How to Find Inspiration as a Creative


All of my favorite photographs that I created as an angsty teen were inspired by experiences I was having. Whether that was my first heartbreak, struggling with anxiety and not really knowing it at the time, or something as simple as finding a new album I was in love with. Your experiences don't have to be world shattering - they just have to be yours. A few places to source inspiration from would be things that have affected you in the last few months.

  • A new friend/relationship
  • Moving living situations
  • Starting a new job
  • A family member passing
  • Getting a new pet

This list could truly go on and on. The basic idea is to source from your life experiences and go from there. Sit and stew about how you're feeling in regards to these life changes and see where it takes you.


Here's another little nifty list of ideas to get you started from sources that are outside of you.

  • A new book that speaks to you
  • A quote you found
  • World events
  • Lyrics from your favorite song
How to find inspiration for creatives helpful blog post

If you're feeling a little adventurous for outside sources, one of my favorite resources is oblique strategies. It's a website that gives you vague starting points to find inspiration from and not to mention - it's just fun to see what you get as a strategy.

One thing to remember; there are endless sources to find inspiration from, just keep your eyes open and listen to how you're feeling. Follow the pull towards what interests you even if it doesn't turn out how you want - you don't have to share everything you make. :)


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Katharine Hannah

Katharine’s work has graced the walls of institutions such as The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, The Harold Washington Library of Chicago, and local galleries such as Dreambox Gallery, Siragus Gallery and Blick Art Materials. She has also been featured on websites such as the Huffington Post, Phlearn, Fstoppers, Tigress Magazine for Girls, Bitchtopia, and Golden Boy Press.

In addition to photography, Katharine has been a mentor and educator in the arts since 2013. She has worked with students in various organizations and projects over the last two years, including Hive Chicago’s PROjectUS initiative and Digital Youth Network’s Digital Diva’s and Chicago City of Learning programs.