View Full Version : MTM Classroom - Creativitiy Workshop (May 2 - 14)

05-02-2009, 10:47 AM
Hello Class! I'm Kathy, your Substitute Teacher for the MTM Classroom this session. :D

Since I'm stepping in at the last minute here to help out I don't have a fixed lesson set up, but I thought now would be a good time to talk about Creativity, how we use it, and how we can find it if we've lost it!

I suspect we will also touch on inspiration, because those two seem to go hand in hand.

I will be posting a few exercises to help up boost our creativity as the 12 days go on, and hopefully the Acrylics Forum regulars will stop in and tell us what inspires them, and what they do to boost their own creativity when the ideas for painting seem to run out, or how to take your painting out the it's rut and boost it to a new level. (That's my Hope at least! :rolleyes: LOL)

So welcome to the classroom and have a seat - we are going to take off on a flight of imagination for the next two weeks.

Kathrin G.
05-02-2009, 11:04 AM
Good Morning teacher :wave: :wave: :wave:

Good Morning class :wave::wave: :wave:
I got myself a seat in front row :D Fantastic subject and I am eager to learn :)

05-02-2009, 11:12 AM
Morning Kathy and Kathrin,

Kathy this is really great of you to jump in, I'll be watching and paying attention to everything offered and I will participate when I can.

Pulling up a chair next to Kathrin..lol


05-02-2009, 11:15 AM
Did one of you bring donuts for the teacher? ;)

Kathrin G.
05-02-2009, 11:19 AM
Donuts, choccies, bikkies, .......and coffee :D :lol:

Good Morning Elaine :wave: Yippee, couldn't ask for a nicer person to sit beside :D ( and that way I can ask you about all the stuff I dont know as well :p )

05-02-2009, 11:20 AM
And you get an A... oh wait....

never mind....


Kathrin G.
05-02-2009, 11:23 AM
did I mention the chocolate is extra creamy and the donuts come with 4 different toppings ..........:angel: :lol:

05-02-2009, 11:40 AM
Excellent - that should get us a few more participants looking for leftovers!

I don't know many artists that haven't at one time or another looked for ways to increase their creativity. Some of us get stuck because we do the same type of painting in the same style all the time and feel stagnant. Some of us get overwhelmed with choices when we are painting and get lost in all of it. Some of us just get blocked and just don't even know where to start with a painting, and the idea of setting up all the paints and painting something we don't like is discouraging.

There are lots of reasons why we look for inspiration, for a creative charge, and we think that if we wait our creative muse will come along and give us that push to get going.

I have to be honest with you, my muse is lazy. She likes to sit around and watch soap operas, eating chocolates and petting her cat. The only time I ever see her is when I've been working away on a painting for days and she'll show up just towards the end and say, "That looks pretty good. See how great I am?" Before flopping back on the couch and flipping the channel to Dr. Phil.


What I'm saying is that we need to create our own inspiration, and to do that we need to step out of what is comfortable, but with a plan.

Does that sound like an interesting idea?

Kathrin G.
05-02-2009, 11:46 AM
Having had an artist block for nearly 6 months last year and just about escaped another one by switching from pencil to acrylics.....I do need a plan. I will shut up now so but I am all ears :thumbsup:

05-02-2009, 11:51 AM
switching mediums is a great way to give your creativity a boost. I have found that the more things that I try, the more techniques that I get into my "artist's tool kit" the more options I have available for my art.

05-02-2009, 12:05 PM
The really great thing about acrylics is their versatility! Then when you add in all the mediums, gels, and fun things (like glass bead gel) there are lots of ways to explore.

if you are worried about wasting an expensive canvas on something experimental you can always use watercolor paper or illustration board instead. Then if turns out great you can get it framed, and if it doesn't then you have still learned something!

I cut up postcard sized cards from bristol vellum and gesso them on both sides - then I can use those to try things before I commit to them on canvas.

05-02-2009, 12:05 PM
Morning teach...sorry I am late! Since Kathrin brought this morning's donuts, I'll bring tomorrows. Brought an extra thermos of coffee, in case we need it!

Sounds like your muse is similar to mine...tho' mine tends to play computer games and watch Judge Judy. :D

Scoot over a little, Elaine and Kathrin....we can all help each other, while Kathy teaches us!

