Need a little jolt of artistic inspiration? Then take a look at these ideas – and challenge yourself to start making marvelous and magnificent art today.
- Search the Web and Google Images for historical and contemporary fashion styles. Study color combinations, patterns, fabric textures and costume style. Attempt to incorporate some of the ideas you find into your own mixed-media art projects. The Fashion-Era site contains 885 content rich, illustrated pages of Fashion History, Costume History, Clothing, Fashions and Social History.
- Check out Style and Design blogs to keep up with the newest trends, leading edge ideas and upcoming fashions and interior design. These trends usually eventually trickle down to the art world. As you study these different styles and designs, try to adapt them to your own art work.
- Take a trip to the downtown area of your nearest city. Study the architecture of historical buildings – and make some quick sketches or take photographs. No time for a trip downtown? Check out books on architecture in your town library – or your own personal library. Pay attention to the shapes, forms and decorative details of the buildings. Can you make an assemblage art piece based on the buildings that you admire?
- Poke around in Flea Markets and Thrift Shops looking for vintage fabrics, old photographs, retro jewelry, metal findings, unique china, old board games, puzzles and ephemera. Later, decide how you can incorporate these finds into a new art piece.
- The next time that you reach for your breakfast cereal, check out the packaging design on the box. Seriously, you can learn a lot from studying the package design on the food products, or other items, that you purchase. Rummage through your refrigerator or cupboards and see what ideas you can come up with. Create a collage with the designs that call your name.
- Traveling to new destinations can jumpstart your creative juices. Plan a day trip, a long weekend or a vacation if you can fit it in. Tourist spots near your home can offer inspiration if you visit them as if you were seeing the attractions for the first time. For example, I live near Colonial Williamsburg. Simply walking around the manicured grounds helps me gain new insights and a heightened sense of awareness. Revisiting areas that you haven’t been to in years may offer you a fresh perspective too. Snap some photos, purchase a bunch of local area postcards for later review - or make a few quick sketches. These tactics may help fuel some innovative artistic ideas for your next art studio session.
- Vintage children’s picture books are often filled with amazing visual art that can inspire your own work. Do study the illustrations but also check out unusual typography; use of color and fonts. Find these old books at used book stores, thrift shops, antique stores, your local library, Google Books or online stores (e.g., Abe Books). I especially like collecting children’s picture books from the 1920's and 1930's.
Make sure you capture all of the inspiring sources that you do find during these exercises in your Art Journal, sketchbook, hard drive or on Pinterest. Then begin to create inspiring art today.