this before but, the key to improving
and evolving as an artist is to create as much as possible, and not rely on being inspired
to be able to create, let the constant flow of productivity and creativity be what fuels
the inspiration. And to do that, the habit of drawing constantly
has to be as entrenched in you as something like brushing your teeth. And I thought what better way to motivate
me to really commit to this than to share that journey of consistant art-making with
you guys. And just talk through how I’m doing it,
how it’s going, what issues I have, how I deal with them. This can be like my Big Brother diary room,
where I come back after a week of trying to draw as much as I can and let you know how
it’s going. Show you what I drew, a bit of the how and
the why… I’ve also been really keen to show more
of the behind the scenes of the art process… of the art making process. And show more of how art fits into real life,
how I find the time…. So that’s what we’re doing. That was a long intro. I fell like these videos are gonna be such
a departure from my concise, straight-to-the-point videos. That’s something I’ve been probably the
most nervous about. Just this like free-form rambling. A lot of you might prefer the short and sweet
but I guess for that you can watch my speed-paintings. This is gonna be my chatty… chatty… not
knowing what I’m talking about… kind of video. So what I’m doing at the moment, I’m actually
playing catch up in my sketchbook. This is my new Stillman and Birn sketchbook,
its a one of their… zeta series, I’ve been using it as like a visual diary, the
same way I do my travel journals, documenting the days with pictures with drawings and writing
and also just using it for my usual doodles and studies and concept stuff. But my aim has been to do one drawing a day
based on something that happened that day or the previous day. But, in all my umming and arring about the
new series and also going on holiday, finishing my moleskin, I’ve been generating the ideas,
but not had the time to record them and missing loads of days in between. So at the moment I’m sort of playing catch
up, filling in the gaps and that’s what I’m doing today. Today’s page is in amongst the beginning
bits and bobs, this week is actually linked back to my moleskin, there are pages in that
sketchbook that lead into this one for me. This was a week of being in a major creative
funk. It was actually way back at the end of March. I had decided I wanted to draw more constantly
but I was really struggling to draw at all. The weird thing is I felt productive, or motivated,
I had the energy and desire to do things, but for whatever reason, actually doing things
and art things in particular felt really daunting. I do occasionally have different kinds of
funks, but as far as they go, this was a pretty decent one. Because I was still getting out of bed and
doing things. Well I still spent a lot of time in bed but…
that’s just what I do. But because I am kind of used to that feeling,
I knew more or less how to deal with it. The first and most important thing is to not
be like mad at yourself. It’s really frustrating to want to do something
but at the same time feel like something is holding you back or you’re holding yourself
back. But getting down on yourself about it, throwing
blame and judgement, is never gonna help. I just kind of thought, okay, this is how
I feel, not loving it but I can deal with it. So… the thought of drawing at that point,
for whatever reason, filled me with dread. I tried to feel like less of a bum by getting
on with other, kind of art things, art business things like packing orders, responding to
comments, stuff like that. Also tidying, keeping a tidy space for me
just welcomes calm and an openness to do things and keep going. And that was the start of it. Being gentle with myself, acknowledging how
I was feeling, what I could and didn’t really feel like doing. And then the next thing is… if you find
yourself afraid or hesitant to make art, don’t let that stop you being creative. If there’s something in you that really
wants to just do something even if it doesn’t involve putting a pen to paper, keep that
spark alive in any way you can. For me, at this time, my boyfriends birthday
was coming up, I’d got him a lens for his camera and I had the bright idea that I’d
make a heart shaped gift box to put it in so he wouldnt know what it was straight away. I’ve never made a heart shaped gift box before,
I never thought I’d be that person. But I was in a making mood. Even though I didn’t want to draw I wanted
to create and thats important to recognise when you’re in a rut. It isn’t always an overarching thing. Sometimes it is, but be open to exploring
