Mind a Blank?
You have a blank piece of paper, canvas and the thought you want to create something, but where do you start? Being creative is harder than you think, nevertheless there are things you can do to be creative and get the creative juices flowing.
Just start scribbling. Keep scribbling and looking, do the shapes, lines suggest anything? Maybe, there is the germ of an idea, let the idea fester, play with it over a period of time. That night when you head hits the pillow close your eyes and play with the idea in your mind. The next day it could be the greatest idea in the world. Remember if it goes nowhere it is not the end of the world, but it might suggest the beginning of a new adventure.
To be truly inspired, you have to learn to trust your instincts. Don’t keep re-drawing an idea too much or planning a painting down to every intricate detail, otherwise you’ll get bored with it. Probably, everyone who looks at your finished work will feel the same. It will have that overworked, uninspired feeling about it. Remember, hard work is important, but it’s not as important as inspiration. Sometimes start a final work with only a vague idea of how it will turn out. Let the painting ‘talk’ to you as you create it. Can you listen to what it has to say?
If all else fails
Looking at a blank canvas? Paint a red spot somewhere on the surface for some reason you can’t take your eye off the spot. Now start painting and try to take the emphasis off the spot, maybe you’ll find inspiration.
If you are really stuck for ideas, don’t think of anything to do with art. Let your mind wander, observe people in the street, watch films, read books, comics, newspapers. Observe the gestures people use when interacting, queuing, eating, whatever. Take these everyday things, make gestured drawings in your sketch book. Use the drawings as a starting point and doodle, let your mind day dream and ponder on them.
Sometimes try to write down your ideas instead of drawing them. Be very brief, concise and direct. Look at the phrases you have written and do a David Bowie. Apparently, he would produce a long list of words, cut them up and scatter them, randomly picking them up and working on what the unique combinations suggested to him. Don’t over-complicate things. Picasso once said, he spent a lifetime trying to learn how to draw and paint like a 5 year old child. Children see the world in simple, straight forward ways, they speak a lot of sense, watch how they work and try to follow their uninhibited methods of self-expression.
At the end of the day don’t be afraid to scrap all your hard work and planning at the last minute and go off in a totally different direction. Don’t be too precious about your idea, it can be hard to ditch it, but, there is always a better idea around the corner for any artist.