13 Ways To Make The Most Of Your Time In Quarantine As A Creative

Updated: May 16

So Coronavirus is happening.


No doubt it's been a hard, crazy, bizarre, weird time for all of us. The whole globe has pretty much shut down and people of the world have been ordered to #stayhome in quarantine, away from friends, colleagues, and loved ones. Self-isolation is leaving many people out of a job, though some still have things on the go. If you're a creative professional, artist, or freelancer - tough times right now, I hear you! But you're not alone, and there are many, many ways (not just the ones listed here) to keep your mind out of a funk and stay on top of your sh*t, safely, productively and creatively.

Granted I, myself, have been totally thrown off and my routines and rhythms are all out of whack. I found it challenging to be productive, complete tasks, or make art and nor did I want to, considering all the bigger issues at play right now.

But you know, following about a week of feeling super 'off', I revisited all the topics we've written about here on the Dark Yellow Dot blog, and I actually felt better! Talk about following your own advice!

So, here is a hopefully helpful (and positive) round up of our top thirteen ways to make the most of your time in quarantine as a creative person.

13 ways to make the most of your time in quarantine

1. Make working from home work for you

Even though we’re all staying at home, we feel we should have all the time in the world to get things done. But all of sudden it’s 8pm and you really haven’t done much at all. You feel like you’ve done lots, but nothing really got accomplished. Has this happened to you yet? Creating a schedule has been a serious life changer for me in the past year. I use Google Calendar, and arrange everything I do or want to do on there. Create (realistic) blocks of time for each task. Plug in your most important things first, and then add the things you’d like to do, and then you’ll see where there are pockets of time that are empty, and fill those with things that keep you creative. If you’d like to know more about how I organise my life on Google Calendar leave a comment or send a DM on Instagram, and I’ll create a post about it.

Check out these posts:

2. Get clear

Keep calm and carry on. With all that’s going on in the world right now, it’s easy for your brain to get a little foggy and when it comes to creating anything, starting points become super unclear. Though there are few things you can do at home to overcome your creative fogginess

Check this out: Tools you already have to burst through creative fog

3. Dive right into making something new

Get started on anything, no matter how small, even if you can’t think of ideas or don’t know where to begin. Take a random tool out of your art mess and just start. Last night, I whipped out my sewing kit and machine, before you know it I made 5 new DIY protective face masks. I can not remember the last time I used my sewing machine, but it was nice to use a different tool for once. Unusual craft project? Yes. Part of my art practice? Definitely not. But it got me excited about making something from scratch, and now I have a bunch of ideas that I could bring into my actual art practice.

Now is a great time to work through some of those ideas you’ve been storing up. Why not turn some of those ideas into a new series of artwork?

Check out these posts:

4. Try on a new artistic style

Perhaps you’ve spent so long committed to a specific artistic style and you’d like to branch out or gain some new skills in a style you’re unfamiliar with. Try exploring a new style or fine tuning the one you have. We love finding #drawthisinyourstyle hashtags on instagram where followers use an existing piece and recreate it in their own style. You can find ours, along with our Quarantine Art Club in our story highlights on Instagram @darkyellowdot!

Check this out: How to find your artistic style

5. Find motivation and inspiration from wherever you are

No doubt this is an absolutely crazy time we’re all facing. But you still have the capacity to be inspired. And inspiration is a fundamental part of what you’ll need to keep creating what you do best. So don’t let this trying time get you down, find small ways to shrink your anxiety, and instead get inspired.

Read these posts:

6. Update or create your artist website

Finally! Some time to devote to building your website. Most people put this off and turn to instagram instead. But did you know that building your own website is literally easier now than ever. With platforms like Wix and Squarespace, your website can be built by draggin’ and droppin’ anything you like and you can be done with it in no time. Beware though, this can be pretty fun and it’s easy to get carried away with unnecessary design elements and features that make your website look messy and unprofessional. I’ve shared my best design tips in the post 6 things no one is telling you about your artist website.

7. Start selling your art online

There may be fewer people buying new wall art during this time, but that doesn’t mean people aren’t buying things since some couriers are still making deliveries. Even if you’re not quite ready to start selling and promoting your art online, you can still do many things to help you prepare for when the time comes. You can take product photos, write descriptions, figure out your return policy, work out your pricing and your taxes, gather testimonials from people who are already familiar with your work, practice your packaging or design your business cards.

Check this out: 12 tips on how to sell your art online

8. Update your cv

While some people are still able to hang on to the job they had pre-quarantine, others are seeking new ways to make some money. There are a lot of companies that have now been forced to reevaluate and downsize their staff and create new smaller teams that can operate from where they are. This doesn’t necessarily mean you won’t be able to get a new job during this time. Perhaps you have a skill that really has nothing to do with your current job, but could serve an alternative company very well. This could be a great time to seek new opportunities that align with your abilities and untapped skills. Time to update your CV!

Check this out: How to write an artist cv when you don’t have much experience

9. Try not to lose your momentum

I’m already guilty of this. This post was meant to be published days ago, but with all that’s been going on, my rhythms are all off track. But hey, we’re all human and this can happen. The worst thing you can do is beat yourself up about it. The important thing is I got back on track, and there’s lots you can do to get back on top of your sh*t too.

Read this post: How to maintain creative momentum

10. Take a course

What about that course you downloaded but never completed? Carve out a few hours of your week to get through some courses to improve or new skills. Wanna learn how to make a living as an artist? How about how to use Pinterest to get more traffic to your art store?

Check this out: Course for Creatives

11. Listen to some new podcasts

Gosh, don’t you love a good podcast? Music who? Best time to dive into some new conversations and listen to some new podcasts while you’re cleaning the house or getting ready for the day. Our readers suggest podcasts all the time. One of our readers recently suggested Art Juice. We’re asking for your suggestions over on Instagram stories too! Tell us, what’s your favourite podcast for creatives?

Read: 5 podcasts every artist should know about

12. Watch more creative films

Instead of binge watching trashy reality shows (I’m also guilty!), why not expand your mind a little on some documentaries or art films? I also love watching beautiful films with amazing cinematography, it’s a sure fire way to get my visual juices flowing. We’ve got a list of some of our fave documentary films. What are your favourite art films or documentaries right now and why?

Read: Our watch list for creative documentaries

13. Read more books

Is someone in your house hogging the TV? You could probably use this time to tackle that reading list you’ve been meaning to start since the new year. We’ve got a list of our favourite books for artists, what books would you suggest we add?

Read: Our reading list for artists

What have you been doing to keep busy during this crazy time? Tell us in the comments.

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