Find inspiration, the Leonardo da Vinci way! | Peter Jochems | Skillshare

Playback Speed

  • 0.5x
  • 1x (Normal)
  • 1.25x
  • 1.5x
  • 2x

Find inspiration, the Leonardo da Vinci way!

teacher avatar Peter Jochems, Artist, Vlogger, Teacher

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

17 Lessons (1h 25m)
    • 1. 01 Trailer

    • 2. 02 what Leonardo said

    • 3. 03 Where to find interesting stains and textures

    • 4. 04 Different cameras and how to make a photo

    • 5. 05 Assignment finding interesting stains and textures

    • 6. 06 Reducing chaos to well conceived shapes

    • 7. 07 interpreting images free association

    • 8. 08 Assignment contemplating on images

    • 9. 09 Sketching inspired by found stains and textures

    • 10. 10 Assignment Sketching after found stains and images

    • 11. 11 other images and found stains sketching

    • 12. 12 Assignment Sketching after found stains and textures and other images

    • 13. 13 Inspirational video 01

    • 14. 14 Inspirational video 02

    • 15. 15 Inspirational video 03

    • 16. 16 How to proceed

    • 17. 17 Challenge

  • --
  • Beginner level
  • Intermediate level
  • Advanced level
  • All levels
  • Beg/Int level
  • Int/Adv level

Community Generated

The level is determined by a majority opinion of students who have reviewed this class. The teacher's recommendation is shown until at least 5 student responses are collected.





About This Class

Leonardo da Vinci (1452 - 1519) once described a way to find new inventions and ideas. Look at stains on a wall, he said, or ashes of a fire, or clouds to find new inventions. To him it was an aid to reflect and think about things. In this class I will guide you through a process in which you can develop this habit for yourself, and enrich the ways in which you can form your creative ideas.

I will show you different kinds of found textures, so you can find them for yourself too where you are, and I will show you ways in which you can extract interesting ideas from them.

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Peter Jochems

Artist, Vlogger, Teacher


Hello, I'm Peter. I am an artist and teacher. In the past I studied the art of the old masters extensively. From this experience and my own experience as an artist I make my classes. 


See full profile

Class Ratings

Expectations Met?
  • Exceeded!
  • Yes
  • Somewhat
  • Not really
Reviews Archive

In October 2018, we updated our review system to improve the way we collect feedback. Below are the reviews written before that update.

Why Join Skillshare?

Take award-winning Skillshare Original Classes

Each class has short lessons, hands-on projects

Your membership supports Skillshare teachers

Learn From Anywhere

Take classes on the go with the Skillshare app. Stream or download to watch on the plane, the subway, or wherever you learn best.


