Sometimes there are those days… That’s when I’d go through old sketchbooks, trying to find something appealing, a dropped idea or something unfinished that could use a happy ending. I’d surf the internet, google stuff, look at pictures but nothing would excite me.
Sounds familiar? Well, then I hope I can help!
Here are some ideas to get back into gear:
1. consult your sketchbooks (always have notebooks nearby to write down ideas for later use)
2. go through a stack of old interior design magazines, look at patterns, color combinations and textures and make a collage
3. doodle: try different shapes like circles, triangles, squares with 3 colors from the same color family
4. paint something that you have painted before (I guarantee that it will NOT look like the original and the process will be entirely different)
5. practice something that you haven’t mastered yet, haven’t sketched in a long time?
6. mix a cool new color and play with it (I’ve just recently discovered bright neon pink and I am thrilled I discovered it)
7. copy your favorite master and practice your color mixing skills, add your own touch/change it
8. turn your power music on, close your eyes and let go of whatever is holding you back (some crazy dancing helps me loosen up)
Most importantly: don’t plan to create another masterpiece, all you want is get back into creativity and generate ideas! So don’t set your expectations too high. As soon as your ideas are flowing, you’re back in the game anyways.
Just recently (to be precise: at Powell’s bookstore in Portland, my new favorite bookstore) I came across books from Rolina van Vliet, she’s an artist from the Netherlands and teaches how to be creative with detailed ideas for abstract projects. There are some general guidelines and examples from her students to show what could be but she encourages you to come up with your own project.
Funny, so far, I haven’t finished any of her tasks because every time I read one chapter and make a plan, my imagination takes me away and generates new ideas. I realized that I am using many of her techniques already. It’s a great source of inspiration and idea generator: Painting Abstracts: Ideas, Projects and Techniques.
Her books are the only ones I have found on the market that suggest project ideas. Have you come across project books that I haven’t heard of? Let me know, I am always grateful for inspiration and new ideas!