Sometimes, the best way to get out of a creative rut is not by seeking inspiration externally, but asking ourselves the right questions. Denisse Ariana Pérez shares four prompts creators can use to spark new inspiration.
Words and Photography by Denisse Ariana Pérez
We’ve all been in a creative rut at some point or another. Being (momentarily) stuck is as natural as creatively flowing. Creative blocks might have been fortified by a stagnating, never-seeming-to-end global pandemic, but they existed well before 2020. I don’t really believe there’s a one-fit-all cure to creative blocks, but there are definitely tips and questions that can reopen our minds again after they have been shut and “out of service.”
I met with process designer and creative facilitator, Alejandro Masferrer, to discuss what could be good mind-opening questions to reignite photographers, artists, creatives, amateurs, in those periods when they might feel that every idea has already been thought of, or that they have reached a plateau.
Here are four questions/thought-starters, plus a promise, to get you to consider different perspectives when looking for new stories to tell and capture.
1. By saying Yes to certain themes or topics you are simultaneously saying No to others. What are you saying No to?
2. What would be a subject you would be afraid to explore? What would be those fears?
3. What is something you keep on observing or are captivated by but have never considered turning into a project?
4. Think of where, think of places. What place didn’t inspire you in the past? What places have inspired you? Revisit them and find different ways to look at them. It could be a nostalgic place, an ordinary unmemorable place, it could be a wasteland or a breathtaking landscape.
Lastly, make this promise to yourself:
When creating something new,
I will say No to what I am typically drawn to and
I will say Yes to what I would normally say No to.
Denisse Ariana Pérez
Denisse Ariana Pérez is a Caribbean-born, Copenhagen-based copywriter and photographer. She is obsessed with words, people and imagery and finding ways to make them speak to one another. Her photographic work has been featured on It’s Nice That, The Guardian, VICE, Dazed and Ignant, and she is now an Urth ambassador.