Starting is No Longer the Hardest Part!
I’m out of practice in the studio. All fall and to start of winter I was off my regular schedule — traveling, working, getting ready for the holidays, catching up with friends, eating well but not holding myself to any kind of art regimen.
If that wall of time has built up for you, too, and you aren’t quite sure how to get into the swing of painting or drawing after an extended hiatus, take my recommendation and start with some abstract painting prompts.
Why Abstract Painting?
Do you remember when you were little and you went back to school after a summer of doing as few school-related activities as possible? I always remember how weird it felt to hold a pencil again. And my penmanship? Horrible on that first day. Like I was all thumbs! It can be the same in your sketchbook or on your canvas.
You feel unconnected and awkward making marks because you are out of practice. With abstract painting, that’s OK. It can even be a plus. Marks will vary and be unexpected. Let them! Start abstractly, get your rhythm and take it anywhere!
6 Abstract Art Prompts to Jump Start Your Creativity
- Connect 7 dots. Literally, dot your surface seven times and get started connecting them with pattern and texture, color and any kind of mark that comes out of you. All are welcome.
- Use your non-dominant hand to start. This way you know that you will get some unanticipated marks. You can always switch back once you feel like you’ve got some inspiration flowing.
- Alter your surface. Crumple your paper. Smear it with a wash. Flick paint at it. Put something unique down first and it might adjust your vision so that you work in a different way.
- Only one color. Now you really have to work on texture and forms to get creative.
- Only one tool. That means one brush. And remember a brush has one traditional way of being used but several nontraditional ways of being used.
- Close your eyes. Or blindfold yourself. If you are at home, no one will see you. You get to start fresh and see with your mind’s eye. Surprisingly enough it will likely set your hand free.
Prompts, Projects, Inspiration and Fun
Splatter, stamp, scrape, repeat. Follow along with Jodi for a quick-start guide for beautifully layered and textured abstract painting and drawing! While there are many approaches to painting abstract art, Jodi Ohl‘s philosophy is to simply start.
In this video instruction, the successful, self-taught artist helps you dive in with an open mind and fearless heart. Everything in this resource kick-starts your creativity. Check out the trailer for this video below, and enjoy!
You can also stream Ohl’s Texture Techniques for Abstract Art: 15 Lessons here.