05-02-2009, 12:12 PM
I have to go out for a while today, but I'll leave you with a few exercises you can use to try and start thinking outside of what you normally do. Pick one - or try all of them. Don't use a canvas if that makes you nervous, use paper (heck - you can even use cardboard if you need to - I won't tell!)

a) Paint a self-portrait, without you in it. Choose things that represent you, colours, places, found objects, and then put them together to make a portrait of you that doesn't actually have your image in it, just pieces of you.

b) Paint a Pair! Take an image that you like then paint two small versions of it, one with just two colours (plus white) and the next one adding another colour... you can keep going up to ten small paintings.

c) Paint light and dark. Take an image and paint a dark painting of it... where the light is muted, and the colours are too. Then paint it again in bright light with deep shadows and really bright highlights.

05-02-2009, 12:14 PM
Welcome Susan (((hugs)))

I have a zillion things I need to do with the kids!

feel free to chat it up this session - getting creative happens a lot easier in a group when we bounce ideas around and see what happens!

Kathrin G.
05-02-2009, 01:39 PM
Hi Susan :wave: The more coffee the better :wink2: :D
Teach, I will give those exercises a try in a while :thumbsup:
I just discovered another way to give your muse a kick up the butt :p ......clean up / rearrange your workspace :smug:
I just did exactly that and love the difference in available light and space I managed to create :D :heart:
I am off to start my next project and I can do the exercises while the main painting is drying. Hurray :clap:
Thank you teacher, it is working already :)

05-02-2009, 01:59 PM
Hiya Teacher!!
Move on over Elaine, Kathrin and Susan, I'm gona finaly learn something!!:lol: I hope!!:D
Brought a Large Jug of Ice Tea with me.. help yourselves!!
/grabs a Donut!:smug:
hmmm I dont know where to start with that kinda exercise. interesting! have to think about it.:confused:

Shirl Parker
05-02-2009, 02:35 PM
Here's a link for ways to get ideas. "30 Painting Ideas from Idioms and Sayings"

05-02-2009, 03:26 PM
WOW! What a blessing having you is Kathy!
I enjoyed your last class so much and learned a lot from it!
Now you are here just when I need you!
I need "PASSION" you know, when you paint something and while it resembles your reference, it is totally yours?
I have been stuck in the "Mirror Image" rut for too long, and With you pulling the chains, I just know that I will be pulled free of my mediocrity!
Brought a big plate of home-made Croissants (25 layers of pastry) that my daughter & I made yesterday( to go with all the drinks already on the table)

05-02-2009, 03:27 PM
Great ideas Thanks Shirl!
YEAH!!!!:clap: Postman came with my new book I ordered this week!!!:D
Expressive Portraits: Creative methods for painting people by Jean Pederson!.... THANKS KIM for suggesting it!!

05-02-2009, 04:03 PM
Some great ideas here folks! It's great to have a conversation about creating, because it's always inspiring.

Today I took a book out of the library on anatomy for artists (some thing that I've always been nervous about) hoping to get better at drawing hands and feet from the bones up! :)

There are lots of great books from the library that are great for inspiration, anything by Nita Engle, or Betsy Dillard Stroud is always good to get me revved up for painting.

Also! I took out a bunch of kids art books... I love how they break the design of things down to the basic elements and you still know what it is. Sometimes a few strokes of the brush is all you need to get your point across :D

(mmmm croissants)

05-02-2009, 05:41 PM
I must confess to being mostly a >lurker> (with all the talent on this site, it is amazing how much you can learn that way) and I sure will be following this thread. Painting is something that I took up a couple of years before I retired and that I have now gone back to, now that I am retired.

My problem is having to do with >seeing> the potential for art in plain objects, sceneries etc.

I look at ref pics and paintings of many of you and am simply amazed at all that you see (which I miss:envy: :crying: ) and how liberally one can use one's artistic license to paint something that turns out beautiful:envy: . I too am inclined to want to copy because I fear of being ridiculed if I used my own imagination etc, etc.... talk about stiffling creativity

So count me in. Got my goodies and all ready to learn

Thank you for initiating this class:clap:

05-02-2009, 05:54 PM
Hi y'all! :wave:
Had to work this morning...but I'm here now!

buddingartist, welcome! You will not find a more wonderful group of people than those who hang out here! Glad to have you join us!

Kathy, the "self-portrait" exercise sounds fun!

One thing that helps jump-start me (when I'm in that awkward "between paintings" place) is just looking through photos. I might not actually use any I find, but it just gets me thinking.

