Tagged With inspiration

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As Austin Kleon, the author of Steal Like an Artist, writes on his blog, for artists or those looking for inspiration generally, you can’t always rely on your own family, friends or upbringing to give you the tools you need. Instead, you “must establish your own artistic genealogy”.

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Like any habit, journaling is easier said than done. I tried for years (all of the half-empty notebooks in my childhood bedroom can attest to this) and didn't form a sustaining habit until I studied abroad in university and wrote in a travel journal daily. Something just clicked during that time, and I kept it up when I was back home, where it morphed from a catalogue of the places I visited and food I ate into a place to work through feelings, expand on questions or random observations, and set goals for myself.

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"A good composer does not imitate; he steals," Igor Stravinsky supposedly said. Faulkner allegedly phrased it as "Immature artists copy, great artists steal." Steve Jobs put it most simply: "Good artists copy, great artists steal." The saying regularly inspires artists, thinkers and dorm-room poster designers. But in practical terms, what does it mean?

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If you are a fan of The Great British Bake Off, you have most likely noticed an all-encompassing sense of calm that pervades the program and soothes the viewer. Unlike other cooking shows, the contestants aren't "here to win", they're here to bake, and maybe even make friends.

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Marvin Gaye might have been best known for albums like I Heard It Through the Grapevine and What's Going On, but when you look closer, you see an artist who struggled with depression yet somehow found a way through that to release some of the greatest soul music to come out of Motown.

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Not every game is about winning. Amidst the rise in tabletop gaming, dozens of storytelling games have emerged that challenge you or your teammates to create entertaining stories instead of beating each other. If you want to hone your skills as a creative writer, these are an excellent way to start.

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Boredom, daydreaming and idle time are all important for creativity and motivation, as well as your mental health. This video reinforces the idea, pointing out that while none of us will ever be lauded for staring out of the window, it's exactly what more of us need to do to stay happy, healthy and inspired.