1. Ask for a laundry list of creatures and elements to be in the painting.
Nah, this kind of felt contrived. While I’m sure there is a formula to good story telling, that secret’s safe from me. I feared that I might fall into a trap of using objects and symbols that in the end would be awkward and obvious. It might look cool but it wouldn’t feel very authentic. I don’t think novelists set out to write a lousy story, but somewhere along the line, things don’t click and ‘thud’ happens …and frankly, that approach wouldn’t be very fun anyway.