The Blank Page Syndrome
I had hit the "blank page" syndrome. You've been there, whether it is drawing something or it is writing something. I honestly feel this almost every day.
The scary blank page offers too many possibilities, so many that none come to mind. Too many ideas, especially to commit to only one idea and mess it up, that would waste my time and my limited precious paper. (This is fear speaking BTW)
A blank page is a real dilemma!
TOOLBOX OF IDEAS
I have a toolbox of strategies that help me to come up with ideas.
#1 - LIMITATIONS
If you set limits or rules on what you are going to draw, your imagination will kick in and you will find many creative ideas. Here are some ideas for limitations:
You must work in only blue or,
Paint a night scene, or
Draw something that can fly, or
Draw using only dots...and so on...
Themes: Underwater, African Savanna, Family, At the Park, Outer Space, etc...
Many times you will have natural limitations, like drawing with only a paper and pencil. Or if your drawing hand is hurt. Or your child/sibling is going to "help" you draw. These are all GOOD challenges.
I suggest you watch this TED talk artist Phil Hansen gives regarding Limitations.
This is my favorite strategy. It allows my creativity to work miracles.
#2 - DRAW WHAT IS IN FRONT OF YOU
It is about as simple as that.
Draw what is front of you.
That box of cereal, fork, cell phone, brothers' shoes, and book ALL look so much more iconic and cool when they are drawn.
At church, I could have drawn my shoes, the speaker at the pulpit, the pulpit, a purse, and there were many facial profiles I could have found.
I always have my hand with me. (I can just draw my hand, foot or ring.)
You can always start with these juicy strawberries right below.
Photo by Jessica Lewis from Pexels https://www.pexels.com/photo/berry-delicious-food-fruit-583840/
#3 - REFERENCE PHOTOS
Use a reference photo.
A reference photo is a photograph or image on the computer or device that you look at to help you draw what you want to draw.
Some great places you could go to for some great images are:
Photos you take around your house or on vacation.
Public domain images from Pixabay or Pexels and, of course, there is always, Pinterest like the reference photo on the above is from Pexels.com. Simple and delicious!
#4 - BUDDY UP - Draw with a friend or sibling
There are many ways you can draw with another person, but here are 2 ways:
a. The "Scribble N' Pass"- Have your buddy draw only a few lines or swirly scribbles on a piece of paper and pass it to you. (You do the same for them.) You will look at the scribbles and try to find the beginnings (or an idea) of a picture you can draw using those scribbles. I often find face profiles, bears, and genie lamps. What can you make out of those scribbles?
b. Duo Character Creation - You draw the head shape, then pass it to your buddy, they draw the eyes, then they pass it to you, you draw the nose, etc... You can do this with animals, people or even cities.
#5 - INTENTIONAL LEARNING
Let's say you know exactly what you want to learn. Whether it is faces, animals, flowers, cityscapes, watercolors or ink, you will scour the internet for tutorials, classes, and courses.
If you are intentional and regular in your learning, and CLEAR about what you want to learn, you will accelerate your learning and get to your goal quickly.
It is often times the IDEAS of what to draw that is holding us back.
If you are focusing in on learning how to draw the facial profile, then it is a matter of getting a picture or someone to sit still long enough for you to draw them.
WHAT TO DRAW
Use the 5 strategies above when you don't know what to draw, you WILL find a solution. Limitations are my favorite when I want a creative outcome. Reference photos, drawing what is in front of you, and intentional learning are my favorites when I want a quick, defined idea. Of course, drawing with a buddy will be extremely rewarding and fun!
What are you going to draw? Leave me a message in the comments what you plan on drawing.