“Imagination is your preview of life’s coming attractions.”~ Albert Einstein
The imagination is used in every aspect of life from preparing a meal, a party or a wardrobe to designing a kitchen, a garden or a business card. It is active in every type of problem solving.
Einstein’s quote defines the career of a contractor; the ideas of the designer and client combine to become a reality. I solve visual dilemmas for my clients- whether it’s making an interior more attractive, drawing attention to an establishment or masking something in a creative way- imagination is the key to successful results.
Initially, today’s blog was about cartoon illustration and it naturally morphed to the topic of inspiration. Once the first example began to develop- it became clear that this needed to be done in three parts. So I hope you will join me on this journey examining my creative process in designing murals.
When it comes to creating a custom design there are 3 main sources I use to get ideas started:
- ART HISTORY
During my childhood in New York, my parents would take us to visit the Brooklyn Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and other great collections of art in the city. This gave me an appreciation for art through the ages that has been a constant source of inspiration for both my fine and commercial artwork.
For instance- Shane, the proprietor of Mothercluckers Restaurant, wanted an exterior mural to cover the boards on the abandoned building next door. When we began discussing the image- Shane stated, “I was thinking of chickens eating.” I laughed because immediately I had envisioned chickens substituting the people in Renoir’s Luncheon of the Boating Party. There was a framed copy of this popular piece that decorated my first few apartments, so I was very familiar with the composition. This idea fit the theme of the chicken restaurant, suited the French history of New Orleans, and the colorful mural livened up a blighted structure.
Usually the magic requires a bit of research- I still use my art history books from college and have added to my library over the years. Of course, with Google images research is a breeze. There are so many different ways to look at art- for the composition (like the Mothercluckers mural), the color, a particular item in the piece, or the way the paint is applied.
Fine art can be used:
- to find a color scheme for a room.
- to get ideas for costuming.
- to get textures for decorative painting techniques.
- to share ideas with others.
Its interesting how new ideas are formed and I would love to see comments or links to blogs describing your “ah-ha!” moments. Please read about my second source of inspiration on Thursday.