Embracing Playfulness: Unleashing Creativity in Your Art Practice

Embracing Playfulness: Unleashing Creativity in Your Art Practice

Hey there, fellow artists! Today, I want to share with you some of my favorite ways to infuse playfulness into my art practice. As someone who believes that creativity thrives in a spirit of experimentation and joy, I've discovered a few tricks that keep my process lively and my imagination fired up. Whether you're a seasoned artist or just starting out on your creative journey, these tips might just spark some inspiration for you! 

Switching Hands: One of my favorite ways to shake things up is by painting with my non-dominant hand. It might sound intimidating at first, but trust me, the results can be surprisingly delightful. Painting with your non-dominant hand forces you to let go of control and perfectionism, allowing happy accidents to occur and opening up new pathways of expression. 

Exploring Unconventional Tools: Who says you have to stick to traditional paintbrushes? Grabbing everyday objects like sponges, or even kitchen utensils can add an exciting element of surprise to your work. Experiment with different textures and shapes, and don't be afraid to get messy! 

Mixed Media Magic: Mixing things up with various materials is a surefire way to inject playfulness into your art. Collage, found objects, paper scraps, texture materials – the possibilities are endless! Combining different mediums not only adds visual interest but also invites you to explore new techniques and push the boundaries of your creativity. 

Here is a mixed media loose floral. I have a blast creating these on paper.

Scribble Like a Kid: Remember the uninhibited joy of scribbling with crayons as a child? Embrace that same sense of freedom in your art practice! Grab a chunky marker or a piece of charcoal and let your hand roam freely across the page. You'll be amazed at the energy and spontaneity that comes through in your marks. 

Drip, Drip, Drip: There's something inherently playful about letting paint drip and flow across your canvas or paper. Grab your favorite colors, thin them out with water,  or fluid medium and watch as gravity works its magic. Allow yourself to surrender to the process and see where the drips take you. 

Scratch and Etch: For an added layer of texture and depth, try scratching into wet paint with objects like popsicle sticks or even your fingernails. This playful technique can create intricate patterns and reveal unexpected details, adding visual interest to your work. 

In my collaborative bestselling book, The Creative Life: Reflections on the Art of Living a Fully Expressed Life, I dive deeper into the importance of playfulness in the creative process. I share how I love to play around on paper as an alternative to canvas, finding that I feel less precious about it and often make some of my best discoveries there. 


And here's a bonus tip: Start a sketchbook that is all about being playful, not at all about work that you are selling or need to show anyone. This sketchbook is your sacred space for creative exploration and enjoyment. Release all the harsh criticism and judgment, and allow yourself to play freely without constraints. It's amazing how liberating it can be to create just for the sake of creating, without any pressure or expectations.

Here is a two pages from mine:


Remember, art is about exploration, experimentation, and, above all, enjoyment. So go ahead, embrace your inner child, and let playfulness be your guide in your artistic endeavors. Who knows what wondrous creations await when you approach your work with a spirit of curiosity and fun? 

Happy creating, my fellow artists!