05-02-2009, 06:35 PM
Buddingartist! Welcome to the class - I'm delighted you are going to join us. I hope you can find some "tricks" here to help get you to where you want to be.

I usually keep art magazines around to inspire me... usually I see a technique I want to try then I figure out what subject I can make work with the technique (I'm a little backwards sometimes!) lol

05-02-2009, 07:21 PM
Hi Kathy Hi all :wave: :wave: :wave:

Looks like this has got the makings of a good one :angel:

Time to paint

:thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

Kathrin G.
05-02-2009, 08:01 PM
plenty food for thought in this class already :clap: :clap: :clap:
looking forward to meeting you all back here tomorrow :wave: Good Night :wave:

05-02-2009, 08:34 PM
What?1?! I just got here and you are leaving? I brought brownies and ice cream too.

My problem is I see something to paint all the time, in pictures, driving down the road, on TV, everywhere and can't decide what to paint. I worry about any number of things instead of just doing it. I need a kick start big time.:lol: Any ideas on how to stop procrastinating? I have plenty of reference photos I want to paint... sometime.:D

05-02-2009, 08:44 PM
Sorry...no "anti-procrastination" voodoo here. :rolleyes:

I am a card carrying member. :smug:

I've only been painting about a year, so I haven't yet lost my newly-found muse....we are still in the 'honeymoon stage". :lol: But I'm sure there will come a time........I want to be ready to re-light those fires. :evil:

Besides...why would you procrastinate about painting?

05-02-2009, 09:15 PM
Patti, sometimes when I am not sure what I want to paint next I make a list of subjects. The first one is the one to start painting. The other thing that I do (so that I won't put it off...) is I have four tubes of my favourite colours out handy(instead of tucked away with my other supplies), a small brush, and a stack of those gessoed post card sized brostol... then I can make a value sketch, or just a sketch of what I want to paint. Even if I just tape it to the wall... it will sit there looking at me and reminding me that there is a full blown painting waiting for me to make it.

that usually gets me motivated, because I know I can do better than the sketch that is out there for everyone to see! LOL

05-02-2009, 09:16 PM
Dee.... because I can't seem to make up my mind about 'what' to paint with so many choices. I don't really know any other reason. If I'm not painting I'm thinking about it... wierd, huh?

Edited to add:
Sorry Kathy, we posted at same time. That sounds like a good idea, but I have never sketched, just to sketch. I guess I need to start that.

05-02-2009, 09:20 PM
Too many images in the head at once? Yeah, I get that too sometimes.

My "fix" for that is to start some of the "strongest" ones and then "go" with the one(s) that grab(s) me.

05-02-2009, 09:36 PM
that's why I make the list Dee... the first one is obviously the one that's on my mind.

Of course sometimes I dream what I'm supposed to paint (my subconscious giving my a kick in the butt I guess! LOL ) Those dream images have always been my best ones! the dragonfly in my siggie was one of those.

05-02-2009, 09:42 PM
Patti - sometimes just doodling and fooling around with a pencil and paper can yield some great painting ideas!

05-02-2009, 09:59 PM
Hi everyone. Just have to join on this. What a great class to have. I brought fresh baked chocolate chip cookies with me so help yourself. When it comes to jump starting my painting I look through photos also. I also always carry a small camera with me. I'll take a few shots of something that interests me. I figure I can play around with the photos at a later time. It's a great way to train the eye to look for the "art" in things.

I'm so looking forward to hearing what everyone does to get/keep the creative juices flowing. In fact this website has helped me that way!


Kathrin G.
05-03-2009, 02:55 AM
Good morning teacher :wave: good morning class :wave:
.......looks like I am the first in ......okay, I put out the painting supplies for everyone, get the coffee ready and all the yummies out for later :smug:
looking trough the notes you guys left behind on your desks, you all got plenty ideas up the sleeve :thumbsup:
What I want to know is why non of them works when your there, when you are burned out and in the slumps.
I am only doing art since late 2007 but learned so much and was flying it, suffered from artist block already in April 2008, didn't touch a pencil for 5 months. Got out of it and went back to a pile of commission work, loved it, but nearly burned out again in February :eek: Only for the MTM class and my dream of learning how to paint, I would be already deep in it again.
I found nothing would pick me up once I was down.
So what do you do when you are already in it :confused:

05-03-2009, 04:18 AM
Well....not sure that this totally qualifies...but I think it is creative, and I only used to colors...and they were the complimnents...(I think, if I remember all that correctly) Cad red medium and diox azine purple.

