Arts + Crafts, Inspiration, Small Business

Creative Plans for the Summer?

June 9, 2008

What will you do this summer to tap into your creativity? Please feel free to share, I think that together we can stimulate one another to action!

Creative Plans for the Summer?

I decided that if I’m going to bring this up as a topic here today, I better show you that I’m going in head first, too. I signed up for a summer painting class this morning so I’ll be dedicating time each week to exploring the arts while tapping into my artistic side. This is exactly what I needed to do for myself. I can always tell when my imagination isn’t running at its usual pace, I think we all can sense when we’re in need of making some adjustments and for me, I need to get dirty and play with paint because creating something, no matter how small, will make me feel energized. My schedule will change drastically in August, as I have a lot going on during the rest of the year, so I want to take advantage of June and July before they slip through my fingers.

Do you plan to take any summer classes or workshops? Attending any lectures? Have you resolved to spend a morning or afternoon each week to doing something creative? How about a few hours one night a week? How will you be more creative this summer?

(photograph: holly becker)

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  • Reply Ellen June 9, 2008 at 6:42 pm

    I just bought my first home, so I have a ton of creative projects planned. The most exciting thing about it is that I have a whole room just for crafts! I have been scouring blogs and magazines for fun, DIY, cheap (since I feel so very, very broke now!) decorating ideas.

  • Reply wendy June 9, 2008 at 7:04 pm

    I usually paint in my free time, but I am taking a ceramics class this summer to mix things up. Its such a refreshing change to my usual routine. you gotta just DO IT!

  • Reply Pam June 9, 2008 at 7:11 pm

    My Husband and I just built an above ground veggie box. We plan to build 2 more and plant them with all the fruits and veggies we eat regularly.

    I also plan to take some drawing workshops.

  • Reply LINDSAY June 9, 2008 at 7:13 pm

    After 4 years of working(painting) from the dining room table, I have leased a studio for the next three months. My kids will also have a sitter 2 days a week for the first time in their lives. It’s a risk for our family, and it’s one of the scariest and most exciting things I’ve ever done for my little business. I’m committing myself to a summer of creating and giving it my all to make it work…fingers crossed!

  • Reply decor8 June 9, 2008 at 7:20 pm

    Lindsay can I just say that your risk will totally pay off? I know your work, it is stunning. You have exactly what it takes to advance things to the next level. I am so excited about your art studio. Please feel free to send along photos of it and the work that you do there, I would be honored to show everyone here on decor8 as I think it is really inspiring.

    Pam, love the veggie garden idea.

    Wendy, Yup. JUST DO IT. Nike didn’t make this their tagline for nothing!

    Ellen, a whole room for crafting is wonderful — you will love it.

  • Reply nancy June 9, 2008 at 7:21 pm

    I signed up for a series of flower arranging classes.
    I love fresh flowers but feel a bit intimidated, and want to learn more!
    I just bought a new apartment too ( know the feeling, ellen! ), and have so much to do, but feeling the pinch.
    I’m afraid I’m not very crafty, though, but I am reading a lot of books, and getting great tips from blogs like this one!
    thank you all!

  • Reply Sarah June 9, 2008 at 7:30 pm

    This is a good idea…I’ll have to find something to do since my creative juices have all but dried up.

  • Reply Sarah June 9, 2008 at 7:36 pm

    My husband & I also just bought our first home! I am going to devote a few nights a week to sewing ( I also have the luxury of a whole room dedicated to crafts/sewing!). I want to create artwork for the living room walls.

  • Reply Samantha June 9, 2008 at 7:37 pm

    oh there is so much to do. I start my summer job hours so I’ll have a bit more time. I want to create a new portfolio with the NY TImes in mind. I’ve always wanted to illustrate for them. So I want to compile some more conceptual work and submit it. I also want to make patterns for apparel. I just showed lots of patterns at Surtex and they were illustrative and busy. So I’d like to try some more silhouetted, or floral patterns that are still interesting and unique to my style. I also want to start a new section in my blog where I pick photographs I love from some of the street style blogs from around the world and draw from them. So, that’s my initial summer plans. Plus, I really want to get submission packages together to show my existing work to companies I want to work for…..ok, I’m a little daunted by it all but that’s the plan.

  • Reply Erin Lang Norris June 9, 2008 at 7:52 pm

    I’m taking a printmaking class that starts on Wednesday night. I can’t wait to meet new people on the same wavelength as me (for once!).

  • Reply diana @ please sir June 9, 2008 at 7:57 pm

    Great topic. My summer plans? Finding a new job with more creative work. I’m also trying to branch out and get back my work focus. It’s hard having a 8-5 job and then trying to re-charge for your personal work. Crossing fingers!

