Scribbling in smoke
In a field where pre-planing is very important, sometimes, to free my mind, I like to take a pencil and scribble on paper, without raising it for a few moments from the page, and then with as little lines possible, to get out of the chaos a subject that will make sense.
As many in the visual field, I have a library of photographs I shoot, to use them as backgrounds or effects. While looking through some of my smoke images, I noticed a lot of scribble there to work with.
I use free association doing that, and I find it very rewarding.