The only addition, umm, errr, was glitter...but it is acid free glitter. :D

Anyway....tada....my first effort...and last for this evening/morning. I am gonna hate myself in the am...:o


It really sparkles in real life...and so do my hands and clothes and workspace...:lol:

Kathrin G.
05-03-2009, 06:18 AM
wow, a really cool dragon :clap: :clap: :clap:
Now, why would you hate yourself in the morning :confused:

05-03-2009, 07:03 AM
:wave: Hi Kathy and Classmates!

What a great idea for a class, and thanks for stepping in at the last minute, Kathy! I hope to have some time to try one of your exercises. The self portrait without self sounds especially interesting!

About creativity and artist's block, I've stagnated a few times myself and it can be quite frustrating. Here are some things I've tried:

1) Put on some music you don't usually listen to while painting and see what comes forth. Music without words is the best, like classical or jazz.

2) Put together a still life from things around your house. It's fun to do this, taking lots of photos, choosing a crop and then seeing the paintings come to life!

3) Let the colors choose. Sometimes I'll get all my paints out, look them all over, taking out the ones that inspire me at that moment, then, create an imagination painting from those colors.

4) Watch a painting video from a painter you admire. This almost never fails to revive the painting bug.

If I can think of more, I'll post back. :)


05-03-2009, 07:05 AM
:wave: Susan - your painting is awesome! I love the design and colors and the glitter add a touch of whimsy. You have such a wonderful imagination! :D


05-03-2009, 10:36 AM
Good Morning Class! :)

Susan! I'm delighted that you tried something new and posted it for us. The glitter makes it even more creative! :clap::clap::clap::clap: Bravo!

I'm off to the zoo with the family today. If I get any good reference pictures I'll post them here for you all.

Here are some thoughts on breaking your artists block. Make an art date for yourself every week. Go out and see things, take a little sketch book and sit in a park and draw little gesture sketches of what interests you, or go to a cafe and watch the people. Go to an art gallery or show at a musuem. Look at what is there and think about what you might have done differently with the art, how you might have made it if it was yours.

It is really important to get out and look at stuff when you are an artist. We see the world.

Here is a reference photo for you guys for today. (you can get the original in my reference photo section of my Flikr account here (http://www.flickr.com/photos/calliopesmusing/3496401497/))


What I would like you to do with this reference (or a reference of your choice) is pick a part of it that you really like and zoom in. get really close ...

now look at it carefully and choose your colours. they don't have to be the colours you see, chose the colours you WISH you could see.

(BTW I'll be adding more photos to the reference section and you can use any of them that you like at anytime. :) )

OK - off to the zoo

Oh and Kathrin... a great book to break a serious Artists Block is called The Artist's Way.

Charlie's Mum
05-03-2009, 11:45 AM
:clap: :clap: for Kathy - who is keeping us going here and not letting anyone snooze away 2 weeks!!!!

I'm suffering a block just now - it descended suddenly about 3 weeks ago and getting started again is a real difficulty!

However, I always work better under pressure, so I commit myself to something and a timescale and just know I have to produce - so that's what I've done and now have to paint trees, trees, trees ;) But it will get me going again with serious stuff!

Another thing is to look at colour - because for me, colourful things are eye candy (like looking at coloured silks en masse in a fabric/embroidery shop or stall). They always inspire me.

Artist magazines testing new materials or techniques also help and recently I've been reading about Mixed Media, which I seldom delve into, but these articles look at it a bit differently and because there's lots of vibrant colour, they've got me itching to try! :D

I also go through my sketch books and photos.

As we're not far of dinner time here, I'm offering wine instead of coffee and bikkies ;) - I could make a still life with the bottle, glasses and dinner ingredients - but it wouldn't last long enough to photograph!!!!!!!!! ;)

See you all later! :D

05-03-2009, 12:26 PM
Thanks, Kathrin!! I meant I would hate gettting up after going to bed so late!! It was almost 4am before I fell asleep, and it was hard to crawl out at 8:30, But I did it...:)

Thanks, Elizabeth!!

Kathy, teacher extrordinaire...thanks!! Not sure what kind of time I will have today...I am alone with the manchild, but it is pouring down rain....so who knows!

