Archive for the ‘Artist Development’ Category

Exercises in Creativity #6

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2008

Creativity is often more about the process than any specific result, or an orientation towards new ways of approaching things if you will. While we may start out intending to achieve something in particular, the lessons we learn along the way have the power to transform our whole way of thinking and subsequently being. When we seek out creativity, we open ourselves up to a multiplicity of new ideas and experiences.

This post is not particularly a specific Free Idea Factory idea, but rather a gateway to perhaps producing some new Free Idea Factory ideas and finding appropriate applications for them.

While doing some online research, I came across a great collection of Free Creative Thinking Tools, compiled by Chuck Frey of The list of links to these tools can be found here.They are free and include downloadable text-based tools and web-based creativity tools.

An example of one of the tools listed is Jump Start. This online tool, provided by Idea Champions, first asks you to state your problem or challenge. Next, it generates a list of random adjectives, and inserts them into questions to help you to generate fresh ideas and insights (example: “What insights or ideas about my challenge do I get from the word ‘unbreakable?’”). Next, Jump Start asks you to record the underlying principle that is embodied in your favorite idea from the previous step. It also asks you to record any new, actionable ideas are sparked by this underlying principle. Finally, this online tool asks you to enter the subject, e-mail address and name of someone to whom you’d like to send your new idea — someone whose support and collaboration you need to help make the idea a reality.

artists’ trading cards

Wednesday, July 30th, 2008

i know these already exist, i’ve heard of them but have never been part of any group that has exchanged them. the idea is to make cards, much like baseball or hockey cards, except for poetry or other art forms and then trade them. i’d love to give out and receive them. any links to such would be very welcome or if you do them already.

A Progressive/ Collaborative Literary Work

Sunday, July 20th, 2008

Forgive me if this is an existing mode of writing that I am unfamiliar with.

A Progressive/ Collaborative Literary Work would be developed by a group of writers. A subject would be agreed upon (or it could be looser depending on the intended outcome) and then the participants established. The first person would begin the work. Perhaps each person could write a chapter of a book for example.

After the worked was deemed complete (the last person added their part), the first person would make edits, then sequentially each contributor would make edits. The process could be repeated or changed as desired until the group agreed that the work was ready to be considered for publishing.

I think some key factors to the project’s success would be:

-Choose the group carefully (make sure you can work well with the group members and admire the quality of their work)
-Establish and stick to deadlines
-It will be what it will, you can’t control the outcome, it may take a while to get a rhythm going between the group members

Art capsule

Monday, July 14th, 2008

I am in the process of moving back to England from Scotland, and have a yearning to hide an `art capsule` somewhere in the old house.  A few examples of original art and writings buried under the floor or hidden in a wall space.  Now, with hindsight, I wish I had done this everywhere I have ever lived.  A secret trail for future arteologists.

Excercises in Creativity #5

Friday, July 11th, 2008

Some Creative prompts from which to work in any creative endeavor that interests you:

-Is free really free?
-do the opposite of what you want to do
-make something that would appeal to a conservative older woman
-examine your thoughts about formally presenting artwork
-the letter “Q”
-6 variations of a human hand
-’I-centrism’ present in Western Culture

Exercises in Creativity #4

Thursday, May 29th, 2008

Work in your least favorite medium for two weeks, no matter how annoying it may be initially. Again, disequilibrium allows for increased learning and growth, see Exercises in Creativity #1.

-If you paint, take up sculpting
-If you write childrens stories, dive into sociological research
-If you are an actor, take on a character you despise or are indifferent towards
-If you aren’t anything (everyone is something, don’t worry, you can figure it out), consider involving yourself in a creative endeavor, who knows what you’ll discover along the way.

Look Up!

Thursday, May 29th, 2008

Go out side right now, look up, and draw! You see so many things that you could possibly draw when you just look up into the sky! From buildings to trees the possibilities are endless! I say Draw and Enjoy!

Mail as a means of artistic collaboration

Wednesday, May 21st, 2008

start a poem or story or doodle what have you and mail it to buddy a. buddy a will add a bit and pass it to buddy b and so on. could be just two people or more…

a variation of this is to play the surrealist exquisite corpse game thru the mail…via postcards or letters.

i love the idea of mail art.

Excercises in Creativity #3

Tuesday, May 20th, 2008

Take something that you really value, that you personally have made (a poem, a painting, a sculpture, what ever…) and break it. Discard it and don’t look back. You can always remake something (though you will need to learn to become comfortable with it being slightly different (for better or worse).

Often times I have found that clinging on to ‘a masterpiece’ (and most of the time it’s really not, though it may be a personal triumph, which is surely nothing to discount) inhibits you from producing 10 new things of which 4 might be to your liking. And maybe 2 are of equal or greater merit than the first object you parted with. That’s a 50% increase in masterpieces!

When we hold onto past ideas too tightly, it may very well inhibit us from coming up with new ones. Creativity involves a need to develop. Being creative involves an element of never being completely satisfied. That’s not to say that the process won’t be rewarding though. Nothing is ever really done in my opinion as far as art goes. But it can be developed enough to share with others. When that’s the case, finish out the body of work or move on to the next idea.

This idea was born out of experiences I had with Skip Sensbach of Green Dog Pottery in Dallas, Pa. He was the one who introduced me to breaking pots, sculptures, and a host of other things I liked. My favorite piece that I broke was a 2 foot tall wine cask that was shaped like a womans leg with fishnet stockings.

To reduce the wasteful element of breaking something of value (which I’m personally OK with because of what it may yield) you can give away the object as well. Or you can break it and reuse those broken pieces to make something even cooler if your up for the challenge.

Exercises in Creativity #2

Sunday, May 18th, 2008

Of what use is it to apply the same thinking to creative problems all of the time?

Think of a creative problem you have been trying to solve for a while. Write it out and formalize a strategy. Then allow a friend, colleague, or someone you respect with knowledge about the subject to interpret the problem for themselves. Don’t tell them what your plan of attack was. Then, with their permission of course, implement their strategy instead of yours, despite your initial feelings about it.

Operating in unfamiliar territory can certainly be uncomfortable, but it can also produce great results in terms of creative development. And collaborating and dialogging with creatively oriented people and groups can certainly open you up to a whole new world of possibilities.

“Problems cannot be solved by the same level of thinking that created them.”
- Albert Einstein