Mental Block

Have you ever had a creative mental block? Has that ever happened to you? How do you handle it?

What happens when you run into an obstacle? Do you push through, forcing your creativity to keep producing, or do you take a break? How do you feel about the final result?

That was the position I was in yesterday. I had found a sketch I really liked, but as I got to working on my own version of it, I discovered that one particular portion of it kept eluding me. As I kept working, it became a giant mountain that I couldn’t work past or even see around. Eventually, it began to affect every aspect of my unfinished layout. I didn’t like the placements of potential embellishments- I began to even question the embellishments I had chosen to work with. They didn’t appeal to me anymore- only because the blank, empty space that kept staring me in the face wasn’t playing nice with me. And, its so easy to become discouraged and frustrated when your project isn’t going your way. Does anyone agree?

So, I guess the question becomes why did that space bother me so much? There is a reason that blank space become so blinding- and now that I think about it, the why affected it as much as the what. The sketch that I chose to work with added a lot of weight (purposely) to one side of the page. I didn’t want to add too much more to that side of the page without being able to add enough embellishments and other appeal to the opposite side. My goal was to keep my project balanced. In my mind, balance equals perfection. Perfection means I’m in love with and incredibly proud of my layout. Why? Because its aesthetically pleasing to my eye. And, we all want to make something that looks pretty, right?! If it isn’t pretty, then I’ve failed. Failure isn’t an option!

So, I quit working on that project yesterday. Actually, my husband unknowingly helped me come to that conclusion. In the midst of moving items around, not wanting to commit to anything (such as adhering things to the page knowing full well I wasn’t happy with it), he phoned and asked me if I was busy. “Nope”! I blurted, then he told me to get ready. We putzed around town for a bit yesterday afternoon, and it was just the break I needed. In fact, I took the rest of the day off from working on that layout. I wouldn’t look at it, and wouldn’t think about it. (But, anyone that knows how a scrapbookers mind works knows that they never truly stop thinking about projects). I did stop thinking about it- for a bit- but after I laid down in bed last night, an idea struck me. I finally had some direction, and couldn’t wait to try it out when I woke up in the morning.

(Typically, scrapbooking doesn’t come before chores and other household duties, but since we’re experiencing an incredible heatwave, the only MUST on today’s agenda is to stay cool!) That means chilling in the basement, in my conveniently located haven (insert grin here). Its a match made in heaven. Thank goodness the kids are away for the next week and a half!

I used my Cricut to cut some pine trees from the same colour card stock that the photo mat (perpetrator in question) is. I wanted to add something that wouldn’t add too much to the weight already on that particular side of the layout. And actually, I’m quite happy with the finished product! Those trees are exactly what that space needed! The pine trees add to the story- camping at a beautiful Guest Ranch in the mountains- and they serve as the perfect solution to my quandary. After that was settled, embellishing the rest of the page was a breeze!



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