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Creative Confidence in Art

Creative confidence when making art is the understanding that you have valid artistic ideas and have the confidence to act on them. It doesn't mean that everything you create will be wonderful, it's more about improving and developing your skills with the intention of creating art at some point.

For me as a tutor, it's about giving the tools and skills needed for people to create something unique to them, that gives them a voice and says something about them as a person. It's not about creating a replica of a piece I have made - after all who needs hundreds of the same artwork in the world!

I certainly don't think that the above image is especially amazing or even that artistic, however it was a way of trying out methods to convert images I found inspiring from a 2-D image to one with relief and to explore new ways of blending colour. Whilst I never created artwork in this exact style I went on to develop my knowledge in this area and now use many of these methods to colour fabrics and manipulate them.

Why is Creative Confidence Important?

Creativity and being confident to listen to your own ideas is important as you're also expressing yourself and what it means to do this. Self-expression leads to self-confidence and the ability to be your true self. It shows others that you value yourself, leading them to value you too. This is true in any life situation, not just a creative one.

How can you develop creative confidence?

Experiment and play - not everything has to become an artistic masterpiece. Creative confidence doesn't come from having a completed piece of artwork or mastering a technique, it comes from curiosity and being engaged with what you are doing.

Start small - having a large area of paper or other material to fill can feel daunting. Start with a small area and get larger from there.

Don't compare your work to others - this is so important. We are all unique and this should be celebrated. When you, often unfairly, compare your work to someone else's you aren't allowing your own achievements to be noticed. We never truly know another's situation - it may be the person you are comparing yourself to has spent 8 hours a day for a year creating their work and you only have 2 hours a week. They may have being creating for several years and you only for a matter of weeks.

Take part in a workshop or creative group - one that allows your creativity to bloom, that will guide you to make your own work and develop the skills that you would like to. Being in a room with other creative people and making connections with them is often very inspiring.

A large part of my practice is teaching and facilitating workshops for many different people in many different areas, covering a range of techniques and outcomes. However, they all have one thing in common and that is they're all designed to build the creative confidence of participants. Creating a safe environment that encourages risk taking and creative exploration alongside sharing any skills that are needed. Each participant creates art that is uniquely theirs along the chosen theme. One of the things I love about teaching art is that each participant begins with the same introduction, the same materials available to them, yet they all create something so different.

As well as teaching in person workshops, I have a range of hand embroidery kits and instant workshops all designed to develop creative confidence anytime, anywhere. I'd love to hear your thoughts on being creative and how important it is to you.

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