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  1. #1
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    Unhappy What do you do when you're feeling hopeless?

    I've been having a lot of problems with my mood/emotions the past year or so, and often I get in such a state that I struggle to feel better for some time. So I was just wondering what you guys do when you feel down or like giving up, what do you do to cheer yourself up and get motivated again? (whether that's motivated for your art or just life in general)


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  3. #2
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    My first bit of advice; if you seriously are finding that your mood or mental state is effecting your ability to function in life then you need to seek real professional help. It is possible that you have a real problem and that treatment can help you, while no amount of self attempts will.

    Now, on the other hand, if this is just a typical bad day like everyone has then any number of things such as music, personal projects, walks outdoors, etc etc etc. You have to find the right thing for you.

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  5. #3
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    Reiterating Peter's advice, here's also my two cents.

    When it comes to art, the only thing that I really need to motivate me is seeing other people who're much better than me. It's usually more than enough to pump me back into doing more drawing/studies/etc.

    If we're talking about life, reading some good quotes always motivates me. Sometimes just remembering the good in life helps me balance out that hopelessness.

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  7. #4
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    I've suffered from depression for over 15 years now, and I regularly have days where I feel hopeless and want to give up, this goes for both my art and just life in general. There are a few things that do seem to pick me up pretty much without fail.

    The first thing is music, there are a few songs which I absolutely love that always make me feel positive, I have no idea why these songs make me feel better, they just do. If you can find songs that make you feel this way, make a playlist of them and just stick it on when you start to feel like this.

    Another, which I only found recently, is a video I found on youtube with a bunch of motivational quotes and interviews etc. by Will Smith. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ucv8O75erpg. Again, it may not work for you, but it certainly helps me out.

    As far as art goes, it's already been mentioned, but looking at paintings from artists that I admire really helps me. Also, looking at my own older paintings and comparing them to my more recent work helps as well.

    These are just the things that work for me, Hopefully they'll help you as well.

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  9. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chachava View Post
    As far as art goes, it's already been mentioned, but looking at paintings from artists that I admire really helps me. Also, looking at my own older paintings and comparing them to my more recent work helps as well.
    Now, personally, I've never dealt with clinically diagnosed anything (surprising, considering some shit I've dealt with probably left some trauma of one sort or another), so take whatever I say with a grain of salt. However, I've found that looking at artists I admire can sometimes be a double edged sword when it comes to cheering me up.

    While it is usually good advice, and as you see quite a few people on here recommend it, you have to be able to detach from your own ego a bit. In many instances that has been difficult for me, and in those examples where I've been in a slump thinking "my shit sucks" looking at someone who is better can be crippling and add elements of jealousy to the problem.

    Usually for me my approach is to have multiple different types of art to work on. If I get down on myself, thinking I can't hack it with, for example, realistically rendered concept art, sometimes I take a break from that and tinker around with stylized linoleum prints, or tinker with my sewing machine, or make puppets (actually been meaning to get to that one; haven't done it yet.) or any number of things. Then, when I'm feeling a bit better about myself and can handle whatever the issue was, I turn back to the problem and it either is an old piece that I feel I can drop, or else I'm ready to face the art of those better than myself and learn from it.

    Of course, that isn't an issue when you're on a deadline with a professional piece. In those situations you just need to swallow the pride a bit and power through.

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  11. #6
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    Thanks guys, there's some really good advice here, and it actually made me feel a little better just posting about the issue. I've had a much better day today, my art has gone well and I feel I learnt a lot which made me feel good about my work even if I still have a long way to go.

    As for the advice about looking at other people's art, that's something I sometimes get a positive result from, and other times it can make me feel down about my own art, it really varies. I've found that often it's better for me to look back on my own older art if I'm feeling down, because then I can just look at the progress I have made in comparison to my own work, rather than comparing my stuff to someone else's work.