1. 01 Trailer: Hello. Welcome. My name is Peter Yoakam's I'm an Artist. Make Bay things. And in the past I've studied Theo old masters. Extensively way. This is a class that I made about a talk that Leonardo da Vinci had about finding inspiration in places where you wouldn't expect them and especially stains on the walls, for example, or ashes on the ground off the fire. So that is what this class is about. I think it can help you to find new ideas, new inspiration. Maybe when you are stuck creatively, it can help a thing. So thank you for watching and have fun doing this class. 2. 02 what Leonardo said: you know, DaVinci talks about looking at walls splashed with a number off stains off stones with various scholars, and you can look at them. And if you have to invent some seen, he says, you can watch them, and you see resemblances with a number off landscapes, mountains, rivers, rocks, trees. You can see battles in them figures and rapid action faces with strange expressions, outlandish costumes. And he talks about reducing these two goods integrated form. So he talks actually about the process off, finding something in the random texture and reducing it to something that you can use well conceived, integrated form that you can use in your own work as an artist. He also talks about the sounds off bells. So when you hear bells, you can here every name or words that you can imagine. It's important to know that, he says, that you can imagine you are imagining things from your own frame of reference when you hear random sounds and look at random stains on walls, for example, he says that it should not be hard to stop sometimes and look at those stains on the walls , ashes off fire or mud or clouds. So he talks about this as a sort off habit that you can develop as an artist to find really great ideas in obscure things, the mind off the painter, he says. But you could be a fashion designer. Or maybe you make three D images on a computer. He was, of course, a Renaissance artist. Butts. You can apply this into your own practice as an artist or whatever you do, your mind can be stimulated to find new ideas spy obscure things, for you would not expect to find those things, maybe at the first in the first place. 3. 03 Where to find interesting stains and textures: Where do you find interesting stains and textures? I was waiting for a train and I walked outsides and I saw this wall with glazed bricks. You like to look off those, but I saw off all of a sudden when I looked closer at them that there were all these little irregular things going on. So I went from stone to stone and I made three or four off five images pictures here. But I could have taken 100. Perhaps if I had to look for them. So And this is just a stone. While which I happened to look at my chance, waiting for a train. Here. You can find papers in the morning, but people toward a cigarettes in them, or it gets death. Some water damage. There have a little box where people put out your cigarettes. Also an interesting one. I don't know what this is, but I really like this right color on these stones because you know it. It's colored stones. This is a very old wall in the city of Delft. Your honest for me, it was born and here also in Delft. And you can see that there are textures everywhere. So here someone had some damage. The one person's damages the other person's inspiration so you can find the Texas anywhere , and sometimes it takes a little while before you start being receptive for them. But once you get the hang off, it's you have to see them appear anywhere around you. 4. 04 Different cameras and how to make a photo: here. I have three photo cameras. This is a delis are. And on this, dealers are I have a portrait, lands 50 millimeter lens. Um, you can get these lands is relatively cheap, and these are really great for if you want to make a photograph off a stain off something on the wall This essay I found, I think most smartphones nowadays have a decent camera so you can use such a smartphone when you are on your way and you see something, just click away captured. That's something that you find because most of the time you won't have such a a camera. With you, it's inconvenience, but you can have this always in your pockets. This is a part and shoots. You can use such a camera as well that it's also computing to take with you. But I think that most smartphones have a decent camera enough to use when you really are searching for a really great picture off something. Then you can put a camera like this on a trip. It that's the best way to capture something. You can go for the best quality, but in most off the cases you will have to use your phone. I think when you make it a habit off looking at stains or other things that are unexpected , and this is most convenient thing to do. I think most of the images that I make for this course is are made by this camera and a flock camera. The camera, which I'm using to make this video. That's the G seven X. That's That's a camera that is designed to make video flocks for YouTube. Mostly those are two cameras that I use when you want to make a photograph. I would suggest that you hold it parallel to the surface that you want to photograph. So this is an interesting surface. And let's take my iPhone to make a photograph. So here is a side fuel and I take my iPhone. Have a hold. It's like this allowed to photograph. You can use other angles, but I found that holding a parallel actually gives the best records, but that's what you want to capture on photograph 5. 05 Assignment finding interesting stains and textures: now when I want you to do is to take a camera and it could be a phone. It can be another camera that you have, but just go outside or walk to your house and try looking for interesting the random Dexter's, so to speak. So it can be a stain on the wall, maybe ashes around s ashtray. Just trying to find something which appeared without, let's say, human intervention. So maybe you had water damage to a cardboard box. Maybe there was, uh, paints somewhere which shouldn't be there. So just try to make nine or 10 photographs off them. I try to make a little collection off images and further on in this class. You can use these images to do the assignments, and if you have little time or you weren't very successful in finding these, maybe it takes a little longer. You can also use the inspirational videos that I made a spot of this class, but do try to find some of these yourself 6. 