Tag Archives: Limits

How Limits Inspire Creativity

How Limits Inspire Creativity

Necessity is the mother of invention.

~English proverb

Every artist has all the tools he needs at his disposal.

Oh, if only that were true.

No matter what your medium is, you need physical supplies: a drafting table, paper, canvas, needles and thread, ink, music stands, computer programs . . .

And beyond the tangible implements, you also need the intangible: education, life experience, time, a spark of inspiration . . .

But in a way, having every possible requirement for your art could also be a hindrance. Too many options can make it hard to focus. Which shiny idea do you work on? Oils or acrylics? Fiction or poetry? Modern dance or ballet? Butterflies or toads? Having every advantage can be a curse.

Don’t you admire the people you know who are able to do remarkable things with very simple materials? Your friends who can make an impromptu dinner out of the odds and ends in their pantry. The guy who finds an old broken dresser next to the road on garbage day and turns it into a glamorous bathroom vanity. The child who delights the neighbors by painting whimsical designs on rocks and hiding them in their yards.

Brilliant ideas

The challenge of making something out of what you have at hand can unlock your creativitity.

Here is what some people have made with found objects:

Read an interesting article on the power of limitations.

I challenge you to make or write something with the resources you have on hand today. Don’t wait until you get that expensive tool or that elusive inspiration. You have enough. You are enough.