Biology museum, museum of ancient history, geology museum, art gallery, sculpture yard, a rock garden, a collection of celebrity toenails, it doesn’t matter if you are looking for a creativity exercise.
Get someone to describe the item before you see it. How does seeing it change your perspective? Ask a stranger for their viewpoint. Try chatting with the security guard about the display. Get a child’s opinion. Describe things to someone over the phone. What do you focus on first, second, last?
What does it look like really close. I mean really close. Try getting so close that you have a hard time focusing your eyes. Use your handheld microscope to examine the surface details. (What? You don’t carry around a handheld microscope?) Try backing away as far as you can. What does it look like viewed from another room through a doorway? What does it look like looking down from the third floor balcony? What does it look like in a mirror? (You don’t carry around a mirror either?) Does the impression change if you look at it on edge or straight up from the bottom? What does it look like upside down? (No, you upside down, not the painting)
Find all the green and focus on just that color. Can you filter out everything else in you mind? It may take a minute of concentration. Can you imagine what it would look like in black and white. It may help to squinch your eyes tight so you can only see a little bit. Where are the bright areas, dark areas? How about with the lights off? (We’re going to get kicked out for this)
Does you perception of the image change if viewed through cloth? Look through your fist for a tunnel vision view. Put your hand over your eyes for a slotted view. Try taking an eyeball photo. Keep your eyes closed for 30 seconds to a minute then do a reverse blink. Any text or familiarity will likely disappear. Try burning a reverse image in your eyes. Carefully stare at a location for a minute and then close your eyes. The image takes a second to develop. Blink inside your eyelids to refresh. Do you get any colors?
If there are enough items on display, try rushing through them as quickly as possible without evaluation or a critical eye. What did you just see? (I see the security guard trying to catch us) Try focusing on just one item for an hour. Examine every aspect in every way you can think of.
Okay, the security guard is looking straight at us and talking on the radio. We better get out of here.