Best advice: Keep searching for the perfect dramatic artistic creation. Be open to loose lines and sketchy boundaries.
Well. It sounded good in my head....the topic I'm posting today is sort of about momentum as it has to do with how much artwork I've been working with. Now, first off, when I say working with I really mean thinking about. I may not have physically touched the work in weeks, but I'm definitely thinking about (somewhere up there) what my next step will be with certain old AND new pieces.
It can feel a little overwhelming when I think about coming to a close on a single piece yet I've just wrapped up several more sketches/drawings that I would like to complete the same way. This is one of the reasons I assembled the Calgary Sketchbookers meetup group here in Calgary, AB. I wanted an outlet to sort of resync my creative thoughts with others in the community and offer them a place to do the same. We are free to join together on some ongoing 'sub-plotting' as well as doodle, sketch and draw at their leisure while we bandy about awesome concepts, the latest artist highlights and share 'n tell our latest sketchbook achievements.
Every masterpiece starts somewhere. Just let your fingers do the walking through Leonardo DaVinci's sketchbooks sometime. Pretty 'sketchy' stuff if you ask me, and yet - how renowned is he?? That's right. So keep doodling, noodle those doodles, and finally turn some of those noodled doodles into sketchy drawings.
My challenge to you, and my Sketchbooker allies is to add a cartoon a day into your sketchbooks, and start by doodling the heck out of the first page.
Sketch you future Friends!
I just wanted to post a quick momentum gaining artwork for this morning. I've added more layers of warm grey markers of the Copic collection along with some hints of green or other colors for foliage. It will see completion soon, but until then perhaps I can work on building some steam while helping other artists find their momentum in the shop today!
i have many works in progress. So many, in fact that I've lost count. This is not a bad thing, rather it's a very nice feeling to know that at any given moment I've an art work started that I could finish in between commissions and co tract work. I should have taken a picture this morning for what was yesterday's post....oh well. There's always time for updates!
The photo of yesterday's WIP (work in progress) is of Copic marker in dollar store canvas. I came across this concept, which may not be a new one - just new to me - while assisting a customer at #KensingtonArtSupply. She was in search of a more refined way of painting her canvas after having carbon-transferred art from a color book to her canvas. An honest reversal of process - she realized she hadn't added an underpainting first. Now the only way to proceed would be by a paint by number process (without the numbers). By complete accident I discovered that I could use copic marker (or rather alcohol ink) or a water-based marker called the Zig Clean Color Real Brush markers. I've found so far that I am not having to leave behind too much ink to make a decent mark on the cheap canvas while using my copic marker brushes. However, I do wonder if the rough surface of the canvas will have a toll on the brush tips. It is possible that the texture and the sweeping motion of the tip side on the canvas could be wearing away an otherwise smooth brush surface. We shall see. If there is such an impact I'll be sure to write about it!
I'm altogether stoked like a fire on a cold winter's day about the prospect of creating a lot more artwork on canvas at the speed at which I draw an image on paper! My challenge today is to remind yourself what makes your art thrive and in what ways YOU can step out of your usual creative box to create something extraordinary in your eyes.
Until next time, my friends. Sketch your future!
Also, if you've not already peeked on the calendar or received an invite please check out the Calgary Sketchbookers if you've been looking for a place and time to doodle & sketch with other artists for the pure education and pleasure of it.
Sometimes I think art is war....of course that makes one think of the aged tome, Art Of War. No. This is different. While I believe there is an art to war as it is historically understood there seems to be a war of a kind in art.
To be a working artist this day and age I believe I must have the conviction to persist in my artistic passion. I feel like a silent warrior of art through every competition I enter in an effort to become accepted further as a professional.
I'm reminded of a rather epic story of a Shakespearean quality. George Lucas brilliantly weaves a legendary retelling of star-crossed lovers, two houses of power and a smattering of deep philosophy to give his audience a strong sense of empowerment. People associated themselves mostly with the protagonist of the story, Luke Skywalker. His journey became his adventure as he learned to allow his imagination to light his way. If you'd care to get a taste of the latest movie which is now being powered by the forces of Disney, you can catch a quick trailer here. Oscar Wilde opined in his 1889 essay The Decay of Lying that, "Life imitates Art far more than Art imitates Life", and I would agree in the case of this epic drama. Perhaps my observation finds solid ground in Oscar Wilde's opinion of our tendencies toward imitation of art, because in the art lies our nebulous purpose to exist from day to day. A very deep thought - I know....bear with me for a few more lines, please. Skywalker's plight wouldn't have come to pass if he weren't bored out of his mind working on a dustball like Tattoine. Skip to further in the story where he finds the tools of his trade, masters them and proceeds to prove himself. Here is where I find difficulty in articulating the feeling I have that connects the artist to a warrior spirit. I see Luke as the artist with tools of his trade and Vader, even the Emperor as his public enemies number one & two.
We see him overcome the adversities to his purpose in finding himself in his art when he finally realizes how to work with the force rather than against it.
Upon my reflection of these thoughts I think the takeaway here is to learn how to wield the brush and my digital stylus effectively. I must also have a strong command of my tools and abilities to be successful as an artist. I should have something concrete outlining the direction I want my art to take, and have a solid understanding of what it is I'm offering. To do this I've gotta get zen with myself and forget about any feelings of adversity or high competition. As defined by the ever-popular Wikipedia: "War is a state of armed conflict between autonomous organizations." In this case and in the great city of Calgary it appears that the artist might actually be thriving in their "force" according to the Job Bank website posted by the government of Canada, 'For Creative And Performing Artists, over the 2013-2022 period, job openings (arising from expansion demand and replacement demand) are expected to total 37,167 and 33,604 job seekers (arising from school leavers, immigration and mobility) are expected to be available to fill the job openings.' These findings leave me with a rather satisfactory feeling somewhat more buoyant than one filled with waging war on companies that may or may not appreciate the value of those with the midiclorians for creative talent. Like Luke I think it is helpful for me to find that warrior spirit that I might channel the energy it helps me focus into more constructive and imaginative directions.
So. Is art a war we wage among our fellow artists? Is it a battle we fight on a 'work-for-hire' basis for big business? Or, are we just in love with a Shakespearean tempest of drama beset with all the contrasting factors that make our art - our craft....our very profession grow?
My challenge to you not just for today, but the rest of this week and beyond is to get in touch with your inner zen and find that power you hold within to sketch your future.
"My journey becomes an adventure when I let imagination light my way."