So you can have the best art schooling in the world? You study under the best teachers? Watch the most inspiring tutorial videos?
That’s good…but if you are unwilling to dedicate time and effort over and above what is “required”, or place the importance of constant practice above watching TV or playing video games or getting drunk with friends…then you’ll never make it in the commercial art field.
For every moment you decide to goof off, there are thousands of others who are practicing and getting better and growing and they are your competition for a very very very small pool of jobs and assignments. Do you like competition? You’d better.
Push past your limits.
Hey guys, a quick update, you may have noticed a lack of blog updates lately and the reason is that I’ve been busy learning how to build my own site in WordPress with help from Lynda.com training.
It’s been years since I’ve tried to create my own page, but I thought it was time I learnt how to, and with WordPress and other CMS software it’s never been easier, especially for someone like myself who is primarily a creative content developer. Having a CMS is a big departure from my Computer Science days when we were coding crappy sites from notepad. WordPress is a fantastic framework that lets people like me concentrate on using my core skills — ie. creating artwork and writing, rather than half assing code and markup.
My previous site was fine for my first professional website and WeCanCreate did a great job, but it did have limitations that I wasn’t happy with. Creating my own site was the only way I could have the functionality and flexibility I required / wanted.
If you’re thinking about going this route with your own site / blog, I recommend signing up to Lynda.com and going through the WordPress 3 Essential Training with Morten Rand-Hendriksen, he takes his time to explain things to noobs such as myself and there is a lot of welcome hand holding.
I’m still in the process of getting content up-to-date, especially the gallery which has a slightly different format, focusing on projects, allowing me more space to explain the processes I have gone through to arrive at a final design / illustration choice. I’m leaning towards also incorporating lightbox functionality for those who are only interested in flicking through the images. Please excuse the broken image links, I’m still updating them
One big addition, is that I have added a FAQ section, this part of the site holds a bunch of information from my personal experience. It contains excerpts from blog posts, interviews I have done with magazines, and some have been written from scratch. I created this section primarily because these questions seem to crop up pretty often. Check it out and let me know what you think or let me know if there are errors I need to fix.
In other news my little sister is getting married at the end of the year! Very exciting news! I’ve volunteered to be her wedding photographer in return for a new lens to shoot with, and I’m really excited to do it. I’ll be getting the lens shortly, a Canon f/2.8L 70-200mm with no IS, an awesome zoom lens for those photojournalist shots. I’ll be taking it through it’s paces when I get it, and when I visit Cambobia’s Angkor Wat later in the year with Kellie.
One other quick blip, I just registered a new business domain. Exciting times ahead.
Hope your times have been productive, peace out.
Y’know, I love writing and I love my blog. I really do, I find blogging to be cathartic and it allows me to indulge in one of the more intellectual pleasures in my life…but dammit if life doesn’t have a way of forcefully interjecting itself between you and your best intentions of keeping it updated!
Thankfully though, the interjection of life in this instance, has been a positive occurrence full of learning, love, growing and a cementing of prior experiences and ways of thinking…which means a great deal of writing fodder.
Blogging is like anything that requires dedication and habit, once you break the chain, it is easy to careen seriously off course into a ditch until you make a concerted effort to pull yourself out and get back on track.
Well, I guess this little post is that concerted effort, not much to look at, but I suppose it is a tangible action to pierce the puss filled skin sack that has grown over my keyboard preventing me from bashing out lines of nonsensical jibberish and sentences masquerading as intellectual teeter-tottering.
A thought just entered my head — I think one of the big traps to blogging…or indeed going back to anything that you previously spent a lot of time engaged in, is to come back in a huge way, go back to the gym and hit the weights TWICE as hard, swim THRICE as far or come back to blogging and post TETRICE (…is that even right?!) as much!
In other words, make a grand re-entrance into the foray, which in itself can seem like a huge barrier to coming back to it.
Ah, I say screw it, just get the first one outta the way in whatever haphazard way you can and take it from there.
I hope you out there in Internet land have been kicking ass and taking names. And thanks to all the people who have asked when I’ll be back on the blog, I guess now I can say I am
Sharing is caring.
Something I read a lot about these days is that a lot of artists hate their work. Why? I LOVE my work, warts, problems and all, just as I would love my children, warts, problems and all.
Life is too short to stress out over such things, you will die early if you stress out like this! So smile and be happy =)
I’m not earning a hell of a lot of money as I am spending a lot of time on a personal commission that is time consuming but very important to my client, so I want to do a very good job on it as I know it means so much to him. I’m treating it as a fantastic opportunity to also practice my charcoal and graphite which I have not had a chance to use for a while. I’m hopefully going to finish this off by this week.
