Refilling The Well

Refilling The Well
So, you've finally finished that big project. Your brain hurts and you're physically exhausted. Now what?

Refilling the [creative] well is a term I learned from Todd Henry of The Accidental Creative. I’ve learned to take it’s meaning to heart.

When you dedicate so much time and so much of your creative energy to develop a project, more often than not you feel drained. Your body, mind and soul can be exhausted. What if you need to move on to the next project in a matter of days, hours or just a few minutes? It can be excruciating. You turn on that tap of creative mojo and all that’s left is a few lonely drops. What if you have a deadline?

We all have our ways of relaxing. Those small things that help us relieve the stress of daily life. What do you do when you need that steroidal dose and fast? How can you quiet your mind, relax, release and refill that well?

Walk away.

Get up from your desk, your easel, put the mouse, the camera, the pen down and walk. Breathe.

Find a quiet place outside under a tree, inside in a comfy chair. Go to a gallery or museum. Yoga? Go see a movie or watch one on your laptop in the coffee shop down the street. The main point is to change your scenery. Go somewhere new and people watch. Hop the city bus and ride the circuit while reading a book or magazine. Have a whole day? Plan a creative date with yourself.

You can find inspiration anywhere and usually in the unlikeliest of places. The key is to be open to it. Relax. Release. Refill. Let the world around you pour in. You are an experienced, knowledgeable, competent creative. You have greatness within.

Now breathe deep and get to work.

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Kim Spencer is a designer, artist and college professor. She currently serves as vice president on the board of AIGA Richmond and previously served as chapter president and new media coordinator. Kim is the founder and resident creative of Protozoa Design. Kim's background originates in fine arts earning a BFA in Crafts from Virginia Commonwealth University in 1997. In 1999, she returned and earned a second BFA in Communication Design. In addition, Kim holds a Master of Liberal Arts degree in Film Studies from the University of Richmond. Kim spent the last seven years with an in-house team in higher education but as the work became more repetitious and considerably less creative she decided to strike out on her own. With over a year in planning, Protozoa Design opened its doors in January 2011. The creativity has over flowed into identity, print collateral and exhibition design. Now coming full circle, she’s found her way back to furniture design. Kim also teaches in the respective graphic design departments at Virginia State University and Virginia Commonwealth University. She resides in The Fan with her husband, son, four cats and extensive Star Wars Lego collection.

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