Our guest for this episode is realist artist Callum Stephen, who you may remember from the BBC Big Painting Challenge. Sandra takes the reins today as she interviews Callum while I’m off on holiday in France, which funnily enough is where Callum is now living.
Today's episode is all about idea generation, a topic we love. I have to try and keep Sandra under control otherwise she comes up with bizarre ideas like inflatable knickers (don't ask!).
If you have ever sat with a blank sheet of paper not knowing what to create, then this episode is for you. You really don’t need to wait for that Eureka moment to have an idea. There are lots of different creative techniques you can try.
Some of the creativity techniques we cover:
- Mind mapping - but we put our own twist on this
- How to get ideas out of your everyday life
- How to use a random word to get ideas - we also try this live to show you how it works - yikes (we don't even cheat by picking the random words first! )
- Freewriting - Sandra shares a scary app for this too
- Sandra talks about how you should carry a notebook at all times, but hasn't got one when we need one on the podcast
- Idea mash-up - Its a bit like making a cheese and potato pie, but completely different
- Moodboards and White-Boards
- Poetry and Character Tear-Ups
- Oh my god I am still writing, and there are more creative techniques we shared that I haven't even mentioned...get your coffee ready.
This week we are delighted to have a guest on the show and that's Mike Young, better known as Youngman Brown creator of the popular podcast Your Creative Push. Now Mike has a lot to answer for, in fact, he is the reason that this podcast even exists. He's the one to blame when Sandra and I are warbling on in your ear, as we met via Mike's Creative Push Facebook Group.
Mike originally started his podcast because he was looking for a podcast about pushing yourself to be more creative, but he couldn't find one. Mike is a great writer but he found he wasn't motivating himself to write as much as he wanted to. Originally Mike was putting out one episode of the show a day, which is quite an achievement. Finding guests, interviewing and editing a podcast takes a huge amount of time and Mike was doing all that alongside his job of being a poker dealer. Mike shares how he managed his time and got so much done.
Mike shares some of the creative projects he is working on including Words plus music http://wordsplusmusic.com/ and Creative Push. He also speaks about some of the challenges he's taken part in. One was NaNoWriMo - a writing challenge, but Mike put his own twist on the Challenge. Cramuary was another challenge that Mike invented himself. The idea was that he would "cram"/do as much work on a creative project (his book) during January as he could. However, it didn't work out quite as planned which Mike explains more about in the podcast. Mike offers his tips for anyone else who is considering taking part in a creative challenge.
As a follow up to our episode about dealing with negative feedback, today's episode is about imposter syndrome.
If you haven't heard the term before, it doesn't mean you have to disguise yourself with a pair of googly eyes and fake moustache. Instead, it's that feeling you get that you get when you feel you shouldn't be in the position your in. That you aren't knowledgeable enough even though you have all the expertise and experience that you need to be where you are.
How to spot if you have imposter syndrome
- Feeling inferior amongst others in your field
- A fear of being ‘found out’... or people realising that you’re not really as knowledgeable on the subject as they’d thought
- Lack of self-confidence and self-belief
- Feelings of self-doubt
Our experiences of imposter syndrome
We share our experiences of imposter syndrome. Sandra talks about having Imposter Syndrome when her art was featured on the front cover of a magazine. Tara's art hasn't yet achieved such notoriety but she did once win a hamster cage age, (plus a teddy bear and R2D2 model kit that she forgot to mention in the show ). PS. she was only about 7. Tara has also experienced imposter syndrome on many occasions including the time she worked at a design agency and the most amazing designer worked there too - yikes.
How to overcome imposter syndrome
Hold on to your hats, we got some ideas for you here, hint - that was one of them, but you can hear more in the show.
We give a quick mention to the three challenges we've got happening in June
Replicate a sketch, drawing or painting by a master or from an art book, every day throughout the month. One of the best ways to learn how to draw well is to copy from other artists who are masters of their craft. By replicating their style you will learn a lot.
Cartoon in June
This is a challenge to create a cartoon every single day throughout the month of June. Your cartoon could be a single character, or an entire comic strip! You can use any medium.
