Monday, January 03, 2011

New Year, New Blog, New Art

I don't really like to make New Years resolutions because, well...I pretty much suck at keeping them. Doesn't everyone? I guess that's why we just keep making the same ones year after year. Don't get me wrong, I know I need to change. A LOT. Instead of trying to lose 20 lbs, eat healthier, exercise more, and solve all of the world's problems by the end of the week, I have one goal: be a better artist. Wow, couldn't get more specific could I? Nope. Because I can't be more specific. I don't know what it means to be better or what it will take to be better, but I plan to try lots of different things and just see what happens.

I am instituting the Couch to Illustrator (C2I) program starting today. Instead of sitting on my butt thinking about what I could be doing to be a better artist, I'm going to actually do something. And maybe...just maybe, I will see a change. Hopefully this time next year I will be able to say that my little plan was a success.

The C2I program includes the following (I am open to more suggestions by the way):

1. DRAW EVERY DAY! I think this is pretty important because like most skills, if you don't use it, you lose it. Practice makes perfect. Insert any other corny saying that applies. I will draw something every single day. I'm not saying I will create a masterpiece everyday, but I will put pen to paper, brush to canvas, or stylus to tablet for at least 30 minutes each day. Perhaps it will be doodling, or maybe it will be a photoshop painting that takes me weeks to finally finish, but rest assured, something will be happening. Every. Day. (This is probably my most lofty goal, but I think it is also the most important)
2.  Blog once a week.  If I'm drawing everyday, I shouldn't have a problem scraping together a blog once a week.
3.  Figure out my own style.   There are so many illustrators whose work I love.  They all have such completely different styles.  I am a master at copying anything, but I haven't quite figured out my own personal style yet.  By drawing everyday, I'm hoping something starts to emerge. 
4.  Spend each month working on a different technique for creating art.  This is all part of figuring out my style.  I have the most experience with pencil drawing, so in order to diversify, I will spend a whole month learning and practicing different mediums.  I know a month isn't much time to master anything, but I think it is good enough to see where my strengths and weaknesses lie.  This list may change, but right now it looks like this:
  • pen/ink
  • gauche/gauche resist
  • watercolor
  • colored pencils
  • oil pastels
  • linocut
  • illustrator
  • photoshop
  • painter
  • scratchboard
  • charcoal
  • carbon dust
I think this month I will get back to basics and do some charcoal drawings.  The monthly mediums as I am calling them, may or may not be a part of my everyday drawing.  But I will make sure I devote plenty of time to each medium.

In addition to helping me improve as an artist, these things will help me build my portfolio.  My ultimate goal is that by the end of one year, I will good enough and diverse enough to start some freelance work on the side.  During the year I will also work on research, marketing ideas, and create a website.

So what was I saying about making impossible goals???  Wish me luck interwebs peeps.

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