10 Ways to be Creative this Summer

Does summertime make you feel creative and want to try new things? Or do you just like to have fun in the sun? I like both, so I’m taking a break from blogging after this post until after Labor Day.

What will You be Doing for Creative Fun this Summer?

Summer is a great time to try things you might not normally do. Here are my suggestions for being creative this summer.

1.Build a Sandcastle or a Sand Painting

A.K.Andrew, http://akandrew.com

Brighton Beach by A.K.Andrew

Building sandcastles are one of my favorite childhood memories as we always had beach holidays. Some of the ones you see are amazing, not just the fill a bucket and turn it upside down kind. I love making a moat with a sand castle too, all that foamy water rushing in. And then at the end of the day you can make it disappear with one sweep of your hand or wait for a wave to do the same thing. Creative things don’t need to be permanent. Sand paintings are fun for that very reason. Do one on the beach with a stick or your finger, or buy a sand painting kit.

2.Write a Short Story

This is the time to let go, have some fun with it. And remember no-one but you will see it, unless you want them to. Write about an unexpected sexual encounter. Try out a different genre you don’t usually use. Never written about vampires? Now’s the time. Write in a different point of view, or from the point of view of a different gender, or sexual orientation. Hey, this is supposed to be fun right?

3.Go see a Film or Make a Movie

When was the last time you went to a cinema? No, not your home theatre, but a big screen-Dolby stereo-popcorn-selling cinema. Treat yourself. If you’re a regular cinema goer then try a different kind of film. For me that would be a horror film. Of course, I’d have to take something to hold up in front of the screen though! Maybe you’ll be inspired to make a short movie on your phone or camera. One of the best shorts I’ve ever seen was made by a guy who was stuck in his house in Minnesota one winter, and he used himself as the subject. It was so imaginative, and best of all, hilarious.

 4.Take a Photograph

A.K.Andrew, http://akandrew.com

Sonoma Cowboys by A.K.Andrew

We all spend so much time on our mobile phones these days, but do you use your phone camera for anything other than selfies or groups of friends laughing together? I love those photos, but it’s great to capture even simple things you see that give you a memory of the place you’ve been and the good time you had.  Better still, take an actual camera!You remember those right? I must dust mine off. I happened to catch these cowboys with my phone while driving home last Sunday morning – I wasn’t driving:-)

5.Try a Poem

Lots of people, myself included, sometimes find poetry intimidating. But if you think of poetry as being just the essential information you need, it’s not so threatening. Of course, the arrangement and choice of words is what makes poetry beautiful, striking and memorable. Play around with words that come to mind, and put them together in a bizarre order. See what happens.

6. Watercolors and Painting

A.K.Andrew, http://akandrew

Grasses by A.K.Andrew

I used to think water colors had to be twee little scenes of cottages with roses round the door. They can be if that’s what you want, but you can paint anything you want with watercolors including abstracts. Look at the beautiful watercolors from Leora Wenger she painted during a blackout. It’s a brilliant medium to take on holiday. I have a little Winsor Newton box that is about 3″x  5 ” with a telescopic paintbrush inside. The paints are little squares like a kids paint set. I’ve had so much fun with that little box. The key to both drawing and painting is really looking at your subject. And don’t try and get the whole thing in the painting. Just pick a small section, like a doorway not the whole house, or a single plant, not the whole garden etc. If you really want to be adventurous, try acrylics or oil paints. The textures are delicious.


A.K.Andrew,http://akandrew.comKids have so much fun with drawing , and there is no reason why adults can’t either. If you want your drawings to look as if you were classically trained, good for you. But if like me, you don’t have that skill, then draw whatever it is you see. If it’s stick figures – fabulous.  You know who they are, and I can guarantee that if you forget about it having to look realistic, you will have fun with it. Think simple , but creative. Look at the work of Keith Haring. I used to think drawing was an innate skill. Some people have more of a natural talent, but it can basically be learned by anyone. So you might want to elaborate on your stick figures, and give it a shot. Drawing your own hands is a great way to practise. Or look in a mirror as I did above for this self portrait. Drawing images from photographs is much easier than from real life, so that’s a good place to start too. Pencils are great, but charcoal or pastels are also really fun too. The important thing for me is the process.