For ‘Quick Kick June’ - Create a COLOUR sketch in 10 minutes or less. This challenge is particularly suitable for those who have a tendency to overwork their sketches or those who have limited time.
This week's podcast question
Q. What is your favourite famous painting and why?
The best answers will be read out on the next podcast.
Today we are talking about dealing with negative feedback and we'll be sharing some of our personal experiences. Now, I am sure if you have listened to the show before you're thinking, ...but Sandra and Tara are way too fabulous to have ever had any negative feedback. That was what you were thinking wasn't it?! But it's true we have both had some gut-wrenching experiences - I don't think I need to elaborate anymore other than to say the words "nose whistle" and "the teddy bear got its revenge". It will all make sense when you listen.
Why are you receiving negative criticism?
Often it means you stepping out of your comfort zone and trying something new or stretching yourself, which is actually a great thing. It’s just that people aren’t always that tactful about giving criticism.
Tips for dealing with negative feedback
We need to try and remember that feedback, whether good or bad is only someone's opinion. Sometimes the criticism can help us learn something and improve what we do, other times it's best to ignore it and realise it's more about the other person's insecurities, jealousy or downright tactlessness. We share how our negative feedback affected us at the time and how we might deal with it if the same thing happened now.
Ideas for ways to boost your own confidence
Along with dealing with negative criticism, we also make some suggestions on how to boost your own confidence and make yourself feel better. This does not involve eating copious amounts of chocolate, although we are open to testing if it has beneficial effects.
Our supportive Facebook Group are busy creating
We also give a mention to some of the fantastic members of our Facebook Group who are creating and sharing regular art in the group. You are welcome to join us.
Thank you for all of your answers to our previous question. It was fun reading some of them out,
This weeks question
What would be your dream creative project?
Today we share some tips on how to make your sketchbook more interesting. Plus, as usual, we go on a few tangents and talk about other things that pop into our heads, usually art related, but we can’t completely promise that!
We also mention our April Art Challenges which had just started as we recorded the episode - Abstract Art April, Imitation April and Quick Kick April. Quick Kicks are our monthly challenges that you can complete in 15 minutes or less, so most people can fit them into their day.
Anyway, just like the podcast, I have already managed to divert my attention away from the main topic of sketchbooks. First, we discuss different suggestions for making your sketchbook cover more interesting. Sandra is a big advocate of this, but I prefer to concentrate on the insides. It reminds us both of having to cover exercise books when we were back at school in the dark ages. Does anyone else remember Fablon that sticky plastic stuff or is it a figment of my imagination? Do kids still cover exercise books? Do exercise books even exist anymore or have they been replaced by holograms?......
Read the rest on the show notes
In today's episode we talk about the benefits of having a creative mentor and where you can find them. We are also encompassing the idea of having creative friends or allies. These are the people who help encourage you to create and improve. We also talk a little about our April challenges - Abstract Art April, Imitation April and Quick Kick April.
Hello again and welcome to another podcast episode. Today we are talking about how to find your style and of course there’s a bit of arty chat thrown in for good measure. We also mention some of the fantastic work we have been seeing for our two March Art Challenges March Mixed Media and 5 Minute March. There are a few shoutouts for the work that has really caught our eyes too.
So first of all, just how important is it to find a style?
I guess it totally depends on why you are drawing and painting.
If you are painting purely for fun, then it doesn’t matter in the slightest. You can just paint what you want without considering if people will recognise that it’s your work. You don’t have to try and impress a gallery in this case either.
But, if you want to stand out from the crowd, then, of course, it’s very important to have something about your work that makes it stand out as your own… Your ‘style’.
In today’s episode, we’re discussing whether or not you have to go to art school in order to become an artist. There is no right or wrong path to follow here. We're all different and where some of us will benefit hugely from going to art school, others will only be stunted by it.
Going to art school does not necessarily make someone a good artist! And NOT going to art school doesn’t make someone a bad one either!
Today’s guest is Tracey Fletcher King, an artist, illustrator, printmaker and teacher from Queensland, Australia.
This is an inspiring interview about following your passion, doing what you love and making time for your art, no matter what the obstacles.