06 Reducing chaos to well conceived shapes: here I have a drawing by Leonardo da Vinci and he's sketching. He's looking for ideas, is trying out certain things. So we see a Madonna figure with two little Children. Maybe it was crushed and John, Or if she only one child and look at how he is searching for the rights shape with these Children here, it's I think this is also the police. Very child. Shoot, Come here. The shapes are quite well conceived, but here he seems to be searching for the right shape. I'm not saying that he based this on the stain on the wall, but I can imagine that someone who is searching in this very sketchy way on paper with all these lines searching for the rights Ah, shape off this a little child. Um, here you can see how he is reducing a chaotic number off lines into more well conceived shapes. So this looks, for example, a bit like this with this leg here. So from I guess it might well be that he went from this to this. It's possible. So here you see how he reduces in his sketches a certain chaotic shape and to a more well conceived ship. And again, I'm not saying that he based this on stains, but I think you see a part off how he approached those things, how he how his process in designing, painting work more or less. So you get an idea of how you can ah view his ideas off reducing shape from a chaotic shipped to a moral conceived shape. But you don't have to follow exactly this process. This is a rain sounds fainter, and you can take things out of this which inspire you. But maybe you can find other ways to incorporate his idea of finding new discoveries in stains and multicolored stones. It into your own process because we're not da Vinci. We are our own artist. 7. 07 interpreting images free association: here I have a photograph that I made off a cardboard box and it's where I live. It's just very messy place in the house, but I really like this. I mean, it has had some water damage, I think. But it's like a very nice watercolor, almost here. These tonal values. When I look at this, I see it's all off misty landscape and it reminds me in a way off Japanese art. So I find this very interesting and this is just a cardboard box which has had some water damage. Here's a photograph that I've made in Delft very old, while this is And when I look at this, this reminded me also off sort of river. When I look at this, you have the stones. It seems like a batter in here, but it it it looked to me as sort off river or something. I made this, uh, photograph when I was waiting for a train in Breda. And I really like this here. This area, it's like some sort off snow. When I look at this, I got the feeling that it's a very snowy landscape and as if this a slat, our car comes to the snow. I really liked glazing on these stone Smuts. To me, the main the main focus was this this area. Was it very rich? No. We landscape. What snow in brownish scholars is falling is actually, um, going up from below Almost. But this is what it made me think off snowy landscape. And these are ashes. It's a dustbin on a train station. You can see it here litter. And, um, this actually makes me think of certain images. Sifton droppings? Awfully another the Finci. Actually, um, I had the feeling that as if there are canons throwing bombs, shooting bombs in my direction and here they are falling down this one. I don't know what it actually looks like when a bomb falls down, but it may be Think off that as if all kinds of explosions are directed to me. But here and here. So that's what this make me Think off. I'm looking. If if I see something else when you look at this and this you see almost to ice, I would almost drama knows here some sort of monster. Do you see it here? These eyes And, uh, yeah, sometimes to go to just take a long while to to look at something. See if something in your brain called next's with what you're seeing in front of you. Now I feel that this monster has a sort of hats here. So the longer I watch it, the more I see a months or here. So the sesame street of quite friendly monster with these are his eyes. And he was something he swearing on his head, Hear his shoulder. Anyway, that's this. These are just my my things that I think off. 8. 08 Assignment contemplating on images: now you were seen how I contemplate certain images, and I associates upon them trying to get new ideas from them. What I want you to do is to look at the images that you made yourself are. Look at the inspirational videos that I made this part of this class and try to contemplate evidence. Don't go too fast. Just try to look at them for a long time. Maybe you see something immediately. Maybe it takes a minute or two, but just start to write down. What your thoughts are can be silly thoughts. Doesn't matter. Just write down what you think. What what comes up in your minds? What kind of connections do your brain does your brain make? And maybe there's something there that you can use in your own creative process, which makes a connection with what you do in your own creative field. 9. 09 Sketching inspired by found stains and textures: have a stain on the wall. I don't know what it exactly is maybe something for something, and that's just sketch a little bit to see if we can get some inspiration from this. I see this shape here. So maybe this could be some sort off hot air balloon in a very strange shape. Or maybe this is spaceship or this could be a monster as well. That strong I in this shit here and some teeth. So we went from a hot air balloon to a spaceship to a monster. And let's see if there's more to to see in this. This almost looks like the Netherlands country were living, and I'm just watching this. That's put it this way. I'm left handed groups. Let's see. It's like there's a butterfly here, oddly shaped but a fly. I just try to copy the butterfly off this so we have this, and that's at some details to make it actually about to fly. We can see if we can make this richer. I just think of thes is not from this photograph. What's we haven't oddly shaped about to fly. I'm just putting on some axe situations and maybe the butterfly ice on a branch somewhere. I don't know. And let's see if it come see something else in here. I'm just watching all these shapes. Well, that's not milk it. And here here we have another picture. This is a picture off a wooden. I don't know what it takes extra exactly. Waas what it's would. And, uh, that's Chief. This brings some idea these look to me like louts. So if I look at thes and I must say, this shape here looks like a nice hot air balloon. So let's pretend that in those clouds this is hanging with every strange shaped for health abloom with a I'm looking at these accentuation is here that paints has fallen off. So this is the way that you can approach things. You just take a piece of paper and you start sketching here. We have to Scott Board box. Let's say that's this is beautifully itself. It's a work of Arps made by chance. What's let's make this a moon that's at some starts here and there. So that's the way that you can used these images and, well, I'm not going to make another hot air balloon here. But you can freely associate with these images and make sketches, and later on you can decide Well, I like this idea. Let's let's make it the rial landscape or something. But that's for later. But this is your love laboratory off ideas. Just pick a pencil and some paper, and you can use your phone or not bet on tablets. And Scott, she bits. 10. 