Gardening  is a fantastically creative pursuit and I’m often amazed the effects people can get from very simple things eg. putting a plant in an old metal jug, or combining flowers with herbs. It’s hot and dry in the summer where I live, and I’ve seen some of the most amazing succulent gardens in our neighborhood. Years ago I thought they were a very boring plant, but once I saw them in the US, and particularly the ones that bloom, I’ve come to love them. They’re great for needing little water too, which is always a good choice. Watch your back though – gardening is addictive, and it’s easy to forget how much work you’ve done. If you find this is the case then try using raised beds. Here’s one surprise I found in a neighbors garden….

A.K.Andrew, http://akandrew.com

Pig in a Garden by A.K.Andrew

 9. Music

How many times have you heard people say, I can’t sing? Nonsense! Everyone who does not have vocal chord issues can sing. Some voices are more pleasant to listen to than others, but we’re talking about having fun here. Sing at the top of your lungs, and who cares what it sounds like. Or pick up a musical instrument you haven’t tried before. Harmonica’s and tin whistles are inexpensive. Ukulele’s can be very cheap these days. The chords are very simple,  – some only use one finger. It’s all about having fun.

10. Cooking


Wrapped Buffalo Mozzarella by A.K.Andrew

Cooking does not have to be complicated, and in the summer, many of the dishes we eat are cold. Some people are so creative in what they make. Check out Susan Cooper’s site Findingourwaynow.com. She has lots of great recipes, and you can tell she has fun in her cooking. I like simple dishes in the summer. There’s nothing more beautiful than a caprese salad – luscious heirloom tomatoes with fresh buffalo mozzarella, sprinkled with chopped basil and dribbled with balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil. Talk about a treat for all the senses.

What else do you like to do creatively? Welding, sculpture, making jewellery, beading, rockhounding? Tell us how you express your creativity. Try something new this summer, and whatever it is make sure you enjoy yourself.

Have a fantastic summer everyone and I’ll see you after Labor Day on September 8th when I have the pleasure of Jeri-Walker Bickett guest posting on Writer’s Notebook.

Come join the discussion, and please share this post on your favorite social media. 

Many Thanks!

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  1. How to get inspired? Thanks for including my watercolors. I have been working in my garden; I am soaking some nasturtium seeds right now. And I have a Fermenting Daikon Radishes post in mind – I took some photos on Friday. But no summer watercolors – yet.
    Leora recently posted..Image Titles: Add Text to an ImageMy Profile

  2. I agree, Summer is a great time to try new creative things. I’m also a big fan of Capriccioso salad, although I’ve always heard it called Caprese. And I love that you used the word “twee” in the bit about watercolors! This summer I’m going to try block printing on fabric. Hope you have a wonderful, and creative, vacation!
    Meredith Wouters recently posted..“Summer in a Glass” Lemon Iced Green TeaMy Profile

    • Ooh block printing on fabric sounds totally fun. I’m wondering if you’re using wood or a hard vegetable for that. That’s exactly the kind of project I’d love to do , but never get around to it. I’ll have to free up my dance card:-) Have a great summer Meredith – thanks.
      A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

  3. Good luck over the summer with your writing and anything else creative you decide on. For me my creative side always returns to writing, photography, and video editing. I get such a kick out of all of them. The only drawback is that they are all indoor endeavors. I am somewhat of a summer chaser so know that if I miss a US summer I will likely catch it elsewhere. That’s a nice feeling. All the best.
    Tim recently posted..I’m NOT Buying ItMy Profile

  4. Hi A.K.
    Thank you for an enjoyable post. We love seeing sandcastle sculptures competitions on the island when they come. I love creative writing, music, song writing, drawing… mostly inspired by all of the beauty we are surrounded by. Enjoy your summer and your writing. 🙂

    Kind Regards,
    William Butler recently posted..The Biology of Belief: Does What You Think Really Matter?My Profile

  5. I loved the pig in the garden. I had to blow up the picture to make sure it was really a pig. I don’t stop being creative or doing what I want just because it is summer. I do obedience, rally and agility with my dog and spend time practicing with her. It keeps us both active and gets us ready for trials in the fall. I knit all year round.
    Arleen recently posted..Potato Salad Kickstarter – Crowd-funding Campaign Raises Close to 5,000 Times It’s GoalMy Profile

    • I had to look twice myself when I saw it – almost fell over actually. There was no rail around the garden or anything. Spending time with your dog sounds great, and the obedience training, must be incredibly creative, finding new ways to achieve the same result. I would like to knit more, I love yarn stores, but it’s one of those things I don’t make time for. Have a great summer Arleen.
      A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