other avenues, don’t write yourself off and say well I’m not gonna do anything cos
I’m not in the mood or it’ll turn out badly. So anyway I made this box, it wasn’t great,
I got glue everywhere. And yeah, I am always in my bed, I definitely
should spend more time at my desk, but when I am feeling a bit fragile or anxious, I’ll
always at least give myself that. I’m allowed to stay in bed as long as I’m
doing something. You gotta go easy on yourself without letting
yourself get away with murder, You gotta be good cop and bad cop to yourself. And that really helped, it was a lot of fun,
I felt accomplished and I kind of thought, okay maybe I can potentially do some drawing. I’m just setting up my laptop so I can have
my reference images to look at while I draw. So yeah I got to point where I thought maybe
potentially I can do some drawing. Still in my bed, and still actually in my
moleskin, I grabbed the first pen I could find which was a pink fineliner and I just
kind of started doodling. And it was pretty horrible. Like, I mean it doesn’t look great, but
it also wasn’t like this immediate breath-of-fresh-air experience. I don’t know if this is something people
can relate to. I think we all kind of assume that people
who do art and love art should love every moment of it and especially if you’re just
doodling for the sake of it. But the reality for me, and I’m sure for
other people is that it can be kind of torturous sometimes and it sucks when something you
love doesn’t bring you the joy that it normally would. I’m just gonna interject quickly, I hope
this isn’t all too much of a downer. And like I’m fine. I hope it’s okay for me to talk about these
things that aren’t the most positive. This is still just me having a chat, it’s
probably just a bit more raw than what I would usually do. But yeah, if we look at the stuff I did while
I was just trying to draw for the sake of drawing, I have my moleskin here and you would
have seen it in my sketchbook tour, I can just remember how I was feeling at the time
BUT I was TRYING. I even watched this Blender video on youtube,
something like ‘7 Habits of Effective Artists’, took notes, to kind of make my youtube procrastination
slightly worthwhile, but yeah. And even in this mess, see heres the reason
I always look back and appreciate pushing myself to just put a pen onto the paper, cos
out of all this mess there’s this random wheel I drew and I like that. I feel like that’s useable. Next day again, I tried to just put pen on
paper, cos I felt up to it. Had a different outcome. I ended up just writing this so not the drawings. But um, I’m not gonna show what I wrote,
hopefully you can’t read it. I don’t know what it says, it’s the kind
of thing I think I just wrote just to get it out, Ihave no real desire to read that
over again. But I can say that it helped. I had allowed myself the satisfaction of being
able to say I had done another page in my sketchbook. I achieved something. You could literally practice drawing straight
lines. I do that sometimes. As long as you congratulate yourself snd appreciate
yourself for putting in the work, you’re gonna be moving in the right direction. And gradually, that heavy feeling kind of
lifts. You feel a little bit more able. So that’s what this is about. Blind contour drawings as I came out of the
rut, great way to ease back in to drawing more creatively. No pressure, bit of fun, occasional spark
of something. Like this face looking down. I like this one a lot. Down here I even wrote, ‘feeling much better,
back in a stride of sorts. creating again and out of bed. those are the important things.’ So just to recap the points so far in getting
out of a rut. By the way, I do have a little cheat-sheet
down here of my talking points so I don’t go too off course. So, acknowledge the feeling without judgement. Do what you can / do something / do anything. Explore other creative avenues. Ease back into it. The next thing, which also kind of ties into
my ‘writing how I felt’ bit, but the next thing is to get it out. However your feeling, try not to just hold
onto it and let it fester inside you. If you’re frustrated or disappointed in
yourself, your art whatever, you can write it down but I do think it’s better to talk
to someone. It doesn’t have to be a deep, soul-baring
chat. You don’t have to get completely into it,
just kind of saying out loud, yeah I’m kind of frustrated at the moment, I’m a bit stressed,
my art isn’t going how I want it to, my creativity feels stunted. It helps with processing how you’re feeling
and cycling that feeling from rolling around in your head, out of you and into the world. A lot of people who maybe aren’t into art
or stuff like that, they might not necessarily understand. But I don’t really share those feelings
