Marta Dahlig Expand Your Creativity
You simply cannot overestimate the role that creativity plays in every artist’s life. After all, it’s our ability to generate original ideas that determines our style, and thus our artistic identity. We all know how amazing it feels when we’re soaring on the wings of inspiration – and how frustrating it is to lose that spark, left to wallow in the misery of artistic block.

The main purpose of this workshop is to let you in on a trusty exercise that I do whenever I need to boost my creativity or overcome an artistic frustration. The exercise is simple: based on a stock photograph, I sketch three original, distinctive ideas, not taking more than 
10 minutes per sketch.
While the first part of the workshop (in issue 31 – turn to page 91 to get your hands on a copy) covered the use of an environmental stock photo, this part is devoted to placing an object within a painting, making it the centre of your creative attention. I find this exercise does wonders, even if only done occasionally, but the best results come from daily practice. Remember to save your sketches, as they might come in useful later, particularly when you are searching for a subject to become a full-blown painting.

While a lot of this might seem theoretical, I’ll also be sharing some practical tips concerning the technical execution of particular elements. To get the best out of the workshop, it’s a good idea to own an advanced painting program such as Photoshop or Painter (demos are available on the DVD), and 
to work with a tablet. The stock photo shown in the early steps of the workshop can be found on the DVD, too.