The creative block is a condition characterized by the inability to unlock one's creative potential. It usually leads to a plateau where the artist is struggling to generate new ideas or finish the already started projects.
Regardless of whether you've been experiencing writer's block for a while now or you're simply seeking new methods to enhance your creative techniques — we’ve got you covered. To remind you that creativity isn't about one-off moments of brilliance, we've put together a special recipe that combines tried-and-true ideas from musicians and industry professionals with some bits of our personal experience.
1. TAKE BREAKS.
It may be counterproductive to force oneself to complete projects without taking a break. Professionals suggest taking 20 to 30 minutes off regularly — enjoying a walk or just about anything you like doing. It is also useful for resetting your senses so that when you return to work, it will be easier to spot things you need to develop or add something extra.
2. EXPERIMENT WITH SOUNDS.
A great way to escape from Creative Block Village is to make sounds without worrying if or how they will fit into a track. Fire up your dusty synth and have a solo jam session. Let go of all constraints and follow the free flow. Unleash your creative beast, just don’t forget to save the presets on your synth or export the stems directly for your future projects. Furthermore, you should make use of that recorder of yours. Embark on an excursion, and capture a wide variety of different sounds for multiple potential uses. Honestly, one of the best ways to spend your Sundays.
3. EXPLORE OBSCURE SAMPLES.
The first step is to go sample-hunting. It is best to arrange your discoveries in a sample library that you will grow over time. Once you've imported some samples into your DAW, the exploration begins. Play around, experiment with different settings, go amok and see what happens. Pitch shifting or time stretching - you name it! Mangle, layer, and manipulate the samples to come up with something completely unique. The sky is the limit.
4. TRY OUT UNUSED PLUGINS.
Get lost, take a detour, and experiment with plugins you've never used before (we know you have plenty!). The ideas that will jump to your mind, as a result, will amaze you and kickstart your motivation. A muse often hides in the quirkiest corners of the artist's mind and comes when least expected.
5. CHANGE YOUR WORKFLOW.
One of the primary causes of stagnation in the music industry is our natural predisposition to create songs in the same manner, by following an already established workflow over and over again. This will, at some point, inevitably lead you straight into the depths of the creative block, despite how talented
or hardworking you are. By chronologically rearranging the order of your production routine, you will not only liven things up but also open yourself up to focus on something that you might have been missing until now.
One of the coolest aspects of music production is that it can be done in a team. Working with fellow artists allows you to bounce creative ideas and suggestions off each other without the fear of judgment. Thus, you also gain insight into their work process, leading to a reevaluation of your own approach. Nonetheless, it undoubtedly is a fun exercise.
7. LISTEN TO DIFFERENT GENRES.
If you feel like you are creating the same thing over and over, you need new ideas to spark some inspiration. The smartest strategy is also the simplest: draw ideas from other musical genres. You will subconsciously add new elements to your music by exposing yourself to a wider variety of styles. “Being faithful” to just one genre is one of the biggest acts of self-sabotage for an artist.