I am also going to be doing a couple of indie title box art pieces this week and I’ve also started to regularly teach a few people privately which is lovely fun. All great people of all different ages all wanting to learn art, it’s really enjoyable. I am looking forward to doing more personal art work in the coming weeks as well as having the time to solicit more personal and commercial jobs heh.
I’ve become really interested in delving into my cultural background as of late seeing as I have never done that before, so I have purchased some books on Chinese and Japanese art and I am tearing into it so that it informs my work a little bit more. Also, I have become a little more interested in Buddhist teachings and mediation.
Sketchgroup has been going really well, we’re having new people join all the time, seen new faces just about every week, been pretty awesome, recently had some new dudes turn up, they’re great artists and great people too, I have a feeling that they will become good mates.
I came across this little video on a speech delivered by Elizabeth Gilbert, best selling author of Eat, Pray, Love this morning while I was lying, warm and snuggled in my bed.
I had just woken up after another crazy late night working till 5am — which I love by the way, so I’m not complaining, and I was checking out my emails and any new interesting Facebook updates so I guess I kinda discovered it by accident since I don’t really pay too much attention to people posting vids.
Most likely it is because I have grappled with such issues in the past, regarding creativity blocks that I really enjoyed listening to this alternative method of dealing with success and failures.
It’s similar to some of the sentiments and ways of thinking laid out in The Artist’s Way, but delivered with some good natured humour, warmth and emotion that is difficult to get from the written word.
Hope you enjoy it and if you wish to discuss it or comment about it, please feel free to use the comment section below.
I’ve been asked on occasion who my major influences were as an artist and the name that I consistently cite as a major influence in mentality, if not so much in style, is Norman Rockwell, who has been endowed, at numerous times with the moniker of America’s Most Beloved Artist.
His main schtick was to create highly detailed, rose tinted glass, stylised paintings that depicted idealised scenes of American life. This also won him his fair share of detractors who attacked him for the sweet natured underlying current of all his art which they said didn’t reflect reality in all it’s grittiness.
I’m feeling particularly inspired today, been listening to a crapload of interviews from Sidebar with many of my favourite artists, if you still haven’t checked out their goody goodness and are an art fan, do so!
I went to sleep at 4am yesterday, woke up today at 7am…to the sound of the garbage man coming and realising in a panic that I had forgotten to put the trash out! So I pulled on my shoes and sprinted out to catch him. Mission accomplished oh yeah! Anyway, then after that I couldn’t get back to sleep because I’ve been on a sketching binge — I’ll post some art and art process here later for you to check out.
Also, this is really just a quick adrenalin spike of me wishing you a good day dear reader! Carpe Diem, sieze the day, do what you need to do, whether it’s art, business, quitting a job, asking a girl out, dancing like the world is about to end, do it today cause tomorrow might never come.
A friend once said there are three types of people, those who give you energy and make you feel pumped for life and it’s myriad of possibilities, there are those who sap your energy and can dull even the brightest day! Then there are those who do nothing for you at all.
Aim to be the person who brightens and uplifts and inspires and energizes others, you’ll find it does as much if not more for you as well =)
This Nike Ad ROCKS this:
Catch ya on the flipside!
I just arrived home from catching up with a close friend of mine who lives on the other side of Australia. Because of his location, we don’t get to hang out much but when we do it’s like we see and work with each other every day.
We both joke around, talking the most juvenile stuff known to man, our sexual exploits, our embarrassing stories…sometimes it’s difficult to talk through the laughter. I have literally had to stop laughing at some of his stories, not because they weren’t funny, but because my jaw muscles, belly and cheeks were aching.
In the next breath we have discussed at length, to unconscionable hours of the morning things like courage, integrity, the existence of God, brotherhood, male pride, intestinal fortitude and what it is like to hear a man screaming, knowing that he is about to die and how it feels, being the cause of it.
Take time to observe the habits of great atheletes.
Sure, they may have skills and talent that we may never have, but what they do, and what we can do, is master the basics. They practice them over and over again, for hundreds if not thousands of hours, out of the spotlight, out of the view of a cheering crowd until one day they are consistently brilliant.
They do this until the basics become second nature, and they can rely on them under pressure and adverse conditions. And they return to them whenever they hit trouble.
Over the years I’ve observed that is exactly the same in any arena: Learn what the basics are, practice them constantly, use them well and success will come.