Creativity Workshop: Hide and Seek

Limbo (acrylic on paper, 22×30) by Chica Brunsvold

How do you define creativity? I like to think that it’s the ability to make something out of nothing. That’s why I’ve abandoned using the outside world for painting material and have focused strictly on subjects that my own works reveal to me. For years, I painted representational landscapes, florals, portraits and still lifes, relying solely on my perception of my subjects to guide my brush. My watercolors and acrylics looked pretty much the same as almost every other artist’s work, which was OK, but I wanted my paintings to look like mine alone—not someone else’s. That’s when I began studying my own paintings and searching for hidden images within them. A whole new world of subjects emerged.

Try It!

Bring true originality and spunk to your work by repainting a completed painting, or by adopting a spontaneous, non-objective approach with a new painting. Rather than looking to the outside world for subjects, let images emerge from within the painting. And rather than worrying about how your work will be perceived, take this opportunity to paint exactly what you want. View your paintings from a variety of angles and in a variety of settings to urge the process along.

Get together with your painting group, or complete the Creativity Workshop Activity on your own. Send a JPEG (with a resolution of 72 dpi) of your painting to with Creativity Workshop in the subject line. Or mail a slide, photo or disc to Watercolor Artist, Creativity Workshop, 4700 E. Galbraith Road, Cincinnati, OH 45236. We’ll publish entries on our website, and one entrant will receive $100 worth of North Light art books. Browse North Light’s selection at The deadline for entry is February 20, 2009. To see more Creativity Workshop Activities and a gallery of reader responses, click here.

You may also like these articles: