The January Challenge

New year diet - no thanks. Dry January - not for me. The January Challenge? A five minute kickstart to your creativity every day for 31 days. No limiting or cutting back, but instead more creating. Sign me up.

The January Challenge

New year diet - no thanks. 

Dry January - not for me. 

The January Challenge? A five minute kickstart to your creativity every day for 31 days. No limiting or cutting back, but instead more creating. Sign me up.

Run by 64 Million Artists, the challenges can be anything from the very abstract ‘give it away’ to the very specific, ‘design a t-shirt’ but each one has given me the chance to try something a bit different, or at least has prompted me to look at things in new ways. 

Since the start of the month I have sketched, written poetry, taken photographs (that weren’t for the ‘gram), printed, made collages and so many other things. I’ve been made to see the world in a different way, looking at what I can make from what’s around me. I’m creating in a way that I haven’t since I was a child, armed with a gluestick, twisting sweet wrappers and digging around for colouring pencils. 

It’s even made my time on social media more productive. Rather than scrolling Instagram for meaningless content, I’m trawling the #thejanuarychallenge hashtag for creative #inspo. 

One of the biggest things about this challenge is that it has made me stop being a perfectionist. I can’t complete a perfect fully finished piece of artwork every day, so I’m having to learn to be satisfied with sketches, scribbles, messy starts and seeds of ideas. 

I’m hoping that what I can take away from this challenge is the ability and the freedom to just be creative more often, without feeling like I need to achieve something finished or even coherent. 

Challenges and resolutions can be tough to stick to, but this is one that I’m enjoying every day, genuinely looking forward to each daily challenge in my inbox and wondering how I will interpret it. I will definitely be back for more next year!

Header Image Credit: Image by 64 Million Artists

Author

Ellen Orange

Ellen Orange Contributor

I am a 24 year old Marketing Officer from the North East with a passion for arts and writing. I did a BA in English Literature and an MA in Twentieth and Twenty First Century Literature at Durham University, because I love books and reading! I have experience in writing for a variety of student publications, as well as having contributed to Living North, a regional magazine and Culture magazine, a supplement to regional newspaper, The Journal. I have been part of a Young Journalists scheme writing for NewcastleGateshead's Juice Festival, a young people's arts and culture festival, and have since become a Team Juice member. As well as reading and writing, I love theatre, photography and crafts.

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