  6. I’ve been gearing up to paint my rustic pine furniture, but haven’t decided on how I want to pull it off. I recently chipped away the mosaic tiles I placed on my living room tables and sanded the grout off. Now I just have to wait for inspiration. I like to paint things, but can’t paint images. I like how I can have laser-focus on that type of thing, which always bleeds over into my writing as well. Aside from photography, I also like to make and edit videos (when I can find the time). Another great source of inspiration for me is to go on a long hike, the longer the better. Clears the head.
    Jeri recently posted..#WriteTip: Plotters vs Pantsers by Michael CairnsMy Profile

    • Your table project sounds fantastic, and it’s real easy to get lost in things like that – when you have the time. Your photography is great, and as I said I really must pay more attention to mine as it’s been a lifelong passion. I used to teach it in a community arts center at one point & did all my own processing which was fun. Loved to spend hours in the darkroom in fact. Being in the country, hiking or not is also a fantastic way to clear the mind and put things in perspective too.
      A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

  7. I hope you enjoy your summer. It seems like you have a nice relaxing time ahead of you. It is funny that I spent most of my life as an actress, but now that I am “retired” from the business, I don’t find as many creative pursuits. You gave me the idea of being more creative just for the fun of it.

    • Thanks Erica. It’s funny how we get out of the habit of doing things that we actually love & make us feel better. It’s always easier to feel pushed into things we ought to do before things we want to do. Hope you get back in touch with your creative self this simmer too.
      A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

  8. Summer is definitely a great time for trying out new creative activities. Outdoor exercising is another option that will benefit a lot of people. Or people who take the sun but normally don’t read could bring a book to the beach.
    Catarina recently posted..Can you lead multicultural groups spread around the world?My Profile

  9. Hi A.K. Thanks for this post. It’s almost like an OK to go ahead and do all the goofy things you want to do. I love the way you listed them
    Where I live, it’s almost like being on vacation all the time – I can find always find fun and interesting things to do. I love singing, but have a horrible singing voice but I think I’ll make my garden come alive with the ‘sound of music’ – no one’ s going to hear.
    And I really like the pig in the garden – how real.
    Anyway, have the best vacation and I’ll look forward to reading more of your posts when you return.
    Lenie recently posted..Sharing Rhubarb Know-How and…..a Great Jam RecipeMy Profile

  10. We haven’t gone to the movies in ages. Sadly, there doesn’t seem to have been many I am willing to pay to see in the theater.

    But at least there are so many other ways and reasons to build your creativity.
    Jon Jefferson recently posted..Watchdog ProtectionMy Profile

    • I’m with you on that – although I did go to the San Francisco LGBT film festival recently that is held in the Castro theatre – a fabulous restored/maintained classic 30’s cinema, complete with a live organ player before the performance. But prior to that it had been years.
      You’re creative in lots of ways anyway, but it’s great to be able to make time for the ones we don’t normally get to. Hope you manage to squeeze some in yourself this summer.
      A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

  11. You have included almost all of my favorite creative pastimes: cooking, artwork, writing and gardening. I’ll just have to build a sandcastle and find my inner musician this summer and I’ll complete the list! 🙂
    Susan Cooper recently posted..The Road Ahead: #StoryMy Profile

    • You have me cracking up over here as usual Susan! I did think of you in a number of these – obviously cooking being the main one. I look forward to hearing all about how your inner musician manifests itself:-)) Hope your recent heavy schedule will lighten to allow some play time soon.
      A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

  12. I’m happy to say I do quite a few things on this list. I rediscover the camera every summer, love to garden, always paint, stop me from singing, just try! What I have not done is try a short story. That is now on my “To Do” list. Thanks for the great tips!

