There are days when you sit and stare out the window, waiting and waiting….for inspiration. Hoping  for some fascinating subject to leap in front of you that says Paint Me! You may begin to read an art magazine.

looking for inspiration

You wonder what to paint. Nothing sounds that interesting.  Does this sound a little familiar to anyone?


So, my approach is to not look for the great and the wonderful. But the ordinary. The common basic shapes and objects and then ‘tinker’ with them.

This serves a few purposes. One,  it relaxes you from the stress of having to perform and “produce”.  Two, it provokes you to at least pick up and use the art materials for even a short period of time. Every day art is a great way to develop creativity skills.  Three,  it releases you from thinking its going to be an all consuming, all day process. It can be a mere 2 minute fast sketch; 30 seconds to identify which colours to use on a specific object; even  doing a coloured ‘stick man’ !    It is art, it is creative, and it does help build skills.

One of my own favourites is to use a circle and tinker with it until it  becomes a springboard for an art image. There is a lot you can do with a circle! A very useful circle shape would be a flower or perhaps,  a roll of masking tape as these are always on hand.  The circle is such an easy shape to work with and can be divided, added to, cut into, textured, hung on wire… like I said, the idea is to get your imagination going. Your imagination will help jump start your inspiration, which in turn gets your motivation up and running.

blue vase from above
blue vase peering in


You can use any shape, form, idea whatsoever for your inspiration. Whatever works for you. Circles just seem to work really well with a lot of people.   Once you get into the swing of it you’ll come up with your own methods that work even better for you!

Here are some samples of the ‘circle’  approach:

inside flower


The macro zoom  of the  inside of this flower has 3 lovely layers of circles










circular keys
circular keys


circles  in  blue ink and gouache,  connecting the shapes for harmony
















Zen style,   ENSO a relaxing one single contemplative brush stroke in a flowing circular form

Enso is a fascinating art well worth looking up & trying. Beneficial in teaching a mastery of less is more.









gouache scissors
gouache scissors



a pair of scissors lying next to my roll of tape,  served as my muse this painting day

gouache and watercolour on 100% cotton cold press paper