  • Reply Kiba June 9, 2008 at 8:47 pm

    I’m producing, directing, and acting in a play! I’m also moving and will spend a lot of time decorating the new house.

  • Reply Jules June 9, 2008 at 9:10 pm

    I am actually doing the opposite of most people here: I am NOT taking any more jobs for the summer, and instead using the three month break to play with my boys, ages 15 months and (just turned!) 4 years old.

    We’re going to build castles, and ride trains, and color, and cook yummy things for family and friends. :)

  • Reply sweetcheese June 9, 2008 at 9:22 pm

    I am going to reach outside my comfort zone and take a Hip Hop dance class! (Enough dancing along to So You Think You Can Dance in my living room.) And like Diana I’m also working toward a more creative day job–one with books. :)
    And congratulations to Kiba on the play, and Jules on the kid-time. I’m jealous AND inspired.

  • Reply Tracey June 9, 2008 at 9:42 pm

    I am going to set up a craft/artwork room in our vacation home- I do not have as much “stuff” there, so I can totally divulge in the space provided. I cannot wait to have the new space. July is my vacation month and my creative resolve time! I am thinking I may need an etsy store…

  • Reply Lauren June 9, 2008 at 9:44 pm

    Wow, Lindsay’s story is a little like mine. I am painting in the bedroom though, or anywhere there are no children sleeping. My husband is a school teacher, so during his summer break he will be “mommy” while I paint full time. We are hoping that any earnings this summer will fund a move to a home with a studio. Eventually my husband may quit his job altogether to allow me to pursue fine art.

    I agree with Lindsay. It is scary. We have 3 children under 4 years old, so thats a lot a mouths to feed. The good thing is, all those kids will be great models for my artwork and illustrations.

  • Reply quaint handmade June 9, 2008 at 9:45 pm

    i’m going to work on improving my photography, which is something i’ve recently discovered that i really love to do. it’s so exciting as i have all kinds of projects planned for myself, i.e. color studies, still lifes, etc.

    i’m also realizing that it’s really important to be able to get excited about learning something new, a lot.

    it’s fun to read what everyone else has planned for the summer. i think i might add some things to my list.

  • Reply Camilla June 9, 2008 at 9:55 pm

    I’m going to be setting up my very own ‘summer school’ (which will soon find it’s home here:

    Having a whole summer with no classes to attend has filled me with fear and paralysis, so along with a few friends I am going to be setting projects and deadlines to keep us motivated over the next few months.

    Anyone’s welcome to join in- i’ll be posting more details soon as possible, your blog post just came at the right time for me to respond, but a little too early to have anything to show for it!

  • Reply Anonymous June 9, 2008 at 10:13 pm

    I planned on going to NeoCon World’s Trade Fair 2008 this summer but it’s already going on right now. I found a website that has some info on what’s going on at NeoCon now that seems pretty useful:

    NeoCon World’s Trade Fair 2008

  • Reply margarita June 9, 2008 at 10:13 pm

    I’m taking a flash class, for growth as a graphic designer. It actually already started and although a bit too techy for me, I’m doing ok so far.

    I’ll also be working on my new blog that I started a week and a half ago called The D in Decor, it’s all about home decor and design in Detroit.

  • Reply ChrysRT June 9, 2008 at 10:37 pm

    When we moved to Australia, my partner saw how lonely I was and helped me to organize a little studio in one corner of the house. Everytime I find the time to go and create a little something I feel some much energy. This winter (your summer) I am planning on taking a silk printing class at Prints Charming Studio that I got to know through your blog.
    I really encourage you to develop your creative gifts.

  • Reply Jamie Watson June 9, 2008 at 11:29 pm

    Oh my gosh, I love reading everyone’s plans! What a great post! I might want to do a hip-hop class too – see I’m already inspired. My personal goal though, is to go to my studio twice a week and make things to put in my first Etsy shop by the end of June, and then by the end of August, to submit prints to galleries that have surf-themed shows!

  • Reply Victoria E June 10, 2008 at 12:05 am

    I’ll be buying hemp fabric and using the inspiration in Lotta Jansdotter’s Lotta Prints book to custom-print the fabric with either stencil or rubber stamps. The fabric will then be used to create Roman shades for my apartment :D

  • Reply Sew Bettie June 10, 2008 at 12:31 am

    I have 2 big plans for the summer.

    I started a new blog full of all of my favorite crafty business resources, tips, etc. I just wrote my first really long post – about how I contact shops that might want to feature my products.

    Also, I am crazy about my new gocco. Learning to use it on fabric is a high priority for me!

  • Reply Sara Czukal June 10, 2008 at 5:32 am

    In addition to maintaining my etsy store and blog I’ll be working on a series of DIY, budget friendly projects for my new apartment.