    • How wonderful to hear just how creative you are! Such a pleasant surprise as it’s not what you blog about. we obviously have a lot in common Debra, which is always good to hear. Have a great summer, and thankyou so much for your comment:-)
      A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

  13. My mindset is usually in the creative zone. My husband will often say to me, “What made you think of that?” because I’ve come up with a different solution on something. I think my creativity might have been stifled in elementary school. I can recall that art class and music class teachers were rarely encouraging something “new” but instead, here is THE way to do it. Thanks AK.
    Patricia Weber recently posted..Too Busy? Try 3 Tips To Streamline Your Blog TitleMy Profile

    • I think you are most certainly creative – it’s very clear from your blog. And I had exactly the same kind of experience as a child regarding art class and music. fortunately I loved to sing, so it didn’t stifle that aspect for me, but I didn’t stat to draw until I was in my mid 20’s or paint until I was in my 30’s. I’m hoping there’s lots more tricks for this old dog to enjoy – Ha, ha. Have a great summer Pat & thanks for your comment:-)
      A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

  14. Summer always feels like a time that is different from the rest of the year, a time to go outside of the usual activities. I like all your suggestions, especially the artistic ones. I can’t bring myself to spend hours on a sand castle, only to have it gone just hours later.
    Beth Niebuhr recently posted..Confidence and How to Get ItMy Profile

    • Summer is very different , though sometimes there’s almost an unrealistic expectation to do things differently when that’s not always possible. But it’s great to have sunny days to take us out of ourselves. I too would have trouble with spending hours on a project to have it washed away, but I so like the idea of smaller ones, like sand paintings. Thanks so much for stopping by.
      A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

  15. Most summers me and my husband took long walks in evening. This summer, I am lazy. But, managed to go to beach a couple of times. I like playing with paint. Adding beads to my paintings. Sometimes, I do crochet. I like to make jewelry. Collecting rocks from beach trips is another summer fun.
    Bindu recently posted..Who am I : a Mixed Media explorationMy Profile

  16. Rather than being creative this summer, I had planned on relaxing and doing a lot of swimming, spending time with my nephew.

    I am a pretty creative person, usually. Writing poetry is something I know I should do more often…

    I like creating artwork, too – even though it’s not the greatest, I enjoy doing it.
    Lorraine Marie Reguly recently posted..Self-Publishing is A LOT of WORK! (and I need a hug!)My Profile

    • Definitely relaxing is a good think to have high on the agenda. Well done. I think the actual ‘doing’ of the artwork – or any creative form actually – is the most important thing. Have a great summer and thanks for stopping by:-)
      A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

  17. Donna Janke says

    Great ideas for summer creativity. Makes me want to go build a sandcastle. Have a nice summer.

  18. Thanks Donna. Glad you liked them. I’ll meet you down at the waters edge with my bucket & spade:-) Thanks so much for stopping by.
    A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

  19. My husband and I are addicted to movies. In the summer we go hard and see alot in the theater. In Arizona it is over a 100 degrees out and a cold movie theater is just the ticket. I love writing, going on vacations, singing in my car, trying new restaurants, and checking out places I have never seen before. Thanks for this post and reminder. I want to get my creative pants on now and get out and experience life! 🙂
    crystal Ross recently posted..The best BBQ in Phoenix‚ ArizonaMy Profile

    • Oh my goodness. There’s nothing like a beautiful air conditioned cinema in boiling hot weather. Singing in a car is a fabulous thing to do too isn’t it? I love your phrase – get your creative pants on! Hey I’m opening my closet right now…Thanks so much for stopping by:-)
      A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

  20. I love to cook already so that happens year round, but I have certainly tried my hand at gardening this summer. I guess you can say it’s been successful! My rosemary is bountiful, the chives are tall, the thyme unruly, the jalapeno plant is producing peppers as fast as I can pick them and I’m anticipating the red bell peppers, zucchini and squash I recently planted!
    Pamela Heady recently posted..Peach and Jalapeño BBQ SauceMy Profile

    • WOW! that really is giving gardening a go.How fantastic to have all these fresh things ready to pick for your kitchen. I’ev been trying to propagate some trees and some rosemary this year – prompted by the main stem of a new gingko tree blowing off in a gale early in the summer. ot all seemed to be going well, but then they died. so I’m starting again with another bracnh that needed pruning. I have some little olive branches on the go, too. We’ll see. I managed it with a fig tree ne time so I’m still hopeful.
      A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

  21. Such a great post! #2 and #4 really spoke to me as I love the beach and also photography.

    Generally, I try to get outside as much as possible during the summer. This one is no different from the others. That helps my creativity through seeing new people and places while traveling away from my home. Hopefully you’ll be getting lots of outside time during your break. I hope to see your stuff again in the future.