05-03-2009, 12:27 PM
good morning class!:wave:
Wow Susan that is a great dragon!! Love the added glitter!!

I usualy rummage thru my photos I have a album of them and a recipe box full.. need to get a bigger box!! and get ideas.
Sometimes depending on the date, I think of who's birthday or anniversary or grad gift I can make a gift for and work on that.
Like Dee I'm still new to painting as of Feb 08 and still in the beginning of my muse.
I also carry my camera EVERYWHERE. even walking for exercise, when I look at the trees I look at the bark and tones in the folage and think how I would do that.. guess thats just the artist in us!!
I take all kindsa photos all the time and save them in a folder called ideas, which have SOOO many subfolders according to catagory.
I love that photo Kathy, I can see how I would crop those apples down, Love the bright red on the black background, great contrast. I realy love closeup crops too!! VERY dramatic, so everything I view I think how will I crop that. and Save many photos I find on the internet.

My Husband is into radio controlled airplanes and we have a 4 seater plane also so with his magazines I go thru and take photos and crop them. unfortunately If its a copyright you have to watch out for that... but if its cropped maybe thats excluded or change in color. at least you get the shapes of the planes and go from there.. same with the horse magazines in this area. are numerous.

I find the kiddie magazines have great animal photos in them!! even highlights magazine is great references.

sooo right now no slump for me.. working on a commission, but love to learn always so I'm here at the back of the class!!!

05-03-2009, 04:15 PM
Hi all - back from the zoo - now I think I might have some great pictures to share with you... and a neat story too.

I'll have to see how the pictures turned out though!

thanks to everyone for chipping in with your ideas.

The thing about creative blocks for me is that I still need to do "the work" whether I am inspired or not I need to do it. The thing is that often once I get going I start to get more inspired, and then once I get excited about it the project it really starts to fly.

For some people I might suggest that even if you aren't inspired to get to work anyway and see what comes for you. On friday night I was dog tired and didn't feel like doing anything. But I was at my friends house to paint with her so I started with my least used tube of colour (raw sienna... I never use it - in fact I think I broke the seal on it for this painting) I just started to use it as a back ground colour... then added some interference red oxide on top (another one I have never used... then I looked at that and brushed purple over top, then bronze... and just kept layering the paint and now I have this really interesting canvas waiting for me to keep working on... (it might be REALLY thick by the time I'm finished, but who cares?)

sometimes the only way to get over the block is to paint something... anything

05-03-2009, 09:59 PM
I agree Kathy...anything helps...seems to get something back. I do know most of those 'forced' paintings are pretty bad...but the next one is usually pretty good.

05-03-2009, 10:46 PM
Maybe it's because you know you can do better than that painting you just made yourself do that gets you motivated again! :)

05-03-2009, 11:55 PM
Could be!

05-04-2009, 12:05 AM
Sorry I missed class today, just too many things that came up. I love reading everyone's ideas on battling the creative slumps. And I agree, you really have to push to paint. Just create something to get things flowing again.

I'm lucky enough to live close to NYC, and if the slump gets bad, then a visit to one of the museums will inspire me again. My favorite is the Met. Going there on a sunday morning is so inspirational (and somewhat spiritual too). It helps to remind me how much I love that feeling - of pushing color paint around on a canvas, and seeing something come to life.

Kathy had mentioned the book The Artists Way. I recommend it also, to anyone who needs a bit of help in getting past a creative block. I had once put the paint brushes down and didn't attempt anything artistic for 8 years! A simple night course in mosaics and The Artists Way helped me get back again.

And Sue, I love your dragon! It's wonderful!!

05-04-2009, 01:12 AM
When I am stuck I start thinking of movie titles. song titles, or book titles and it just puts me a mood and an image comes to mind and it is time to get the brushes out. Imagine "Singin' in the Rain", "Cruisin'" The song by Huey Lewis and Gyneth Paltrow. "Showboat"..."Since I fell for you" "House of the Risin' Sun".... "People are Strange" ..."Fat Bottom Girl".... "Rock around the clock"..."Hawaii" .... "Pretty in Pink"... "Hungers' Bride"... "CanCan".. "From here to Eternity" ..."Wuthering Heights"... "Aquarius"..."The Producers"... "Cats"..."Phantom of the Opera" ..."Kathy's clown"..."Chicago".
Actually I title a painting before I paint it sometimes. It really drives me to create moods or places or people or Characters.
Hope this helps someone.

