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Welcome to the Random Picture tutorial


Click here for the free interactive online version of this technique

How to use the Random Picture technique

This method is very similar to the random word technique and many of its working principles are explained in that section, so please read that first if you haven't already. You should also read the section on methods of using a stimulus for new ideas.

The first thing you need for this technique is, fairly obviously, a random picture. This is then used as a prompt to come up with new ideas and solutions. You can get such an image from brainstorming software or you can select it at random yourself from a magazine, encyclopedia or picture book. You can also use a picture from a website (see the Random Website technique).

You should look at the picture, extract a concept or idea from it and use this idea to stimulate a possible solution to your problem. Try to see anything in the picture which reminds you of your problem and how it might be solved. What activities are going on? What situations are being faced? Why are the people doing what they are doing? What principles are being used?

With a picture in front of you, extract an idea from it, or imagine a similar theme/person/action happening within your own situation.

Next think of how you can use that new situation/object/attitude in your own situation. It does not immediately have to be a positive solution but you may later be able to move from it to a good solution.

Click here for more methods of moving from a stimulus to an idea.

Use similar techniques and attitudes to those for the Random Word. The same "watch outs" and skills are needed as described for the Random Word technique.


What do you have to be careful of when using the Random Picture technique?

You must be careful of deciding that a specific picture is of no use and getting another instead. If you do this then often you are just trying to choose a random picture which obviously fits into the problem you are trying to solve and therefore you end up with a picture which is not random. Again, the skill is to work out HOW the picture can be made to fit.

You also have to be careful of linking the picture with an idea you already know about. You have to train your mind not to do this and to take the picture at face value and not use the technique to come up with an old idea to show that the old idea is good.

Also, a point which is not so relevant to Random Word, is that you may just stare at the picture and think how nice the picture is and not get anything out of it except a sense of wellbeing (which, admittedly, may not be such a bad thing at times!).

Please try the Random Picture technique for yourself and you will certainly improve at coming up with new ideas.

Get a random picture now and try it out. Click here for the free interactive demonstration.


To move to the next technique, click on the green door to continue the green (Advanced Brainstorming) tour.
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Home Page Green advanced brainstorming tour - click for the next page Click here to return to the creative techniques contents page
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