Inspired to Write by Drawing Bad Pictures

Silver Gull

Silver gull between sea and sky by Timmy Toucan via Flickr

New writing ideas can come to you when doing creative things that don’t involve writing

Try leaving your project and go away from your usual writing place. Take blank paper and coloured pencils, pens or whatever you have lying around, then let your mind wander. Draw or doodle without thinking too hard. This helps you relax and new ideas can sneak in.

Don’t limit creativity to just one medium

“ . . . It doesn’t matter if you can’t draw – use stick figures – but this can help jolt you out of your comfort zone, allowing you to approach a problem in a new way. If you’re a painter, try making up a tune and words for a song. If you’re a graphic designer, use modeling clay or create a collage. Don’t limit your creativity to just one medium.”

From 10 Great Ways to Jumpstart Your Creativity by Ali Hale.

There was a time when I decided to learn drawing. I carried around pencils and a sketchbook everywhere I went. With practise, my drawings became more and more recognisable with less and less need to use an eraser. I enjoyed the soft scratchy sound of pencil on paper, the smell of the shavings and it was a pleasure to make lines and shading into something that looked alright. In the end I didn’t even care if the finished drawing was good or not, I loved the process.

I have spent happy hours sitting at a picnic table near Coogee Beach drawing silver gulls. The more I drew the more I realised every gull was different — instead of being a single hungry hoard trying to grab my fish and chips, they all looked different and behaved differently. Even the way the wind ruffled their feathers was interesting to draw.

The close attention I gave to silver gulls while drawing made me watch them at other times, flying, gliding or bathing in rock pools. I developed a real affection for them and wrote this poem.

~ ~ ~


wings wave
a silver gull

almost skims the foam
but not quite

then up
on familiar urgent currents

going where?

perfect in her world
of blue and white
and emerald deeps

~ ~ ~

Copyright 2011 Judy Winchester

What creative things do you enjoy?
Leave a comment and share them with us

~ ~ ~


About Jude

I live in Tasmania where I write poetry and walk with my dog.
This entry was posted in Inspiration & Ideas, poetry, Posts with poems, Writers Block, Writing prompts and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Inspired to Write by Drawing Bad Pictures

  1. What’s up i am kavin, its my first time to commenting anywhere, when i read this paragraph i thought i
    could also create comment due to this good paragraph.

  2. I think other arts feed many writers. Lately, I’ve been exploring photography again, and end up writing from that. I’ve posted some of the experiments on my blog.

    I’m glad I found your site. Happy writing!

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