handlettered card: start again

Today I’m sharing a simple handlettered start again card.

It’s been quiet on this blog and over at my instagram account as well, for the past weeks. There were a few reasons – but the one that bothered me the most is feeling intimidated. It bothers me to this day, in fact. Sometime during the past weeks the way I was looking at other artists’ output changed. Usually I love looking at pictures, photos, you name it. It is a great source for inspiration, and to understand how other creatives put together their art is elating to me.

Of course it’s not that after looking at a technique you will instantly be able to use it as well, but it might provide an insight. With practice you will be able to put your own spin on their technique, and your own art will be richer because of this. However, like I said, during the past weeks my perception shifted.

Suddenly, I found myself frustrated with everthing I was coming up with. Nothing felt original. And worse: I was looking at things from a perspective of popularity. Spend enough time browsing any specific tag on instagram or tumblr, and you will surely notice the trends. There will always be a style du jour, something that appeals to a large number of people. And it can be oh so tempting to go with this trend. To just mindlessly copy until you’re a machine producing only derivates of popular motifs.

But it won’t feel right, at least not to me. And it is part of the reason I was so frustrated with my output. It had no soul, because it didn’t come from me. It came from the endless stream of pretty things on the internet. I took a break from everything. Disconnecting, whichever way, can feel so liberating. No more making of cards for me. No handlettering, no watercolors. And it helped. Once I stopped overthinking all these things, I found my way back to why I create. I found pieces of myself again. I could disengage my own reasons from external validation. I’m not saying that it’s easy to do this, or that I don’t struggle. But I am feeling much better than I did a couple of weeks ago.

And now, finally, it feels right to start again. It feels good to pick up brushes again. There’s a spark of joy when opening my color palettes. Thus, I put this feeling into a card. It’s okay to take breaks sometimes. Afterwards, the coming back to something – the rediscovery of what you love – will be so much sweeter.

For this handlettered start again card I used:

  • rico design brushes
  • white cardstock
  • pelikan watercolors for the base layer
  • fine-tec shimmer watercolors for accents
  • wow! heat tool (optional)
  • edding brushpen for the handlettering (I’m not happy with the feathering & will likely switch brands once this pen is empty)

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