For the past couple of months I've been having so much fun with clay in between spurts of painting. And it's terrific utilizing the doilies made by the grandmothers...a nice way to collaborate with the previous generation. After painting chairs for years (...and years), I finally created a 3-dimensional one. No reason for it, just for fun.
As an artist I do think that switching media once in awhile is a good thing. Sketching is something that I feel is an important practice on a daily basis but changing to wood, clay or even watercolour once in awhile helps to keep my creative juices flowing.
Especially when I feel stuck on a project. Or afraid to take the next step. Doing something different just to play is a great way to break down barriers. I find that working on paper is less intimidating at times than canvas, my expectations are very low to non-existent so it brings me back to the joy of creating for creation's sake. Same thing with clay. I can smoosh it and begin again. Kind of reminiscent of early childhood.
But I try not to make a habit of doing too many things too often. I find that focusing is a good thing, like working on a series of paintings in a specific style or genre. Excellent to push the creative muscles and to learn the value of commitment. It really feels wonderful to see a completed body of work after a period of time. Plus the work does get better, stronger over time.