Charlie's Mum
05-04-2009, 09:14 AM
Susan - so sorry :eek: I meant to comment on your dragon painting and then forgot!! I do like both composition and colour - I also think it's one of your best! Must be the freedom to express :D Really like it though!
BTW - a complementary of a red would be in the green range and a comp of the purple would be in the yellow range of colours.
Doesn't matter though, I love this combination you have here - and all the glitter! :lol:

..."Fat Bottom Girl".... - now that conjures up old fashioned picture postcards from the beach!!! Naughty ones, of course ;) don't know if you had those in the US.:lol:
Welcome to our world Sandy :D

05-04-2009, 03:26 PM
See...I knew I did not have the terms right! Is it anologous?? they are next to each other? I get so confused...:lol:

05-04-2009, 05:27 PM
Colours that are side by side on the colour wheel are analogous, colours that are on opposite sides are complementary. :-)

Charlie's Mum
05-04-2009, 07:06 PM
There ya go Susan - I came back to answer and Kathy's done it for me :lol: :lol:

05-04-2009, 08:02 PM
was out shopping today and ya know just going thru the store Michaels Realy give me the itch to paint!!

05-04-2009, 09:07 PM
Hi Everyone.

When we were at the zoo on the weekend we were able to see the "White Buffalo" I thought that I would post a picture of this rare beast, and a link to the Lakota Legend of the White Buffalo Calf Woman for some inspiration. :)


and the link to the Legend (http://www.merceronline.com/Native/native05.htm)

As always the photo is available at my Flickr Account (http://www.flickr.com/photos/calliopesmusing/3502839910/?edited=1) for you to use as reference.

I have some other things to share with you -but right now it's bath time for the tiny terrorist! :)

05-04-2009, 11:55 PM
I would also be interested in thoughts on using creativity when beginning with photos of (in my case) various landscapes.....that is, ways to state personal ownership of a landscape rather than just trying to simulate the photo transferred to canvas.

I'm sure some of this is old hat to many of you. But then maybe too there are a few of us out there who could use the advice and counsel of all you "old brushers."

Charlie's Mum
05-05-2009, 08:51 AM
Quick reply Bob - have you tried playing with the landscape image in a photo programme?
You can do weird and wonderful things there, create special effects and end up with various ideas for a painting ....... definitely not an ordinary 'copy'!! :D

05-05-2009, 09:47 PM
OK kids! :D

Here are some Creativity Exercises for Tuesday Night... from Betsy Dillard Stroud

1) Place an assortment of found objects on your paper (paperclips, pasta, keys - what ever you can lay your hands on.) Then spray around them with diluted gesso (about the conistency of skim milk) let it dry. Use this as a surface for your painting.

2) Do a painting with 100 brushstrokes only.

3) Do a blind contour drawing of photograph, or a live subject. DON"T look at your paper and don't lift your pencil from the paper until you are done. then see what you have... use that as a basis for your next painting.

and finally

4) create a painting using only black, red and yellow.

Pick any of these exercises (or all of them!) and then let us see what you have created!

05-05-2009, 11:17 PM
Here is something else for you to watch - it's from this year's TED talks - and it's about creative genius and how there is a genius in all of us. Ole!


05-06-2009, 12:30 PM

I am sorry I have not chimed in yet. I just wanted to say that I really appreciate this thread. I am continually looking forward to reading what everyone writes. I have a list of projects that I am ever referring back to and trying to cross of the list. :) Thank you for hosting this class!!!

05-06-2009, 12:38 PM
you are very welcome Scott. I'm glad I could step in and help out. :)

05-06-2009, 12:57 PM
Hi everyone,

Been reading, not much else in the way of participating tho, I apologize.
I have a ta-do list too and hurrying as fast as I can but running out of time here.

I've actually done the third exercise, it's interesting, not recently however years ago, think it was suggested in Painting or Drawing from the Right Side the Brain, I forget the book's title sorry. Maybe I'll get to try the 4th today, that sounds interesting too.

Only thing I have to offer as far as getting the creative juices flowing for me anyway is I tend to turn toward the computer. I use Painter X software and there's nothing you can't do on it from serious painting and drawing to just messing around. The messing around part tends for me to open some doors.
I've gotten a few good ideas just letting the stylus move around with the brushes and other tools. Sometimes I'll try and duplicate them other times
it's just enough to turn my attention to literal painting, but will say it always leads me somewhere. I'd show ya but er still considered different kind of acrylics painting..:D

See ya later I hope,

05-06-2009, 01:45 PM
Nancie thanks!! it i s just a little guy a tiny bit bigger than an ATC. Did not mean to not answer you, but my life has been a bit hectic lately!

