This whole semester I've had a bit of an obsession with Salvador Dali. I've used him as inspiration on countless projects, work assignments, and in conversations in other parts of my life. It wasn't until recently, while browsing through Fuck Yeah Art History's Tumblr blog that I came across Remedios Varo, a female surrealist, whose work i found equally as interesting as Dali's although I had never heard mention of her name before. This finding sent me on a whole new streak of reading about female surrealists. Among them, Valentine Hugo, Kay Sage, Dorothea Tanning, and Meret Oppenheim.
From Oppenheim, my search led me to Surrealist techniques, which whether you claim to be a surrealist or not, can certainly be useful in sparking creativity. Most methods are more enjoyable than sitting in front of a blank sketchbook or searching for images on Google. Just a few of the techniques:
- Aerography- Technique where a 3-D object is used as a spraypaint stencil
- Bulletism- Shooting ink at a piece of paper and developing images based off of what is seen.
- Coulage- Sculpture created by pouring wax or something else molten into cold water and letting it create forms.
- Decalcomania- Pouring thick paint on a canvas, placing objects in the paint, and taking the objects out jusst before it dries to create the foundation for the painting.
- Entopic graphomania- Drawing created from making dots at points of impurity on a blank sheet of paper, and connecting the dots with lines.
- Latent news- Game where a newspaper article is cut into individual words and reassembled.
- Paranoiac-critical method- Probably the most involved, Salvador Dali's method involves creating in yourself a state of paranoia at the world around you and the possibility that you are being manipulated, targeted, or controlled by others, causing a deconstruction of the sense of self and identity.
Not to say that the best way to get creative is to intentionally make yourself anxious and paranoid, but there exists a much wider variety of starting points for a project than internet research.