to get comfort or validation, I just like having a bit of a back and forth with someone,
maybe changing my perspective. I talk to my mum a lot, again not in depth,
but just you know, it was a tough drawing-day today, I couldn’t really manage to make
anything I liked. She always has like the typical mum advice
but just the act of me saying how I was feeling to someone else, lifts a weight. And it was actually after talking to Ozzy
that I got that final little spark, that bit that you hope and wait for when you’re in
a creative slump, where it’s like, the fog clears and ‘I wanna draw right now and I
can’t wait.’ It was his suggestion that I would say is
the biggest contributor to my getting out of a rut. Obviously you all know I’m not huge on going
out and about, I’m a proper homebody, whenever I watch any kind of advice video where one
of the tips is like ‘go out and have a walk”, like deep down I know that it would probably,
definitely help, but at the same time… I could really just not. But yeah I was kind of at this hurdle of,
I feel fine now, I’m feeling positive, I’ve got my life together, I’m not down about
my lack of creating, but there’s still no spark. It’s stopped raining but the sun hasn’t
come out yet. And he goes, ‘Well why don’t we go to
the Tate or something’, the Tate Modern gallery, here in London. And my first reaction, genuinely was like…
‘mmmm, I don’t think that’s gonna inspire me in the way I need inspiring. But yeah I guess we can go.’ And then like, within a day of that conversation,
so before we’d even gone… That was it. I was excited again. About art. I had ideas and I was looking into what they
had on at the gallery and thinking about what bits I wanted to see and also just being out
by the river in the fresh air. The anticipation was a breath of fresh air
and it was that one final push to get back into things. And that’s when I drew stuff like this and
this, just having fun, feeling like I had a bit of purpose again. A few days later we had a great day at the
gallery, I did some doodles while I was there and afterwards as well. I actually have a bit of history with the
Tate Modern. Back when I was at uni, I was studying English
and Spanish, I love languages, I love learning languages, and I love literature, but I didn’t
love university. For whatever reason, I just felt ‘like this
isn’t it, this isn’t what I wanna be doing with my life’. And this is before I had even really considered
pursuing a career in art. I have a blog post I’ll link below where
I talk about that situation in a bit more detail. But yeah, that time was essentially, the biggest
rut in my life. I felt stuck. And my campus, I went to King’s College
by the way, its a lovely uni. My campus was just across the river from the
Tate. So when I’d inevitably end up skipping my
lectures because I really wanted anything but to be there, I’d have a wander, go to
starbucks, walk across the millennium bridge and just I guess be drawn to the gallery. Just wander around in there. And it was a little pocket of peace and quiet. And it made me just feel calm and grounded. I don’t know if its just the Tate that does
that, I’m sure it isn’t, I think it was just the nearest thing to me at the time. Just being in that kind of space is like a
breath of fresh air. Galleries and museums and even libraries or
big art supply shops, they have this quality to them of like, something so impressive and
stable and secure. And you just finally have room to think. But yeah, I guess that final tip for getting
out of a rut, the most difficult for me but the most worthwhile; make plans, go out and
seek inspiration. Don’t wait for it to come to you. Give yourself something to get excited about. Just to go over all the things one last time; Acknowledge the feeling without judgement. Do what you can / do something / do anything. Explore other creative avenues. Ease back into it. Talk it out / let it go
Make plans and give yourself something to get excited about So for the rest of that week I ended up going
out actually too much. That’s be something I think I may talk about
in another video like finding the balance between your social life and drawing all the
time. Finding time.. finding time for it basically. I hope that me sharing my experience will
help some of you guys who have been in the same kind of funks. I’d love to know if anyone has their own
tips for that. I’d also love to know if anyone’s still
watching. And I’d love to get your feedback on this
style of video, obviously it’s early days so if you have any suggestions I’m all ears. But I’ve really enjoyed talking to you all
and sketching and I can’t wait to do it again. Thanks so much for watching, I’ll see you
next time. Bye!

