Tools of the Trade No2 – Art Journals & Mood Books

Where does the inspiration come from for a painting?

A good question. Occasionally i have the urge to create something but i’m not sure what to paint – so i might decide to paint something easy such as simple flowers in a vase . But you can guarantee it won’t work out! The energy just isn’t right and the right energy is important because – somehow – it transfers itself to the canvas.

True inspiration can come from anywhere, anytime. A picture in a magazine, something seen from the car window, a combination of colours someone is wearing – and of course nature, which provides inspiration in abundance.

Collecting Ideas

Sketchbooks help to capture ideas but I also have other tools which work on a different level. These are my art journals and my art mood book. My art journals are personal places where i write about all sorts of things, including what i’m grateful for, worried about, struggling with plus my hopes and dreams. I use colour and images to help me express these things. I often find that inspiration for paintings, sometimes abstract, emerges from this reflective process.

Arty Scrapbook

My Art Mood Book is like an arty scrap book culled from magazines and books. It includes photos of things that i think would make a good compositon, and colour combinations that would make a beautiful palette for a painting. These photos are seldom copied in any way (copyright for a start) but they do inspire ideas that can turn into paintings of a different subject altogether!

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