Thanks Maureen and Kathy! I understand the concept...just get the terminology wrong! Maybe the saying should be..."you can teach an old dog new tricks, just not the right words" ?? :)

Wow!! Kathy that is a great pic!!

Hey, sweet teach! I am not gonna be able to participate as much as I wanted to...but I will try. Between the hubby, the dogs, the manchild, and life in general...not sure when I will have time to breathe...:lol: Thanks again for filling in!! I like the idea of all the excercises...I hope to try them all, at some point!!

05-06-2009, 01:59 PM
Sue - do not worry. I do not feel "skipped over" - everyone on this web site is so friendly & helpful. And I know everyone is busy too, so much wonderful work I have seen!

Kathy - what a great photo from the zoo!

And the exercises, I didn't get to them last night. Might try 1 or 2 tonight. We had done #3 in school, I recall (how long ago that was, can't believe I can remember!) - and we did a variation on it also. For 10 minutes (timed) we studied our model. After that, it was eyes closed, pencil on paper & we sketched what we had studied. (we used a live model, but a still life or landscape would work also). Instructor coined it as "exercising your mind's eye" - we had very interesting results. I realize this is more drawing, but could be used as a base for a painting also.

I'm at the day job (& shouldn't be online, but don't tell!). I'll check in again later tonight.

And thanks again for this great thread!

05-06-2009, 04:58 PM
Hi All,

I just went back looking for where or if I mentioned Sue how cool I thought your dragon was.....ought oh..:o I didn't, but I will now..I think it's terrific!
Love how you embellished it with sparklies, you're so good at this. Sorry my friend I actually thought I had.

Well took a little break today and thought I'd try the #4 - paint with black, red, and yellow.
Hmmm nothing special but at least I tried it...lol Red doesn't photograph so well, looks kind of orange or maybe it's just these eyes of mine, such a switch from green..:lol:


Did use only three colors, and did mix a tiny bit of some in others.

Later then I hope..lol Back to green...:lol:

05-06-2009, 05:49 PM
Hi all! I've been lurking for a while (how many times have you heard that one?) and finally decided to speak up. I'm wanting to learn to paint with acrylics but until now, it's all been research. This thread has encouraged me to try some actual painting - even if it is just practices in creativity.

05-06-2009, 06:23 PM
Welcome Sandy! We are delighted to have you here - and I hope you do practice some exercises with us!

Elaine! What a wonderful painting (doesn't look orange to me!) Bravo!

05-06-2009, 06:35 PM

Here are a few more exercises :D (I have a million of them! LOL)

1) This is the one I'm doing....
Write on your canvas with a metallic or iridescent paint... then use that as the basis for your image - letting the writing show, or not, is your choice.

2) Use double compliments for a painting (ex blue and orange, red and green) see what kind of neutrals you can come up with when mixing.

3) Get the Blues. Think of something that makes you feel blue, and paint it... in blue!

OK - off to do homework (I'm such a mean mommy!)

05-07-2009, 01:26 AM
Wowser Elaine! Wonderful!

Sandy, nice to finally see the invisible lady! :) Come on in the water's fine!

I like #3 Kathy...I could do Bubba, one of the dogs....or so many, many other things...:lol:
Hopefully I will get a chance!!

05-07-2009, 10:04 AM
I hope you get a chance too Susan (((hugs)))

chammi kaiser
05-08-2009, 03:54 AM
Hi Kathy. Wonderful that you are handling this classroom. I have read through the lot and having just got back from a short holiday was feeling ugghhh! painting-wise. This gave me just the push I needed.

05-08-2009, 09:28 AM
That's great Chammi - we wouldn't want you to get stuck - your paintings are inspiration for us!

05-13-2009, 09:53 AM
Hi everyone? How are the creativity exercises working for you?

05-13-2009, 10:33 AM
I have been following and reading. Intend to do some of the exercises as soon as things calm down a bit. Right now I am madly painting trees... or just plain mad, as in loony.:D

05-13-2009, 11:33 AM
ROFL Patti...