100 thoughts on “Getting Out of a Rut · Drawing All The Time #1 · semiskimmedmin”

  1. I watch these videos even though I barely do art (although I'm starting!) because I suffer from depression and anxiety and am going through a bad phase at the moment and I find your videos insanely soothing. And this video is comforting and full of good advice about how to get out of any kind of rut, it's lovely. Thank you.

  2. i love this format, and watching you paint while listening to you was calming. I appreciate that you're honest and doing something to change things. thank you.

  3. This was the most helpful talk I've heard in a long time. I'm 10+ years in on making a living off of my art (designer/sign maker) and sometimes it is such a struggle. It's never anything serious but I sincerely hate losing a weeks worth of work/pay/play to my mood or feelings.
    Be patient with yourself, accept what can't be changed, change what can. Great advice, thank you…

  4. I loved this style of video! It was so chilled and honest and inspiring, a winning combination. Really looking forward to seeing more! I'm off to dig out my sketchbooks.

  5. i love this bc i know this motivates me to draw w you but the only problem is that im not learning/drawing off reference (im not confident enough to draw on my own just yet)

  6. i loved this format of video. i've been in a terrible art rut and this has given me ideas to get out of it. thank you for all you do! please continue to make these

  7. This format is really comforting 😛 I was recently in a rut where I would stay in bed with my supplies staring at me, and I would wonder 'whyyyy I don't want to get up to do this thing that I love!'
    This video has really helped me feel better :")
    thanks!

  8. I really enjoyed watching this while I was doing my own thing. Your videos are so helpful to me and I hope you make more videos like this

  9. I'm also studying languages but I don't find myself in what I'm doing anymore. I feel like I have to CREATE something and I've recently decided to start drawing again and oh you are my greatest inspiration!! Thank you so so much!!!

  10. Four months ago my sketchbook (which I took around with me everywhere) was stolen from my bag at my on stage ballet rehearsals for our spring show. Inside were drawings and ideas I really cared about and loved. After that had happened, I stopped drawing for almost a month or two. I fell into a creative rut of sorts, feeling like I had no more ideas left. But then I watched your videos and it felt like my creative switch had been turned back on. I got a new sketchbook and started to draw and paint again. So I just wanted to thank you for inspiring my to get back to art again. Honestly you're absolutely amazing. Thank you so much!

  11. I feel as though I haven't truly gotten into a drawing for months now, but 2 minutes into this video I was craving the emotional release with pencil onto paper. You really inspire me and bring the inner spark of creativity back into me. Thank you!

  12. Thank you for making this. I'm trying to get my freelance career off the ground, and this reminded me that it's okay to feel overwhelmed even though I love what I do

  13. I love these sorts of video! Just because it's like meeting up with a friend to talk and draw with them- I feel good because I got to talk to a friend AND get some drawing done. It's actually what I try to do when I get into ruts, because at the end of the day I feel proud and accomplished that I managed to get in some daily drawing without feeling too pressured and having fun 🙂

  14. Your videos are very inspirational to me, and your voice is so soothing! <3 I love the layouts of your pages. I usually use spiral bound sketchbooks, but I think I need to try the books you are using. They look really great for pasting things in. Thanks so much!

  15. Thank you for sharing your rut experience and escape strategies so thoughtfully, honestly and conversationally! This was so very helpful, beyond what you can know…! I love your art and your life wisdom – beyond your years!

  16. Love love love this. At first I saw it was 22 minutes and thought I might just watch a little bit but I kept watching. You made 22 minutes feel like 5. Omg I would love to see more of these. And your sketchbook work is beautiful!!!!

  17. I have the same issue of just wanting to be home. I know it would make me feel better to go out and even see my friends but I don't. And I feel like I shouldn't reach out to my friends because they haven't reached out to me. I don't want to be that person you know?

  18. I watched the whole thing 🙂 I wouldn't mind an even longer video like this one because then I can't sit down and create with you!

