If you’ve ever stared at a blank page and wondered where creative types get their ideas from then you’re not alone – the SEVEN collective have too!
What artists like Picasso do
When renowned photographer Brassaï asked Picasso whether his ideas came to him “by chance or by design,” he said:
To know what you’re going to draw, you have to begin drawing…
The really good ideas, he said, came once he got started.
Easy for him to say, right? Just ‘begin’! Blah!
But there are ways and means to get beginning. Techniques used by creatives – from the Surrealists to David Bowie – to bypass doubt. Simple exercises which propel the blank, blocked or bewildered mind into creative exploration.
And, we’re sharing some of SEVEN’s fave methods, or processes, below. (Want to grab our downloadable worksheets right now!? Simply scroll to the end of the post.)
What inspired the SEVEN Collective
Now, we can’t claim to have got the idea of meeting up, using tried and tested artistic techniques as creative launchpads, and sharing the results in a supportive environment.
There, we found the permission to ‘just have a go’ without judgement or criticism.
For some of us our journals, or sketchbooks, were an adjunct to an already established art practice. For others the workshops marked a return to self expression left unexplored since art college or even school. But it worked for all of us.
So much so, some felt compelled to continue – et voila, the SEVEN collective was born!
The techniques we use to ignite ideas
We all took a shine to a particular method for our own very personal reasons:
- Love drawing? – how about one minute sketches? Or ‘blind’ drawing?!
- Think you can’t draw for toffee? – perhaps tracing and layering random images or using stencils could be for you?
- Want to start somewhere else entirely? – try a word soup (aka Dada poetry) or make threads of thought. Or maybe use a good old map to get the juices flowing.
Use a process to get you started
Our fave creative processes are listed here. Each SEVEN collective member created a worksheet which details how it works and why they love it.
Simply download the ones which catch your eye and have a go. We recommend you try all of them. You never know what’ll wind up capturing your imagination – like Amanda’s swimmers, but that’s another story…
Now it’s your turn to explore:
- One Minute Sketches – Helen’s pick
- Dada Poetry – Kerry’s pick
- Blind Drawing – Amanda’s pick
- Threads of Thought– Jo’s pick
- Abstraction Geometry – Juliet’s pick
- Mapping Personal Geographies – Kim’s pick
- Assemblage Drawing – Nicola’s pick
PS We’d love to see what you create. If you feel inclined to, please share the results with us using #sevenartistsuk on Instagram or Twitter.
PPS These worksheets are for you to download for your personal use and are not meant for public reproduction.