I have a few more exercises to post today. :)

05-13-2009, 11:41 AM
Mid-week creativity exercises :)

1) Tear up and cut out black, white and gray subjects from magazines and newspapers. glue them onto a piece of mat board or illustration board. Then translate the collage into a colour painting using yellow and red and all the colours you can mix from them.

2) Create a landscape painting in silhouette.

3) Take an old painting that didn't work. Choose a subject that is unrelated to the original painting subject and draw or paint over it using both transparent and opaque layers (allowing some of the old painting to show through) you can use ink, paint, what ever makes you feel happy.

(I have a recent painting that really didn't work! so I'm going to try this one!)

Charlie's Mum
05-13-2009, 12:26 PM
Bless you Kathy!
I'm sorry I've been unable to participate - yet, ... but as the class is good for future reference, I will get around to it! :D
Been really poorly since Friday so just picking up on things again :D

05-13-2009, 12:35 PM
I haven't been so hot myself Maureen - but at least I'm vertical!

Charlie's Mum
05-13-2009, 04:23 PM
Even more kudos to you Kathy!
Hope you seen feel heaps better :D

I think Jocelyn may be starting her portraits class tomorrow - so you take time to get well :D

05-15-2009, 01:48 PM
Hi Everyone!

It's been a busy few weeks and I'm not finished my own exercises yet - but I'm really excited about how things are going!

I'll post some more stuff up here as we go - as long as people are still interested. let me know what you think.


05-15-2009, 06:26 PM
I'm interested... just still painting trees.:lol: How did I get myself into this anyway? I must say it makes me think, but I should stop thinking and paint more.:D

I hope everyone is feeling better soon.:heart:

05-15-2009, 08:17 PM
I am one of those disgusting folk who does not know what an artist block is - ideas come for me like with Saint Saen, 'like plucking apples off a tree"... so I thought to look in on this to see how the rest of you fare with this... some, it seems, really do not lack for ideas, just little interest in the ideas gotten... others just do not 'feel lit doing it', to which should be asked the question - "why do you want to do art or be an artist in the first place?"... still others, it seems to me, have the problem of going by emotional responding to particular scenes, without giving thought to why those scenes appeal - then finding that doing more of similar scenes tend to be of no further interest, implying that it wasn't actually the scene itself that was of interest but rather something about the scene, and if that 'something' could be grasped or understood, then progress would be made and further examples could be found to revive interest... some seem to believe that just the arrangements of colors make it, but then find a boredom in seeing or doing those same or similar color arrangements - recognizing a rut....

But it all boils back to that first question - why do you want to do art or be an artist - what is it that it means to you that you would want to keep at it time and again... or is it that you, in effect, have a one novel in you, and once it is down, that is really the end of it, however much you feel it ought to be otherwise... makes a difference in how you approach this 'lack of creativity' problem... to give a personal example of this, only once in awhile could I do a political cartoon - never, NEVER, could I do them like political cartoonists do, day after day, over years... perhaps your art ideas follow a similar? food for thought...

but I ramble...

05-16-2009, 05:09 PM
hmmm - would had thought a comment of some sort be by now...:eek:
[even if this is on an 'older' thread]

05-16-2009, 05:51 PM
I'm not sure what kind of response you are looking for Robert.:confused:

it seems to me upon first and second reading of your post that you think that people who occasionally look for inspiration or a new technique or creative approach are not real artists (or at least not thoughtful artists).... so that would mean that you dissed everyone who participated in this thread.

if that wasn't your intention then maybe a little clarity would help.

If it was your intention then I'm not surprised that there is no response.

either way this classroom was meant as a workshop to encourage each other, to try out new ideas and hopefully inspire, and I don't know any artist who doesn't appreciate encouragement and a boost of inspiration. :)

05-16-2009, 09:09 PM
Well, it certainly wasn't the intent, tho on looking it over again can see where some might consider it as such if reflecting on whatever it is that ones does is taken as an affront instead of just accepted as a given... by all means, encouragement is desired, especially if seeking to overcome difficulties - but at the same time, it seems more effective if there was more in the way of goal direction as some have but so many seem to lack and even consider the lacking as to be desired, in spite of the fact that having defined goals aid much in inducing creativity... going on a journey is great, but one should have directions in mind rather than wandering aimlessly - and if one does not know where one wants to go, it should be noted and explored as that too has a bearing on creativity....

But - it is true I do approach art differently than most others seem to, and it leads to wondering why - an issue of trying to understand and not as such of criticizing...