We all have a time when we sit at our work space and freeze. We have no idea what we are going to do next. Writer's sit at their keyboards, artists stare at the dreaded sheet of white paper or canvas.
Here are a few exercises that I do as an Artist.
1. Paint over the surface in a colour - just get rid of the white. I think of it like White coat syndrome at the doctor's surgery. Your blood pressure is up, your heart rate is up. Make a change and get rid of the white.
2. Create a warm up routine. use scrap materials to just play with your media. Live a little, experiment with daring colour combinations.
3. Choose a favourite painting and sketch it in different colours. Just using your materials helps you feel more creative.
4. Look at some works you admire with a critical eye, what attracts you to the work, what marks are made, texture, colour, composition, style.
5. Visit an exhibition. Take a quick walk round without lingering. Which 2 artworks do you remember most? Go and look at them carefully this time. What had the most impact on you? Subject? Colour? Style? Looking at works that may be new to you helps to get the visual senses working.
6. Go out with a camera. Take pictures, lots of them, small details such as individual leaves and textures, light and shadow, street scenes, reflections, shop windows. Focus on what drew your attention. This is another wake up for your senses but now you are adding more environment such as weather and smells.
7 Critique a random work. Look at piece of work, not your own, and study it carefully. Note how the composition works, the colours, areas that are busy or quiet. Are there areas you think could be improved? Does an area look or feel wrong? Is there an outstanding passage? What about tones? Does the picture work in black and white? This exercise hones your skills at seeing critically but also sparks interest and gets ideas flowing. Don't critique your own work here, we want to break barriers, not create them :-)
What block busting strategies do you use in your line of work? Did you find any of these useful or food for thought?
I would love to hear your stories, so please feel free to comment below,
All the best,