  • Reply stacy June 10, 2008 at 5:36 am

    I love reading all the activity going on this summer! Adding to my ongoing task of organizing, little sewing projects, etc. I am indulging in a photography class starting tomorrow!! I have rediscovered a passion for film. I feel like I have a good eye, but now am looking forward to refining w/the help of a professional. Who knows, maybe this will propel me in a different direction professionally as I near the end of my sabbatical! I agree w/quaint handmade that it’s important to get excited about learning/doing something new! And this post is a great way to keep it going. Thanks!

  • Reply SimplyGrove June 10, 2008 at 7:45 am

    I’m personally not taking any classes but my kids are taking a variety of classes! Tumbling, swimming, t-ball. Lots of fun stuff. My goal for the summer is to simply work harder on my exterior. I want to pot more and garden more!

  • Reply Kate June 10, 2008 at 2:22 pm

    I’m taking a screen printing on fabric class. I’m so so excited to print some of my designs on fabric.

    Thanks for the inspiring post about indie surface designers it was wonderful.

  • Reply Erica June 10, 2008 at 2:29 pm

    I’m a graphic artist who’s tired of the computer! I’m buying a Gocco and plan to design some cards and other items. I’m considering a sewing class as well.

  • Reply yelloworanges June 10, 2008 at 4:39 pm

    I just took a beginners sewing class where I made an awesome skirt with Amy Butler fabric. And later in the summer there’s a printmaking class I have on my calendar. I have dreams of leaving the corporate world as an Art Director and using my graphic design skills to create beautiful letterpress items.


  • Reply annie/curbsidetreasure June 10, 2008 at 5:00 pm

    i got a commission to do a collage piece in an exhibit for a nonprofit called writerscorps, for their 15 year anniversary. so im going to work on it a lot during the summer.

  • Reply geramyum June 10, 2008 at 7:15 pm

    As an artist, I think taking classes, no matter your skill level is so important. Sure you’ll learn to paint, but more importantly you learn to SEE!

  • Reply hina rana June 10, 2008 at 7:37 pm

    i’ve just got a summer job as a designer with an NGO…so i’m looking forward to create stuff, and help some kids in raising their college fee …and i am looking forward to weave some stuff i’ve planned..some rugs and cushions…and making icecream..

  • Reply hampton June 10, 2008 at 9:40 pm

    i’m late to the party…. but i signed up for my first drawing class this summer. and hopefully i can take some sewing workshops too. i’m hoping to squeeze in as many of the “oh, i have ALWAYS wanted to do that!” type of things as i can this summer, because i start cosmetology school in the fall and then my schedule will be jam-packed!

  • Reply Marisa and Creative Thursday June 11, 2008 at 12:58 am

    I’m going to keep exploring the world of sewing :) And I’m so excited to hear that you are taking a painting a class ~ I truly hope you might share some of your creations with us. I’m sure they will be beautiful, as is this photograph by the way.

  • Reply shanon June 11, 2008 at 2:44 am

    What a great read! It’s been fun checking out what everyone will be up to! I hope to get more gardening and landscaping done this summer. Last year, when we bought our house, we spent most of our time working on the inside. I’m looking forward to all the flowers, etc. that I’ll have to photograph in the coming years if I get my garden done. I also hope to take more time away from photography (which will be hard!) to get back to watercolor painting. I’ve been meaning to paint a series of seashells for the longest time, and what better time than summer for that? =) Thanks for reminding me to get a jumpstart on all this, Holly, summer goes way to fast! (Oh! And your bee shot is fantastic!)

  • Reply Natalie June 11, 2008 at 9:32 pm

    I’m going to refinish (or maybe just sand & paint) a dresser we’ve had for a while now, handed down from my father in law, who got it for free from the hotel he works at. It’s in pretty good condition, but the paint and hardware don’t really work for my style. So I’m finally going to do a furniture project – very exciting!

  • Reply Frida June 12, 2008 at 8:51 pm

    Im planning a few weeks of blogging in july, to boost some creativity :-) During july I will only write down my ideas on paper, not in the computer. Im excited to see if it maes any difference.

  • Reply Simone Walsh June 18, 2008 at 6:44 am

    Summer is still almost six months away for me and as an indie designer, it coincides with the busiest time of the year in terms of sales, meaning it’s the time of year I need to focus on making lots of production work and filling orders. Of course after Christmas there’s more of summer left, but I’m invariably so worn out at that point that I spend the rest of it trying to catch up and catch my breath!

    So to me autumn and winter is more the time to be creative and explore new ideas and projects – it’s interesting to see the reverse is true elsewhere!

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