I am in a post album slump. This has happened after every album I have released since 1990. In the early years I thought it meant something was wrong, that I had lost my muse, mojo or some other superstitious artist turn of phrase. Well let me tell you this is normal. It is normal to feel flat, empty and rather useless after completing an album (or any other project for that matter).
You put so much of your energy and creativity into making this project come into being. When it is done you want to keep going. You want to keep creating but this isn’t right.
Getting back on the creation wagon too soon just makes you feel bad so if you have demons or indulge in bad behaviors then you are more likely to jump off the rails which benefits no one. It is another direction you need to take to get you back into being the artist you are.
An artist is an artist all the time but can’t be productive all the time. There has to be ebb and flow. A time to breathe in life and a time to breathe out your thing. Breathing out your thing is easy (well sort of) as that is what you are driven to do but breathing in life doesn’t feel quite so natural.
As you get into a project, nervous energy has you creating all over the place and this is right at the time, you feel alive but the time after is just as important, if not more so. You need to take in real life to imitate it into new art and the only way to take in life and therefore new material to create from is to do normal things. Go to the beach with your dog, wife or snorkel. Clean the kitchen. Do something that isn’t music, painting or the thing you do. Quite simply be one of the other other parts of you.
Some artists even out by having a second string, some musicians paint. This second string creativity is not a bad thing; I have often turned from an album to making sounds or instruments for sale. But even so it is good to do something completely different and even perhaps mundane, some musicians play golf and if that isn’t mundane I don’t know what is LOL.
It is in the process of doing something different from the way you see yourself as an artist that you will find your next direction or muse. Then you are on and back in the creative rush again.