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14 Quotes for When You’re in a Creative Rut

Even the most gifted artists encounter creative roadblocks. While we might only see the polished end product of a captivating novel or majestic painting, the early hours in the making of these projects are often spent staring at a blank page or canvas before inspiration finally strikes. At the beginning, it may feel impossible to create something new and original out of thin air, but the creative spark comes in due time.

It may be easy to feel discouraged when working on a creative project, but the key is to never give up. It’s important to realize that these feelings of lacking inspiration are just temporary hurdles on the road to producing art. As long as we keep our passion and ambition, we all find our inspiration eventually.

Here are 14 uplifting quotes for when you’re in a creative rut.

Don’t think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity. It’s self-conscious, and anything self-conscious is lousy. You can’t try to do things. You simply must do things.
Ray Bradbury

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Creativity comes from trust. Trust your instincts. And never hope more than you work.
Rita Mae Brown

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We have to continually be jumping off cliffs and developing our wings on the way down.
Kurt Vonnegut

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If you hear a voice within you saying, “You are not a painter,” then by all means paint, boy, and that voice will be silenced, but only by working.
Vincent van Gogh

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An idea that is not dangerous is unworthy of being called an idea at all.
Oscar Wilde

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A rock pile ceases to be a rock pile the moment a single man contemplates it, bearing within him the image of a cathedral.
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

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Winners are not those who never fail, but those who never quit.
Edwin Louis Cole

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Don’t think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it’s good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they are deciding, make even more art.
Andy Warhol

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Show up, show up, show up, and after a while the muse shows up, too. If she doesn’t show up invited, eventually she just shows up.
Isabel Allende

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The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.
Sylvia Plath

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There is no “right” way to make art. The only wrong is in not trying, not doing. Don’t put barriers up that aren’t there — just get to work and make something.
Lisa Golightly

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All profound distraction opens certain doors. You have to allow yourself to be distracted when you are unable to concentrate.
Julio Cortázar

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The creative process is a process of surrender, not control.
Julia Cameron

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Creativity doesn’t wait for that perfect moment. It fashions its own perfect moments out of ordinary ones.
Bruce Garrabrandt

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Featured image credit: Brownie Harris/ Corbis Historical via Getty Images

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About the Author
Bennett Kleinman
Bennett is a staff writer at Optimism as well as a freelance comedy writer. He's based in New York City.
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