This chapter examines the way in which some artists move from the pre-sense towards a more specific idea or image of the potential artwork before starting work with their medium. This idea or image may emerge only after a process of research or experimentation, guided by intuition. This may lead directly to an idea for the work, but sometimes a period of gestation is needed before an idea emerges, often unexpectedly, in a moment of illumination or inspiration. During this gestatory period, out of the artist’s awareness, the abstracted elements of the initial encounter come together with other elements of the artist’s inner world (such as memories and fantasies). The chapter includes a discussion of psychoanalyst Christopher Bollas’ concepts of the ‘receptive unconscious’ and ‘psychic genera’ and their relevance to this process, together with references to the work of Anton Ehrenzweig, Marion Milner and the psychologist Graham Wallas. It draws on interviews with artists Hughie O’Donoghue, Gina Glover, Russell Mills, Thomson and Craighead, John Aiken, Jo Volley and Susan Collins.