I have to admit, it’s been a long time since I last sat down and allowed myself to create just for fun. Something about creating without a purpose has always felt wasteful and not allowed in my mind. I could flex my creative muscles if it were for a blog post or to go with a letter I was mailing to a friend, but to create for just the sake of creating? Well, that mostly hasn’t been the case for me since high school. (And believe me kids, that was a long, long time ago.)
The only exception has always been during my depressive episodes in which I turned towards creating to escape the thoughts of my racing brain. I find it’s one of the few things in life that absorbs me fully and brings me a sense of peace (which actually seems a bit counter-intuitive as a perfectionist who can always find something to hate in everything I do).
With my last fall into that dark world, I finally realized that maybe my creating doesn’t have to be limited to bad times. If it helps me when I’m feeling down, surely it can make me feel even better when I’m feeling up. And so, over the last few months, I have created regularly again, without a reason, and it honestly feels great.
Below you will find the doodles of November and December in which I started allowing myself to create again for fun. I’d say my main purpose those first few months, apart from just allowing myself to create, was to start searching for a style. Using photographs of models from Vogue magazines to reference for my drawings (credited as available below), I focused more on determining what I liked/didn’t like when illustrating women than creating something original.
So, if you’re interested, please join me in checking out my first attempts at creating for fun again. And, if you’ve been like me and were resisting the desire to create just for fun because it felt purposeless – stop. This is the time to create for fun. You won’t always have it, so embrace it now while you can. You may be surprised just how much you enjoy it.
Let me know what you think! Do you ever struggle to allow yourself to create just for fun? What’s holding you back? If you’re looking for permission, here it is! The time to create just for fun is now.