    Take Care.
    Carl recently posted..Jeju – Scooting around and looking back…My Profile

    • Thank you so much Carl – happy some of it at least spoke to you. yes I’m hoping I can be out & about a little more. Though of course writing tends to be an indoor pastime for me. Perhaps I should take a leaf from my own post!! Have a good summer:-)
      A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

  22. Hi A. K. First, let me applaud you for taking the summer off from blogging. You are the second of my linked in friends to do so. Paul Graham of the daily wail is taking off until mid october. My friend adrienne smith takes at least one day if not the whole weekend off every week. and harleena singh just returned from a month away. I guess singing is creative although I don’t write songs just sing the ones I know. guess the most creative thing I’m doing now is blogging. but then writing is still writing. I have recorded some videos and need to do a couple more for clients. I have thought about recording some short motivational videos say about five minutes each, but don’t tell anyone. That’s just between us. 😉 thanks for the suggestions and enjoy your time off, max
    maxwell ivey recently posted..First listings first big sale and first hard lessonsMy Profile

    • Thanks Max. It’s really important to take breaks to recharge yourself that’s for sure. And thanks for letting me know about other people who are – now I can stop feeling guilty:-Singing is most definitely creative, and doing the videos sounds like a fabulous project. You can’t have too many motivational videos, that’s for sure. Keep us all posted on that project. I’m sure everyone in BHB would like to know. Have a great summer:-)
      A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

      • Hi A. K. i wish you all the best on taking a break. I was given the idea of recording some short videos by a friend who heard i was trying to come up with a downloadable product. I’m thinking that a short video or series of them might be just the thing. I might also be able to get them into iTunes etc. thought it might help to know you weren’t the only one. Thanks for the encouragement. Of course I wil post to BHB if and when anything happens with the videos. enjoy your break, max
        maxwell ivey recently posted..First listings first big sale and first hard lessonsMy Profile

  23. I love working in the garden. This year I am trying new ways of planting, like raised beds. I also like crocheting and sewing. I am not a photographer but I do like to take pictures.
    Cheryl recently posted..Herbal Medicine: Capsules vs DecoctionMy Profile

    • The garden is very satisfying for sure, though I have limited ability for it, but have been trying some smaller things this year like small cuttings to propagate new plants. I have rosemary, a gingko & olive trees on the go at the moment. Sewing is a big favorite of mine, though I don’t do as much as I did. especially as I haven’t bought a sewing machine since we moved back to the states, But I’ll get there.
      A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

  24. Hi A.K.– I’ve been missing your always interesting posts, but I’m back. Can’t garden because I live in Manhattan, so that’s out and I’m not good at writing poetry or painting. I do want to see the new Woody Allen movie so that’s a step in the right direction. I think just walking and taking in the sites is inspiration for me. I find a lot of joy in seeing new things and enjoying the warm weather after our very cold and snowy winter. Maybe it’s not the definition of creative but walking makes me happy.
    Jeannette Paladino recently posted..Microsoft Needs a Lesson in Public RelationsMy Profile

    • Thanks so much Jeanette – it’s hard to keep up with all the blogs we like. As you saw I’m taking a bit of a break, so sorry if I’m not around as much. I think creativity comes in many forms and means many things to each one of us. certainly enjoying a good movie is being creative as , even though you’re not the film-maker it explores your creative side. Not to mention your own blog is very creative. It’s a broad spectrum Serious subjects don’t mean non-creative. Have a lovely summer and enjoy the weather:-)
      A.K.Andrew recently posted..10 Ways to be Creative this SummerMy Profile

  25. Hi AK. Because we live at the lake, I tend to take summers off to enjoy the beauty of the moment. My creativity turns to creating great summer meals, entertaining, and gardening. I can’t imagine sitting at my desk and writing, when I can be enjoying the great outdoors.
    Doreen Pendgracs recently posted..Fairmont Vancouver Airport HotelMy Profile

  26. Great ideas for summer! Being outdoors is a must at that time of year – enjoying the sun while you can.
    Krystle Cook recently posted..Your Essential Checklist for MovingMy Profile

    • For most people, the outdoors is the only way to be in the warm weather. It’s a perfect time for outdoor creative pursuits like photography too. Thanks for stopping by Krystle:-)

  27. Taking photographs and gardening is what I think the most beneficial to be creative. Thanks for the list A.K. This is my first visit to your blog and I am impressed with the content of your blog. Keep writing.
    Atish Ranjan recently posted..How to Choose the Perfect Theme for your WordPress Blog?My Profile

    • Thanks so much for your kind words and for coming to the site Atish. Both are much appreciated. And I too like both gardening and photography summer or not! Hope to see you here again:-)