Hello! My name is Mila, and I am a multi-tasker to the max! It is in my nature to take on many tasks and roles in my life and because of that I am always thinking of ways to stay inspired. I always knew I needed to be in a creative field when I was deciding what I was going to study in college. Growing up along two Architect parents, I felt comfort in creation and developing ideas. After a few detours, I also studied Architecture, took time after my Bachelors to work in the professional field, and now, am back in school pursuing my Master’s so that I may one day, be a licensed Architect. Being an architecture student gives you little free time, but I stretch it out as much as I can, creating jewelry with my mother and sister, developing my blog, Mila's Thoughts, and exploring all areas of design. In such a competitive field, where so much needs to be invented and re-invented to stay original, staying inspired is key. Here are some things I keep in mind:
1. Understand what you love. ---> Before we set out to accomplish something, we have to make sure our heart is all in it. Ask yourself, am I doing what I love? Do I believe in what I’m about to put all my energy into? If we don’t have passion, it is going to be a bit tougher to stay inspired and create to the best of our ability. This is something we will always have to work on in our careers, because let’s face it, sometimes we just don’t have the luxury of working on things we love. But if we have an understanding of it and we get excited about the task, it will show. It will be that much more successful.
2. Soak up energy from the things you like and the people who support you. ---> What’s better than looking at your favorite things to inspire you? If you believe in something, a book, a design, an article, then you can learn from its strength. When I want to get inspired for my architecture design class, I research. I open books on my favorite designers, watch videos of their work, and speak with other architects and students. Or I go to those in my life who know me best: my parents and my boyfriend. They believe in me so they can help me believe in myself. The energy in those sources makes my mind go into major inspiration mode. I absolutely love going to the lectures at my school when they host an architect. They give great presentations on their work, how they produce, and stay inspired. I sketch the whole time, write lots of quotes down, and save it for when I need it. (Usually at 3am when I’ve reached my limit and am too tired to keep designing!)
3. Talk about what you’re doing. ---> Conversation is very important for those with a creative soul. When I just can’t seem to resolve an issue in my design and looking at my sketchbook makes me dizzy, I stand up and go talk to my peers, or my parents. Don’t be afraid of discussion because it is through the combination of minds that we come up with the greatest ideas. Buildings, just like many other things, are created through collaboration. Bouncing off ideas, or simply stating your thoughts to someone else, can help you get back on track because many times all you needed was another set of eyes or ears to catch what it was that got you stuck in the first place. When we are passionate about what we are designing, we can talk about it and defend it, even when it needs a little work. And hey, who doesn’t like a good coffee break at your favorite spot with the perfect mood for inspired conversation?
4. Customize your workspace. ---> Where you work, create, craft, read is so important to your productivity. Having your own personal space will really help you get comfortable and be able to create without worrying about the mess, or the people around you. I have a few different places where I work: the office, my architecture studio, and my desk at home. I can’t really adjust my office space but when it comes to studio and my home, I make sure to make it comfortable. My favorite item is a pin-up corkboard. Show case what you love. Surround yourself with the necessary supplies. The right lighting, music, maybe a T.V. Sit on something comfortable. It can be simple, as long as it allows you to focus on what you’re producing and not how awkward you feel producing it. When you need inspiration, you should be able to find a book//magazine at arms reach. Look at your inspiration board, and have plenty to sketch on. There’s always a good coffee shop as well. When I need a good latte and a cozy spot to read, I head over to my favorite one.
5. Have fun! ---> It is best if we enjoy the process. The good and the bad. You need a break? Take one! Reward yourself and don’t put more pressure than you can handle. The more sincere we are about what we do, the better it is, so having fun while we work (or when we take a break) will make our product amazing. Surround yourself with the music you love, your favorite supplies (I have my favorite pen that makes all the difference!) and go for it! And definitely make sure to smile through the process.
I believe in all of you and I hope these 5 tips were helpful reminders and can help you refocus when needed. Remember, it’s okay to have an off day. That’s what we’re here for – to support each other. Thank you, Savannah, for letting me share & also for being one of my sources of inspiration! -- Mila
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Thank you, Mila, for your fabulous tips on staying inspired!!