• Nikki Martinez

Art As The Creative Process



This week, I find myself revisiting art as part of the process for creativity. Rather than making art only when time permits, or on the weekends, I try to paint, draw, sketch, or just doodle, as part of other creative work. Such as:


--When facing a blank page before a writing deadline

--During the in-between stages of client projects

--As a way to feel happy and create instantly

--When my voice needs a break from narrating

--As self-therapy when going through a darker mood


As fate would have it, I fell ill this week and was unable to do voiceover recordings for a few days. It was on the canvas that I found comfort and the courage to make a mess, make mistakes, make art for fun.


Giving myself the space to rest, and treating my spirit to a few hours of painting for pleasure alone—this felt like instant medicine.


Sometimes, we think that art must be good to be worth our time. Or, that the things we should put effort into are only lucrative projects.

But what if we made art simply because it makes us happy?


This is what my 8-year-old often does, and she makes me want to have fun making art, too. (Here she is, getting into my paints)




I am currently doing the in-depth tutorials by Alex Tzavaras. His Introduction to Mass Drawing and Alla Prima Oil Painting course uses straightforward step by step exercises to learn:


· How oil paint works and how to use it correctly

· How to draw with accurate proportion

· How light and dark tonal “values” are used to create 3D form

· A way of seeing which will enable you to recognise the large underlying “masses”

· The stages of creating and Alla Prima painting, from block-in, to refining edges and adding details

· Practical Information about paint, brushes, canvas and other materials



Another course I am enjoying is by Karishma Chugani, Artist, Illustrator, and Educator:


Inside a Creative Notebook: Explore Your Illustration Process




Karishma reminds us, that a sketchbook is a fundamental tool in any creative process. It provides a free space for experimenting, playing, and most importantly, making mistakes. By capturing inspiration and ideas in a single place, learn to overcome creative blocks by exploring experimental techniques in drawing, stamping, and paper cutting.

I have lived in Italy for many years, but have yet to tackle painting nature, and learning Plein Air techniques. But the more time I spend outdoors, by the sea, soaking the sunlight, the more I want to learn to render the colors and light.


Am starting with these still life exercises before moving onto my favorite subject—the human body. And then nature, outside.


So far, am enjoying the process. Here is a beautiful yellow zucchini my husband brought in from the garden the other day—told the family they will have to wait till I’m done painting it before they can eat it. 😉


What have you been having fun creating lately?


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