Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Senior Thesis: A Weekly Update

If you find yourself lacking a little inspiration (*cough *cough... senior art majors), I have some tips that might help you expand the boundaries of your imagination box.  

1. If you don't already, start carrying a sketchbook/notebook/journaling device around with you everywhere you go. Emphasis on everywhere... There is no way I can really explain the benefits of doing this, except that it is like having a visual conversation with yourself. It becomes easier to decide which ideas don't make a lick of sense between the ideas that are actually worth something or may lead you to something more awesome. And trust me, for some reason you always forget the more awesome ideas so write them down while you can!

If you are not as artistically gifted as you would like to be or can never keep up with a notebook, you can cheat and use your camera phone to take pictures of inspiring things (I do it all the time). 

For me a mini notebook was more convenient and fun for
compiling my thoughts for fall Senior Thesis. 
2. To build upon #1, just accept that for every good idea, you will have to go through 20 terrible ideas. So get over the fact that your sketchbook may be full of ugly sketches, don't erase them (If you're like me, you may just have to resort to using permanent marker). You never know what is going spark your imagination later on down the road. Just don't forget to revisit... just think of it as research.  
A few of my many doodles and notes. 

3. Read the book "Steal Like an Artist" by Austin Kleon. It is a book every art student/artist should have.  If you would like to borrow my copy, hunt me down and I'll gladly share. :)
This book is a New York Times Bestseller for a reason.
It is the best combination of artistic inspiration and general life advice.

4. Share ideas with somebody, anybody... It doesn't have to be an artist or professor, although those kinds of people are the best kinds to get advice from. If you're not a people person, start a blog or connect on Pinterest or Tumblr. 
Just 2 of the 2,239 items I have pinned on Pinterest.

5. If you're on a time crunch for inspiration, or you still are having trouble, set some wild restrictions on yourself. If you're anything like me, you may not do well with total unlimited power and possibilities. Try some blind contour drawing, some fast 60 second portraits, using a medium you have never used before, collaborating with some friends on a exquisite corpse sketch, listen to a song and create something visual from it, try to recreate an image several times using different mediums, create a new invention by combining existing inventions, enter a local art contest, and another easy way to get inspiration is to visit nearby exhibits and shows.

Whip out that ol' dusty sketchbook of yours and give it a good scribbling.  Doesn't matter whether it's cool stuff or bad stuff... stop thinking and just start making! 

Hope you're inspired :)
-Maddy Fritz


Earl Grey said...

Thanks for the thoughts — spring seniors, what are you waiting for?

Jeanette Tesmer said...

I would just like to say that I would like a copy of the unicorn eating the skull party hat!

K. said...

Sometimes graffiti artists will publish their sketchbooks or a group of them will come together to publish. Those are great examples to browse through as well if you can find them. I once found a few in B&N. I'd also suggest just spending the afternoon there to browse through them because they are cRaZy expensive but super awesome to look at.