Monday, April 11, 2016

Seven Creative Activities that Anyone Can Do!

 Drawing


From my experience, almost everyone I have met drew pictures as children. We all did. It’s a relatively inexpensive hobby that can be a lot of fun, time filling, and very creative! If you are interested in fine arts, especially painting, honing your drawing skills is a great way to prepare for the more challenging task of creating a painting. In painting not only are you concerned with the ideas of line, shape, shading and perspective (you practice these in drawing), but also color, tone, value, and texture.

What You Need:

Basic Set of Drawing Pencils
Pink Eraser
Drawing Paper


There are many videos to be found on Youtube for free that show you how to draw various things, find something that you like and start sketching! I recommend watching a few videos on the topic of “Perspective” to get started.

Here is short YouTube video that I created near Christmas (hence the music) of an easy drawing of some lakeside pine trees that you can create yourself. The image is not overtly Christmas themed, and will be a great place to start for you to practice!


Winter Pines Drawing Video



Winter Pines. Charcoal Vine on Paper. Artist Charles Wolf. Impulsive Artistry © 2015. 
Impulsive Artistry Blog Productions. All Rights Reserved.  


Here are some a links to Amazon where you can purchase a great set of drawing pencils, pink erasers, and a quality drawing pad:




Coloring



There has been an advent of coloring books for adults in the past few years (of course kids and teens can do it too as always), but it’s a fad that I can really get behind as a creative person. There are many benefits to coloring, which can also be applied equally to the other creative activities listed here.

What are these benefits? Coloring promotes relaxation, reduces stress and anxiety, improves you mental state overall, and can make your day a little brighter. It’s a highly creative activity, while providing the structure of the image already, enables you to freely explore color and be yourself! It can be a great collaborative endeavor with your kids or spouse. Finally, coloring improves you fine motor skills (just like drawing, painting, or playing a musical instrument) and can increase your ability to focus.     

What you need:

Color Pencils or Crayons
Coloring Book for Adults

Here is a link to where you can purchase these on Amazon:




Painting



As those of you who regularly read this blog know, this is one of my personal favorites creative endeavors to pursue. Painting brings a lot of joy to my life, and I know that it also has all of the same benefits as coloring. There is a great deal of satisfaction that can be had when you complete a new painting, each one presents a unique challenge, but are very rewarding in the end.  

Anyone can learn to paint! It may take time, patience, and practice, just like any new skill, but its completely worth the effort in my opinion. Again, there are so many great videos to be found on YouTube for free, find one that you think that you could do and give it a try today! I recommend starting with Acrylic paints for a number of reasons; acrylics are the cheapest option, and they are easy to use, easy to clean up (just use water), have a fast drying time, and do not have a strong smell.

Here is a link to another article that I wrote dedicated to this topic, and it includes a very basic painting “Autumn Field” with step-by-step instructions that you can learn to paint yourself:

Learn to Paint an Autumn Field Link 

You can find all of my painting videos at my YouTube channel here:



Photography



This is perhaps the easiest creative hobby to get into, and with the explosion of social media and the power of the Internet, you can share you photographs with the world in a matter of seconds (as I am sure that many of you already do).

 I was born in the early 90s, and remember, having to go to the store to get your film developed. Great cameras were expensive, and seem to pale by today’s standards. If you have android or iPhone you already have a wonderful camera to start with that can take professional looking photos, at least by 90’s standards. I use my android to take most of my pictures, and then using the software that I have on my computer, I am able to filter them to improve their look even more!

I can then share them on Twitter, Google+, Facebook, or Impulsive Artistry Blog… you get the idea. Social media sites like Instagram are amazing, because they already have the filters setup for you. Just snap the photo, select the picture you want, pick a filter and in under a minute you can share it with the world - so easy!   

Here is a link to the Instagram extension of this blog where you can view my photographic work—Yes, there are photos here that you will not have seen on the blog:

My Instagram Page Link

Here are a few links to several Photographic Essays that I created for this blog:


The most recent Featured Guest Artist on this blog was a young emerging photographer, Julia R., and you see her beautiful work in her article that she wrote:



Writing

Writing can be a great way to be more creative in your life. I write new articles every week for my blog, and I enjoy the process of coming up for with new content to think and write about. I often find that learn more of what I think about a topic when I write a new article. Of course, creative writing falls into this category, and when I was sixteen I wrote a two-hundred page fantasy book that was, to be honest, a bit clichéd, but I had a lot of fun doing it. The point is anyone can write a book, a short story, an article, some poetry, or even begin a blog – it just takes dedication, a bit of practice, and away you go!

If you are looking for some creative ideas to help get you started, I highly recommend the engaging and inspiring book “The 3A.M. Epiphany” by Brian Kiteley and published by Writer’s Digest Books, Cincinnati, Ohio, © 2005. It contains unique writing prompts to get your creativity flowing and will help you think about creative writing in a new light!  

Here is link on Amazon where you can purchase this book:


Play a Musical Instrument/Write Music



I started playing the piano when I was eleven, and have loved it ever since! When I was seven, my Mom tried to teach me how to play, but I didn’t get it, and I found it to be too hard at the time. As you might have guessed from knowing how kids are, when my best friend at the time began taking lessons, I wanted to learn also! He took lessons for only a year, and I went on to major in music… you never know what you will be passionate about.

Out of all the activities that I have discussed in this article, I think that learning an instrument, particularly the piano, requires the most guidance. There are many self-taught musicians that are really talented, but a general rule, most people learn fastest when being overseen by an instructor.

I actually recommend taking a class in any of these aforementioned activities or getting a private teacher, especially if you desire to become really proficient, as you will progress much faster than trying to learn solely on your own. With the advent of the Internet, there are so many things that you can use to supplement your learning experience!  

Creativity can be expressed in a number of ways on an instrument, through personal expression in how you perform the notes, improvisation, and in composition, of course. If you are interested in learning more about music, start with learning how to read the notes in this easy to follow five-part article series:

How to Read Music Link

You can also read my latest article series about the “Fundamental Topics in Music” here, in preparation to writing your own music:



Sculpting (Polymer Clay)



Of all the creative activities that I have engaged in over time, I have the least amount of experience in this particular project; however, back in November, one the first Guest Artist Features on this blog was written by the very creative, excellent polymer clay artist, Chantal Noordeloos. In her article, not only will you get to see some of her amazing work, read her very funny and engaging writing, but also learn how to start working with Polymer Clay with some helpful tips to get you started!




Final Thoughts

There you have it, seven creative activities that anyone can do! These are just the tip of the iceberg, and there are many other artistic projects to explore, such as woodworking, quilting, sowing, mixed media, printmaking and more! I sincerely hope that you will take a little time this next week and try one of these very engaging and fun activities, either by yourself or with your family! Go out there and be creative today!!!

—Charles    



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