  19. thank you so much for showing your work. you are honestly a huge inspiration to me. i'm young and oblivious to the real world, but i've felt hopeless and, well, in a rut lately. but your videos have brought back my passion for art and your unique and BRILLIANT talent is breathtaking. thank you so much

  20. I've watched this video a few times now, I love this series because I put it on while I am sitting down to paint because it feels like I'm painting with a friend who keeps me in check with feeling too down about my art. Thank you for producing content like this and thank you for everything you do. BTW love the Wu-Tang shirt 🙂

  21. Still watching! Just stumbled across your video and I'm so happy I did! I pulled out my knockoff wacom from my drawer for the first time in two years, and I'm super grateful to you for putting this together. Felt like it was just the thing I needed to get me motivated and doodling again. Thank you <3

  22. Dear Minnie, I stumbled upon this video totally by accident and I loved it! Getting through a rough patch as a creative or even as a person having only a few hours a week create art is very common. Thank you for your tips, I will certainly watch more of your videos, I love your authenticity and openness! Cheers from Germany

  23. Hello, I'm delighted that I've discovered you,.I'm a new artist and having lots of fun with watercolor sketches. I just bought the portable painter for my next adventure (11 countries in Europe) and I'm very interested in what colors you have in your palette. Would you share those with me? Thank you very much, you're a very talented artist and I just know that you'll go very far with your art.

  24. Love your videos, there's this just amazing atmosphere and vibe. I was wondering if you have any tips for larger sketchbooks, such as A2 so that there is still that sort of small sketchy and artistic feel to it even though it's just massive…..

  25. You have such a lovely voice and a calm way about you. I feel so serene when I watch your videos. I can't imagine you suffer from anxiety. Anyways, good job with the art and videos…

  26. I really like this type of format, your voice is very soothing, so I like to watch and listen as I am drawing, love your art and you are very inspiring, keep it up, you are great!

  27. Wow Minnie you're into Wu Tang? You should totally do a video where you drop some ODB lyrics with your classy accent

  28. thanks for this video i watched it all! it was what i needed to watch! 🙂 I live in Sydney and I am going to go to the art museum this weekend! I look forward to more videos xo

  29. i love your videos, seems like you put in a lot of time and effort into them. i really appreciate it. and i think you talk v intellectually. hope things are always going extremely well for you. and as always, your art is super high quality ♡

  30. I clicked on the blog link and instead of taking me to that blog post, it just took me to the main homepage of your site.

  31. i just found your channel and i love everything you've made but especially this series! its so casual and comfortable, plus youre so well spoken. its wonderful just listening to you talk about art stuff, kind of like a really good podcast. but with the added bonus of such a relaxing aesthetic!! v lovely :>

  32. As an artist that has depression, this video is really inspiring. I'm trying my hardest to get my life back together and I have to constantly tell myself to be positive and acknowledge victories no matter how trivial. It's so hard to that when you are battling your own mind.

  33. Me encantan todos tus vídeos y la forma de abordarlos… así no entienda en ingles, no interesa, logro captar tus ideas.
    Muchas gracias y espero que sigas adelante con tus vídeos, asi son increíbles, son muy humanos e inspiran cercanía.

  34. What a cute and inspiring girl you are. I am loving watching your videos. If ever I really do make any sort of living out of art, these videos and your thoughts, ideas and instructions will be one of the big rocks I will have built my foundations with.

  35. Positive or negative conversation isn't the biggest deal to me. I love your videos because they're so calming & make me relaxed enough to do my own art. So thank you.

    P.S. I much prefer these chatty videos & your accent is so adorable ❤️❤️ Keep it up

  36. Yes i so feel like I don’t always love to draw even though I love to draw normally.. it’s reassuring that you feel so sometimes too! And I really like this format of videos! I like to play them in the background when I draw.. 🙂

  37. your videos are what i watch during meditation time 🙂 really like your voice, it has a sense of calmness & peace.

  38. Found your channel a few days ago and have watched several videos so far. I'm impressed. Can you imagine what it would have been like for Salvador Dali, Georgia O'Keefe, or Frida Kahlo to have YouTube? It would have been amazing for all of us so thank you for being relatable.