  12. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hunchdebunch View Post
    As for the advice about looking at other people's art, that's something I sometimes get a positive result from, and other times it can make me feel down about my own art, it really varies. I've found that often it's better for me to look back on my own older art if I'm feeling down, because then I can just look at the progress I have made in comparison to my own work, rather than comparing my stuff to someone else's work.
    Just remember, you can sometimes use those moments when you are down to your advantage, too. As you pointed out, it gives you a chance to look at where you were before and see how you have improved. Sometimes when you are really proud of yourself its difficult to see the flaws in past work; but when you are being more self critical (as much as it hurts) it gives you a chance to realize where past pieces went wrong, and is a good excuse to do some pruning on your portfolio of the worst examples, and to make room for the good stuff you'll be doing once you are feeling up to it again

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  14. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Coene View Post
    While it is usually good advice, and as you see quite a few people on here recommend it, you have to be able to detach from your own ego a bit. In many instances that has been difficult for me, and in those examples where I've been in a slump thinking "my shit sucks" looking at someone who is better can be crippling and add elements of jealousy to the problem.
    I agree that this can also be true, at my lowest points for me it does tend to have this effect, and I guess it's different for everybody.

    One other thing I didn't mention in my initial reply was to get out of the house and go and meet/interact with people. If your anything like me when your in one of those situations where you just feel lost and hopeless, seeing other people will probably be the last thing you want to do. But every time I've forced myself to get out of the house and go down to the pub or go round to a friends house, I've always come away feeling better. I've either gone away and forgot about whatever it was that was bothering me for a few hours and can now look at it from a clearer perspective, or I've talked the problem through with a friend and it stops seeming like such a huge problem any more. Either way, I've generally found it a huge help.

    Glad to hear you've been having a better day, lets hope they continue like that ......I was looking for a smiley face but I saw a donkey jumping out of a fire and it seemed both a lot cooler and also kind of fitting, lol

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  16. #9
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    Nice to know that you're feeling better. Sometimes we just don't realize at that particular time, but the actual reason we start feeling low or depressed is because we have too many things on our plate at any one given time. It happened to me; I was trying to do way too much without realizing that it was taking its toll on me. Eventually I realized that you ca always go for your other goals when you've accomplished one - the best way is to get at them one at a time.

    In today's day and age, it is very easy to find inspiration. By 'inspiration', I mean inspirational quotes or real life stories which can motivate you. For instance, I have these favorite inspirational quotes of mine printed, framed and put up on the walls at my place. Quotes like these:
    • I'm gonna make the rest of my life, the best of my life.
    • You've got what it takes, but it will take everything you've got.
    • Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other.
    • SUCCESS always depends on the second letter.
    • If people are trying to bring you down, it only means you're above them.
    • The greatest pleasure in life is doing what people say you cannot do.

    Don't know whether it will work for others, but every time my eyes land on any one of these quotes, I get this sort of boosted up 'Can do' feeling.

    Whatever you do, just don't give up, even if you feel low. I read this somewhere: 'Think of your goal as a long journey, and your slump is just a little bump in the road. You can't give up with every little bump. Stay with it for the long term, ride out the ebbs and surf on the flows, and you'll get there."

    All the best!

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  18. #10
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    i also suffer from major depression which often makes doing even the smallest things feel impossible (which only makes me feel worse because i feel like i should be able to do it) but there are certain things that always cheer me up.

    music, casual talk with friends, looking at my favorite artists's work, and playing a cute calming game like animal crossing. sometimes you just need distractions from all the hectic stuff going on in your life. this is what makes little hobbies and obsessions come in handy when you least expect it. anything that calms the brain or starts pumping out those endorphins tends to do it for me. i also like reminding myself that i've been in this awful feeling position before but i always make it through. that gives me the strength to keep going on.

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  20. #11
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    Hmmm...How can I explain this without somebody ridiculing me? Fuck it, I'll just explain it. I have been in a funk for at least three years, but what one would do is draw something funny. It doesn't have to be 100 percent original; just hilarious. Think of the Three Stooges; Laurel and Hardy; Friz Freleng's best Looney Toons and Pink Panthers; Bob Clampett; Chuck Jones during his prime; the Fleischers; Tex Avery, and so on while doing so.
    The Louisianian Sketchbook You can Comment and Criticize if you want.
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    My Facebook Site I stopped using it years ago.
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  22. #12
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    I don't know. I just drink alone

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