Before I begin, I should probably point out that I originally wrote this article near the end of July (because I usually write these articles fairly far in advance). Anyway, why am I mentioning this?
Well, it’s both to explain the slight dip in the quality of the articles here recently and to talk about the effects that weather can have on writers and artists. I’ll also be talking about how to stay creative during terrible weather too (regardless of which types of weather you consider to be “terrible”)
Yes, this article will start with some moaning about the weather (hey, I’m British – it’s our national pastime). But there’s a point to all of this, sort of.
You see, at the time of writing this article, there’s a heatwave in the UK. Summer is my least favourite season as it is, but this is apparently one of the hottest summers in recent history – probably due to global warming or something like that.
Anyway, I’m not a hot weather person. Seriously, I can barely function in weather like this – hence why I’ve been doing the bare minimum possible on some of this month’s articles.
Fortunately, my art hasn’t suffered as much, although I ended up producing it at a slightly slower rate than usual. Working up the enthusiasm to create things when I’m drenched in sweat is a lot more difficult than when I’m not.
The reason that I mention all of this stuff is because it illustrates one of the ways that weather can have an effect on our creative abilities.
Unless you’ve got good air conditioning and/or heating (if you’re one of those strange people who actually likes hot weather), extremes of weather can have surprisingly unpredictable effects on our creative abilities – or, more accurately, our enthusiasm for creating things.
So, apart from the obvious things (like using a fan or drinking lots of cold water), what can you do to stay creative if the weather is too hot (or too cold)?
Simple – try to scale back as much as possible whilst also remembering why you like creating things at the same time.
By “scale back”, I mean try to create the absolute minumum that you feel that you can do without feeling guilty about it (or running into problems, if you’re working to a deadline).
The important thing during periods of extreme weather is to stay creative and actually make stuff – as such, having much lower expectation can be a way to stay creative without over-exerting yourself. And, if you happen to exceed those expectations occasionally, then this is a bonus.
Another important thing to do is to remind yourself why you create things. Trust me, if you’re in the middle of an enthusiasm-sapping heatwave (or a cold snap), then you’re probably going to need all of the intrinsic motivation that you can find in order to keep creating.
If you’ve been creating things regularly for a while, then you can use this to your advantage when the weather gets bad. Regular creativity has a certain kind of momentum to it which can carry you through unenthusiastic times.
I mean, if you’ve been creating regularly for a while, then it just kind of becomes part of your daily routine and not creating things can end up feeling, well, slightly unnatural. Use this fact to your advantage when the weather is annoying.
But, if you don’t create things regularly, then go for “easy” projects which require less creativity than usual when the weather is being annoying – you know, things like fan art, fan fiction, drawing practice exercises etc…. Remember, the important thing is to keep creating stuff.
Anyway, I hope that this was useful 🙂