Aleksandra Bzdzikot




How to find time to make art when you work full time

If you're holding down a full-time job or raising a family, the mere thought of making time for art seems like a luxury or a dream, that could never happen. Does it need to be like this? Can you somehow balance your day job with being an artist?



My answer is short: yes, you can! All in your life depends on you. In fact, if you look around, everybody's busy. 

The daily routine of most of us is: get up-go to work- go home-cook/clean/make sport/meet friends/spend time with your family-go to sleep. Repeat. 

Yes, it's not easy to cut some time off to do what you love. To make art. But it's not impossible. 


My philosophy is that waiting for a large chunk of time to make art is a disaster. You sit and wonder: "If I will have time next Tuesday after the gym, I will take 1 hour to make a drawing". I can tell you that it won't happen. "I have no time" is one of the biggest excuses for not taking the time to make art or something you like. 


How to overcome "I have no time" statement?




How often do you travel on business or go for holidays? Sometimes, we do it a lot. If I count  how many places I have visited from the beginning of this year it would amount to six. Six different trips. At least six days out of the ordinary routine.


Wherever you go on a business trip or for holidays take your art supplies and create there. Sometimes, a piece of paper with a pencil, rubber and ink pen is sufficient. 

Draw the landscape or the things you see for the first time.  Immerse in the full sensory experience. 

When I was in Paris last March I carried with me a small paper notebook and pencil. During sightseeing and strolling through Parisian streets I made some sketches. 

I must say it was really cold and I felt my fingers were going to freeze. Nevertheless, I made a 10-15 minutes sketch of "The Thinker" sculpture by August Rodin. 




Myth number 1: you don't need one hour or more to make art. You can spend 10-15 minutes to practise drawing. It's even faster when the weather conditions are more extreme ;)



Are you often relaxing on the beach, lying down on the blanket and doing nothing? Take up a pen and draw something! Make small sketches throughout the day. 

You don't need to search for a specific inspiration. Look around and draw what you see. Live sketching is always a perfect practise. You learn to:


a) transfer what you see on paper

b) work on spatial aspect of drawing and the perspective




We usually spend 8-9 hours per day at our work. It's a lot and it consumes the biggest part of our days. Quite often we feel tired going home with no power to focus on art and to make a drawing. Then, I have a perfect solution for you: draw during the coffee break. At least two times in a workday we make short 10-15 minutes breaks. 

The majority of people surf the internet. Why don't you do something more creative than looking at your computer screen and scrolling the news?


You don't need to have any special materials, as you can draw on a paper coffee cup or a piece of paper with a simple pen :-) 



Actually, I have made a small ritual out of drawing on the cup of my morning coffee. It's a great activity that unleashes your creativity before you move to your duties at the workplace :-)




What to do when you lack colorful paints or crayons at your workplace? Use your lipstick. Stay even more creative. 






Make art during quality time spent with your kids, partner or friends. If you go to spend Saturnday at the lake, take your sketchbook with you. If you planned to stay in with your kids - show them how to make collages. Great fun and quality time guaranteed!



 - Meet friends who have similar interests and draw together. 

 - While making shopping on a Saturday morning, stop at a nearby cafe, pull out your sketchbook and do some live sketching 

 - Sketch the food that you ordered in a restaurant. So often we just make a photo. What if you draw what you eat?


If you love to do art, for sure you will find the time to make it. Start with small chunks, 10-15 minutes cut out from your working day or a business trip.

Yes, you can do it! None of the above ideas is a rocket science.  All you need to do is to start and focus on the here and now. 




Hope you found this article inspiring. Do you have any tips on how to balance being an artist while working full time?

Tell us in the comments!


See you soon!



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