10 Assignment Sketching after found stains and images: Now you have seen me make sketches after some photographs off these random textures, and I want you to take your collection of images that you make yourself or look at my inspirational videos that are made for this class and try to look at those images and try to contemplate them and just catch on a piece of paper. What you think off you can take parts off the photographs. You can combine them with your own ideas. Just let your mind wander around with a pencil on the paper. It's nice if it has a certain beauty, but that's not the aim off this. The aim of this is to get your ideas flowing. So try to make sketches. Even if you come up with a very silly idea. Nothing is silly. It can all be interesting. 11. 11 other images and found stains sketching: way, Have a photograph and I really like these things round it, but she'll have to call that, but and I have a few details off the work off for me. This is these are all from of actual museum and I mates. Ah, photographs cops off those images for another project that I once had. But I can look at this. Maybe I can combine something off this with something that I see any other images that I have here. So for me, it was one of my favorite dangerous. Maybe it gives me a little bit of inspiration to look at this. I see these pearls here and I look at this here is like a pearl. Ah, necklace for this. Let's see if if something can be combines, So just copy to shake more or less off this. This here. Maybe I can just true in that hearing here this hearing and let's see if we can put in some other stuff here. So here's a nice shape off knows. That's just and just a detail. Now look again at this photograph to see if there's something that I can take from this. I'm looking at these lines here. So that's assuming the little bits so you can see what I'm doing a little bit. That's and I'm just trying out things some nuts. I tried to make this interesting, but I'm not assuming this is going to be a very good drawing in any way. But it's just the laboratory off ideas. So maybe I could do nothing with this sketch. Maybe maybe admit I could make a painting off it. I'm looking at these shapes here. Well, that's just take this sketch, this little bits and maybe we can. I'm looking at this here. Now. You have dese these shapes here with this here, we almost get a perspective effect here. And that's ads this certain, um, necklace here and it's by no means great drawing or whatever, but I found a combination interesting off certain shapes here, which are very elegant in a way and the kind off imagery that from ear gets because these lines of C here a swell a little bit. So now I'm looking here two thes and it's a bit chaotic. You get all kinds of things to each other, but now I'm looking at these things that I drew after this would. And now I think, Well, let's make it all like this pearl here. Well, let's the same pearl. So now wonder now I'm looking at this here, and I get the idea that's this. Could be a figure with a shoulder here, and we look at her from the back. We have this long hair here, and we have this jewelry here, so I get an idea for a figure. Peace, which does not look like this photograph. It doesn't look really just really look like this here because the figure has a different boasts butts just by associating, uh, a nice, interesting image like this with photographs off my favorite painter for me. Um, I end up withs in my few and interesting sketch, which I could use for ah, figure piece for painting. So that's the way you can get to new ideas. And I would not have thought about this any other way because I just showed you how I didn't have a clue about this beforehand. So this is how you can, uh, combine imagery that you like. Maybe you like old cars. Maybe you like clouds. Maybe you like Egypt. Egyptian imagery, and you can combine it with these kind off images from from structures that that you found anywhere that you find anywhere. I must say that certain moment I thought this is going nowhere and all of Southern thought Hey, this is interesting. When I saw this could be a shoulder. We're looking at her from the back and this could be jewelry. 12. 12 Assignment Sketching after found stains and textures and other images: But with next assignment is that you take your images, the collection of images that you make yourself or you take the inspirational videos that I made, Um, and try to find some images that you like yourself. So maybe you like Egypt's Egyptian art. Maybe you like old cars, old timers. Or maybe you like horses. I'm just Maybe you like ballet dancing images of belly dancers. Just try to look for images that are appealing to you, which you find interesting to work with and lay them next to an image off something that you have found a random texture and try to combine these try to find sort of combination. Maybe you find a line here and, uh, the little detail there. Make something off those together and maybe you surprise yourself. I'm sure you will surprise yourself like I was surprised in the video that I made off what you come up with 13. 13 Inspirational video 01: no. 14. 14 Inspirational video 02: no. 15. 15 Inspirational video 03: no. 16. 16 How to proceed: So now that you have done this class and you have learned about this approach, what are you going to do with it? Um, there's different ways to implement this in your creative process, and I think that's also very personal. Um, I think you can make it the habits off being receptive for unexpected influences. So when you look at something on a wall when you look at the basement, I once heard a famous composer say that the best composer is someone who can work out the melody when he hears, for example, and unexpected sound like a car horn or something like that. So it's maybe, in the end sort of mindsets sort off development in which you are opening your creative antenna to unexpected. It influences that you can't find anywhere. Um, so maybe you build up your creative process around something like this around random textures that you find. Or maybe you have a totally different approach, maybe if every controlled, approaching your actual creative process. But when you are walking around, maybe you got an idea, Um, by seeing something unexpected and this glass could be a training for that. So that's up to you. How you implement that 17. 17 Challenge: Thank you very much for watching. I hope you enjoyed this class that I made. I hope it brought some new inspiration. My challenge for you is I would really love to see what you did with the assignments. What you all results are the things that it inspired you to make. So please share some of that. Some off your fam textures or whatever you made with them, maybe give a little piece of context a little text, but that's not necessary. But I would love to see some off something what you did with it and thank you very much for watching.