Could you share some of your ideas in arranging still life's to make it more fun and interesting?
For example: taking your time with the composition of your still, so you can like it enough, etc.
I'm drawing a still life per day and I'm starting to feel that every still I draw is becoming a repetition of the previous ones.
Collect cool junk. Arrange it in weird ways. Light it dramatically.
It doesn't have to be fruit and dishes all the time. You could set up tableaux with funky toys, for instance. Or raid thrift stores for weird junk. Personally I like drawing things with funky shapes, like shells and strange seed pods and animal bones - I pick up stuff like this when I find it.
See if you can tell a story with your still life. Recently I picked up a magazine and inside there was a painting of a hammer hanging over a piggy bank. Even just taken at face value, as two objects, you saw it and thought "oh no, what's going to happen?"
Or you could do still life with a theme. You could do "stuff I found in the basement", for example, or "junk food" or "opposites". Or you could think of a friend and gather together objects that remind you of them (instant birthday present, btw).
If you have artist friends you can hold a still life party where everybody brings a weird object they own. We did that in painting class once and everybody was assigned a different colour so the end result was controlled.
I tried going to garage sales to pick up things to paint, but that wasn't very successful. People own a lot of boring junk they want to get rid of. I've had more luck finding strange random things in alleyways on garbage day. I don't want to touch most of the stuff but one day I might go and do some plein-air painting of other people's garbage just because they put such weird shit out there.
You can experiment with different colours, light sources, shapes, surfaces, levels of finishing, compositions and narratives. The variables are limitless, but how you go about it in an interesting way can only be upto you. Painting stuff that gets you excited can yield the best results. You could also look up still life artists for inspiration, as well as do studies of them to learn the techniques and ideas of the artist, and then apply them to you own work.
Last edited by B u r l; August 31st, 2012 at 10:55 AM.