  39. Minnie, please keep being yourself – I learn oodles from you! Your transparency is a huge motivator for me to not judge myself and be OK with my process, too. Lovin’ your vids, girl. You’re AWESOME 👏

  40. I love this sort of video. I've been listening to your videos all day and they make me feel very peaceful. You give great advice. I feel like I've been on a quest, creatively, trying to find the next thing and you're helping me to process that and figure out who am and want to be as an artist.

  41. Hi Minnie.

    One year and 10 days later I find this video. I want to say… thank you. Thank you for giving me a light to the end of my "slump" mood tunnel, which has been too long – weeks actually. Everything you have spoken about has resonated with me deeply and I am sure with other people too. I love being creative and yes you are right. When I am just sitting watching TV, have something in my hands so I feel that I am creating. I love that idea. Be kind to myself when I feel guilty about not creating. You are very encouraging and inspiring. Thank you Minnie. You are a blessing. I have Scribed. ♥

  42. Watching this while in a rut really gave me motivation to keep working. Thank you so much for making these videos. ❤🌟❤

  43. I’m so glad I found your channel!!! You’re amazing and very confident even when in a “rut”! Thank you for sharing all that you create!

  44. I've watched this video countless times when I was also in a 'rut'. I really appreciate your words of wisdom and insight! Listening to it really just fires me up! Thank you 🙂

  45. Your honesty in these videos is really encouraging for a beginner artist thanks so much, great videos! Your following is also very polite what a great environment ^^

  46. It was great to see, and video was totally right for the subject. Just the right length to browse through it. I have some as well that I reminisce about =)

  47. I love watching your speed art. This was very helpful…I think that I will watch this particular video again but the next time l'll get cozy with a snack and beverage.

    I love your background music. It really sets the tone for your content.

    Have you done any tutorials on how you edit and what equipment you use??

    Have a peaceful one mam.😊🎨☝💙

  48. The in bed thing is so important for me. Sometimes I have a hard time getting out of bed to be productive, but I know I have to push myself to do work.

  49. I love this! It´s so inspiring to hear someone else talk about the problems and feelings you can have with your art.
    This helped me so much, i had an art runt for so long and put myself down for it… But hearing you talk about it, and that its normal and I'm not alone made such a huge difference in how I look at my art and my abilities as an artist!
    Love you! <3

  50. Ok seriously this helped me so much. It made me calm down about my art block and realize it's just a part of this journey. Thank you and NEW SUB! 🙂 Looking forward to your new videos!!

  51. Trying different avenues is such a HUGE piece of advice I hope everyone takes from you. Personally, I grew up drawing with pencils, I practiced every day and early in my 20's I developed tendonitis in both wrists and my right elbow. I am right handed =(. there would be weeks and even months when it hurt too much for me to grip the pencil after my workday. I would get depressed that I couldn't create anything. Now, 5-6 years later I am learning to paint–which almost never hurts my wrists–and make collages on some of my sketchbook pages. Every time someone is in a rut I hope they take this advice, it will lift their spirits!

  52. ❤❤❤❤ i watch/listen your videos while doing my art its inspiring and motivating and calming. Helps me focus and not feel alone. Thank u keep doing ur thing

  53. im currently doing my art GCSEs and im so glad i found your channel, i watched all your videos in a day i love your mindset so much you've inspired me out of a rut and all your work so beautiful to me i love how you just be your amazing self on camera thank you never stop posting xx (your travel journals are my fav, but don't feel discouraged to show your face more in chatty videos they are equally as fun to watch).

  54. I love your style! This video was very comforting. It’s hard for me to stay positive when I’m in a rut but it’s encouraging to know I’m not alone

  55. Tears in my eyes and a lump in my throat… you've touched my heart and resonated with my experiences. Thank you sweet girl

  56. Love it. I’ve recently decided to focus on drawing on my channel, but all I could think of was basic pencil drawings for now 🤷‍♀️ Your videos are very creative and inspiring. Giving me ideas for the future 😁💕 and this was beautiful! YouTube is a goldmine of ideas 🤩no reason to ever be stuck ever again 😊

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