Whether you’re drawing or painting, composition counts just as much as execution. And, while fruit is delicious and nutritious, let’s face it, it’s a little played out on the still life scene. Below are 10 ideas to try as you practice setting up interesting compositions.
Jack in the Box, teddy bears, bouncing balls, and spinning tops provide plenty of contrast and color.
Stacks of books, magazines, or ephemera from today’s mail all provide rich imagery to tackle.
A laptop surrounded by pencil buckets and coffee cups provides perspective and variety.
Get down on the floor and check out the legs of the chair, the flooring beneath, and the tangle of cords or electrical sockets behind.
Set the scene with a variety of drinking glasses, wine glasses, kid’s cups, and mugs.
Gather up a varied collection of potted plants, ranging from ivies and palms to cacti and succulents to create a botanical scene.
Students can pull a few items out of their packs to create a personal still life scene.
Set up cereal boxes, cookie tins, candy bars, and other junk food packages – you’ll certainly get some color.
Pull a few pieces out of the trash, including crumpled lunch bags, smashed soda cans, and balled napkins.
Instruments in their natural environments are usually surrounded by interesting things – sheet music, stands, cases, and more.
If you’re looking for tips on setting up your compositions, from shape, color, texture, and size to lighting and negative space, check out Composition 101, on our blog.
Do you review still life composition with your classes? What other ideas do you have for objects that set an interesting scene? Let us know in the comments below.