Inspiration: Google Art Project

Brace yourself, I’m about to give you a new weapon in the war against the blank page.

For perhaps all of human history artists have stared at that horrifying, often immobilizing blank page. That pending project, or lack of pending project, that glares mockingly at you as if to say, ‘You have no ideas. Your well has run dry’. No one likes these moments, but everyone can relate. We each have our own ways out of this darkness. We each have our own tracking devices for the muse. But we can all use one more.

A waiting canvas

A waiting canvas (image courtesy of keyseeker at |

Sometimes the most inspiring thing you can do is to immerse yourself in the work of great artists, past and present. If you are a writer, you may dive deep into the poetry of TS Elliot, or in my case Leonard Cohen. If you are a visual artist, you may drive down to the nearest art gallery and take a mindful stroll. If you are either, you should try swapping those two solutions, because creative inspiration can often spring from outside your normal discipline.

Among inspiration sources there is that holy grail of travel to an artistic mecca. A tour of Florence to see Michaelangelo’s David at the Uffizi Gallery or to New York to see Van Gogh’s Starry Night at the Museum of Modern Art. These are nice ideals, but they can take a lifetime to save and plan for. In the meantime, I’ve discovered a decent substitute you can partake of today, with just the click of your mouse. I have discovered the Google Art Project.

The Google Art Project seeks to take the worlds great art museums online, so that you can walk through their halls and discover their treasures. While it cannot replace a real trip to these priceless places, Google Art Project does offer unique benefits. Your trip is free and much faster. There are no lines and you can look on in silent solitude (my trip to the Sistene Chapel was made less wonder-full by the the thousand or so other people crowding, gawking, talking and snapping all around me. I know, poor me). All of these things make Google Art Project a great online destination, but here is the best part. Unlike a regular gallery, you can get right up close to the work. I mean really, really close. Google Art Project offers an almost microscopic level of detail, allowing you to see every crack of paint in a Van Gogh and tiny imperfections in the smooth surface of a sculpture. Getting to see these works so closely is a privilege difficult to describe. As with the art itself, each viewer will find their own merits in it. But it’s not only the visual detail you get. Each work shown includes details about its creator and creation, giving you a virtual tour guide throughout your experience (again, without line ups).

If your canvas or screen sits blank today, staring a hole into your creative soul, discover inspiration by visiting a world class art gallery with Google Art Project – it’s only a click away.

  • Neil Warren says:

    A very impressive article. Well prepared. Very motivating!! Go off on to facilitate way

  • >