Sunday, January 23, 2011

31 Art Sparks

For some time now, I've wanted to display and organize unframed paintings for extra studio inspiration. Yesterday I finally added some nice clean and contemporary white floating shelves I found at The Container Store.

These shelves (which also come in black) were perfect for displaying art because they are not too deep (just a few inches) and have a little front lip to keep your unframed pieces from sliding off. Plus, they are sturdy enough to hold a few small framed pieces. 

Seeing a collection of my pieces (as well some student work) gave me the idea to put together a quick list of art painting projects or painting challenges. Here are some quick ideas for the next time you wander into your art space thinking...Hmm, what the heck should I paint today? Enjoy!

1.    High key (very light) large landscape—snow, spring trees…
2.    Low key (very dark) still life—eggplants, black objects, rusty things…
3.    Still life with something inside something else (jar of marbles, etc.)
4.    Base your painting off of one key pigment that you don’t typically use on your palette
5.    Start your painting with a complementary outline for your subjects (blue line for an orange object, etc.)
6.    Paint from a photo (landscape, figure, floral, etc.) upside down
7.    Use a tool you’ve never used before for entire painting—palette knife, credit card…
8.    Paint a master copy of an artist you’re less familiar with (i.e. you’ll need to do some research, review their body of work, etc.)
9.    Pick a strong emotion—such as “Jealousy” and create an abstract painting about it
10.    Recycle (or complete) an old painting from the basement, studio closet, etc.
11.    Stretch your own unprimed canvas and leave some raw canvas showing for texture
12.    Something with stripes or another strong repetitive pattern
13.    A toy, board game, keepsake or something that evokes strong memories
14.    A multiple collection of something (stamps, coins, rocks, etc.)
15.    Something with letters, words, or numbers
16.    Add a figure to an existing painting (abstract, representational) for a new focal area
17.    Paint in order of the color wheel from red, to red orange, to orange, etc. Use every color somewhere.
18.    Mostly white subject(s) with a very dark background (or vice versa)
19.    Take a favorite painting and repaint it with a different composition
20.    Something borrowed before you return it
21.    Speed paint an abstract in 60 minutes (or less) with larges brush, no planning, etc. Just paint!
22.    Something with an interesting label or strong graphics (cereal box, etc.)
23.    Crumple, fold, mutilate large piece of heavy paper (black or white)—all those folds make for great value practice
24.    “Hide” at least 2 personal and secret visual symbols in your painting 
25.    Paint something very modern in a classical style (e.g. Rembrandt paints an iPod)
26.    Something or someplace that represents the state or town you grew up in
27.    Take inspiration from one of your favorite song titles
28.    Paint a new cover for one of your favorite books (classical or contemporary)
29.    Other than art, honor another unrelated passion or hobby in your art
30.    Your favorite food or snack next to your least favorite
31.     In an artist under the gun “Iron Chef” like way have a friend or family member bring or pick out a “mystery” object or photo for you. Paint this in under an hour.

Need more art sparks? Here are a few others I found online:
About's Monthly Painting Projects
A Day Not Wasted Painting Challenge
Red Bubble Acrylic Challenges 
Monthly Painting Challenge
Artists Helping Artists Monthly Challenge

Thanks as always for stopping by, please feel free to Contact Me if you have any questions about painting or my classes. Creative joy and happiness from my studio to yours!

No comments:

Post a Comment