Drawing a Blank – Tips to Help You Get Inspired

It happens to all of us, our mind just goes blank, you’ve hit a block. It happens when writing stories, essays, even blog posts. It happens when creating, or before the creative process can begin. When your drawing a blank, what you need is some inspiration to get the gears to start turning and the creative juices flowing.

What is the Block I’ve hit?

A “Block” is when you’ve become unable to access your once flowing stream of inspiration, whether for writing, drawing, music, or other things. This would happen to me in school a lot, for pieces of art and even essays for other topics. When writing a history paper I would never know where or how to start it, but once you figure that out it all just starts to flow and come together into a great piece. There can be many causes for a mental block. From just a depletion of creative energy, perhaps after an intense project, to personal or emotional issues that arise in your life. Just remember that it is temporary, and thought it feels like an eternity, your blank mind will be filled with ideas soon, perhaps with just a little inspiration.

mental block

How To Get Inspired

Everyone is inspired in different ways, by different things. You’ll have to experiment to see what works best for you, or maybe branch out and try something new to get inspired. Here are some different ways of finding inspiration:

  • Go Out – Staring at whatever it is your trying to create is not going to inspire you, probably just cause frustration from your blank mind. Go outside and walk around, you can see, hear and smell many different things. These experiences engage the senses, gets you thinking, and inspires your mind.
  • Do Something Unrelated – Again, staring at it is doing you no good. Leave your workroom/studio/computer and do something else. Go into your kitchen and bake something, plant some herbs or flowers, read a book or go to the book store and browse. If all you do is think and focus on writing or painting, your going to burn out and start drawing a blank.
  • Explore Online – You can find anything and everything on the Internet. You can just browse pictures and articles as you find them, or start researching a topic that interests you, or research something related to a piece. Once in college I had to create an original logo for a tea company. Well, I had no idea where to start, and with so many different tea companies out there an original design was proving difficult. So, I started researching tea. What is tea, how is tea made, everything and anything about tea, and it inspired a great design.
  • Listen to Music – Listen to your favorite CD, artists, or play list. Relax your mind and just listen to the music, don’t even think about that project waiting for you. Inspiration could come from a melody, a lyric or even just the beat of a song.
  • Jot Down Random Things – Just start writing or doodling whatever. Random phrases come to mind, write them down. Go back and look at them, is there anything you can build on? Have an itch to draw but feel uninspired, just start doodling, start creating lines and shapes and see where it goes. You could very well just be over thinking the project your working on, causing a block. Do something simple and basic and see if you can get those creative juices to start flowing again.


I hope that these how to get inspired tips help you with finding inspiration for your projects. Heck, I even used some of these tips myself to inspire this blog post. I’d love to know what you do to get inspired or work through a block.

Here are some other pages on finding inspiration and creative blocks:

9 tips to be more creative@pikaland writes about inspiring creativity.

How to Overcome Artist Creative Block and Get Inspired – A post on the @artpromotivate website with tips to help get inspired.

10 Tips to Avoid a Creative Block – A post on the @inspiredmag website with some tips to inspire you and avoid hitting a creative block

Top artists reveal how to find creative inspiration – Artists from a variety of different careers discuss how they get inspired.

How to Get Creatively Inspired – a post by Jacob Gube on the @designinstruct website that gives some more tips for finding inspiration.

Where to find creative inspiration? – A post with some interesting and creative tips to help get your creative juices flowing, from @inkbotdesign