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Keep Two Lists for Your Creative Projects

If you want to be a productive, prolific creative person, you need to get organized and stay organized. Your organizational scheme may not look like anybody else’s: to the outside world, your studio may look completely disorganized. But if you know where things are,...

You Aren’t Creative Until You Pick a Project

You Aren’t Creative Until You Pick a Project I’ve been working with creative and performing artists and other creatives for more than thirty years, first as a therapist and then as a creativity coach. Among their many challenges is the following one, a challenge that...

The Astonished Apple

At the core of a creative act like painting or sculpting is the effort to make meaning (and not beautiful objects or money). We are very happy if we make objects we like and if we make money, but what we are really after as we create is the experience of making our...

What If You’ve Lost Your Confidence?

Dear Dr. Maisel: I’m wondering how important confidence really is to an artist—and if it is really important, what can you do if you’ve lost some of it—or a lot of it! Rachel L., Portland ** Thanks, Rachel. Yes, creativity requires confidence—and life can rob you of...

Finding Your Artistic Voice

Dear Dr. Maisel: I’ve been painting for a long time but I have the feeling that I still haven’t found my own voice as an artist. Do you have any suggestions for how an artist can go about discovering what she really wants to say? Leslie T., Flagstaff ** Thank you,...

How to Expand Your Repertoire

Dear Dr. Maisel: I have a certain style and I’m pretty comfortable doing what I currently do. But I also have the itch to stretch and try some new things. Do you have any suggestions for how I might expand my repertoire? Lionel F., Detroit ** Thanks, Lionel. There may...

Your Creativity Practice

YOUR CREATIVITY PRACTICE 1. What is a practice? It is a way that you take your existence seriously, one breath at a time, one thought at a time, one moment at a time. It is the daily routine of paying attention where you have intentions. It looks like the silence of...

Kill Maybe

Dear Dr. Maisel: I spend a lot of my day thinking about painting rather than actually painting. Probably you have a lot of things to suggest but what would your number one tip be to help me get more painting done? Frank W., Taos, New Mexico * Thanks, Frank. My number...

The Anxiety of Deadlines

Dear Dr. Maisel: I have a deadline coming up where I’m supposed to deliver some paintings for a show and the deadline is making me really anxious! Any suggestions? Harriet R., Spokane * Thanks, Harriet! Let’s look at this issue closely because it’s very important....

The Confident Artist, Part 3

It’s often the case that we’re reasonably confident somewhere inside of us—we have some real confidence to access—but when it comes to accessing it for some specific reason, liking getting on with our painting or contacting a particular gallery, we can’t seem to...

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