(Paraphrased from Art: Images and
Ideas by Laura H. Chapman)
Imaginative seeing is looking at something and
imagining that it is something different. About 500 years ago, the
famous Renaissance artist Leonardo da Vinci wrote about this way to
see. He suggested that artists look at cracks in stones and imagine
the lines as something else, such as a great river, a mountain range
or even a person's face.
Perhaps you have looked at clouds and pretended
they were animals, people or fantastic landscapes. Artists often
create imaginative art in this way. They put unlike ideas - clouds
and animals together.
Imaginative perception can also help you
appreciate artworks, especially art from other cultures. You should
first learn why the art was created. Then you can imagine yourself
living within that culture.
Nonobjective artworks often require imaginative
skills to create or appreciate them. You can appreciate
nonobjective artworks if you imagine yourself as the artist, making
all the decisions you see in the work. For example, you might
imagine yourself becoming fascinated with a cool, blue-gray color to
capture quietness, sadness or loneliness.
Check for understanding:
Choose one of the following words and write it on
drawing paper: delicate, flowing, strong, restful, sad, and lonely.
Turn your paper over and create a nonobjective drawing that goes
with the word. See if another person can tell which word you
selected when they look at your drawing.