Lately I've been finding myself with good amount of free time on the job. The labs on campus don't seem to be very active during my shifts, so I tend to have an unusual amount of Nothing to do. Two of my favorite artists are Frank Cho and Marko Djurdjevic, so I was very happy to learn that both of them just happend to teach themselves most if not all of what they know. This is a route that I'd be more than happy to take, seeing as my current Work/Class schedual allows for it. I'd just like to ask all you fine artists out there about any recommendations you might have in regards to Self-Help/Teaching. I'm well aware of Loomis' / Hogarth's Books (and I'm happily waiting for the iPad to Drop so that I may Load them up with Ebooks). Seeing as I don't have Models readily available, Books would seem to be the best alternative. I'm interested in figurative work that emphasizes anatomy and human structure, ranging from the exaggerated/Idealized form of Comic books, to the ordinary simplified style one would find in a good amount of graphic novels.
but I fear I've typed too much..
Anyone have any good ideas ?
I seem to have trouble finding guidance, so I figured "why not guide myself?"
I taught myself by a) drawing image after image after image and b) looking at other artists' finished work. And that's it. If I could start again I'd probably take a more structured approach in terms of working through books and assigning myself exercises. If I'd have done that I think I would have got to my current level a lot sooner. The key thing is, though, keep drawing. A couple of hours a week won't help you much whatever approach you take.
I've been in a severe slump for the past year and I'm currently at the point where I get so frustrated with everything to the point where I can't finish anything. -anything-I find myself often doubting whether I should even pursue art at all, thoughts what become completely unacceptable when I come to my senses, ofcourse. I've notices that the most significant problem is that I am not learning anything anymore. As you can see by the last date on which I updates my Sketchbook, I've had this problem for what is becoming a long time now, and I'm starting to feel somewhat paralyzed. I often find myself becoming very frustrated with the mechanics of what i'm doing rather than learning anything from it. This is where guidance would be great. I find myself having trouble knowing what to take from any given subject as far as the learning process in concerned. I want to be able to take an analytical view to what I'm drawing, as well as take something important from every thing I do. I'd like to learn to 'reactivate' the learning processes, as well as learn to look at things in a way that allows for an almost 'mathematic' way of learning.
does that make any sense?
Unfortunately such a method doesn't exist, nor could it possibly.
First, you need to want to do this. There's no magic solution to that. If you don't want to do it you can't make yourself, so don't try. You could attempt to regain some motivation by studying other artists' work and thinking about what you want to achieve, but at the end of the day if that's not doing it then think about doing something else.
Second, you need to finish everything you do. It's not coincidence that you're not learning if you're not finishing. I know some people disagree with me but if your aim is to learn then every time you start something and leave it unfinished then you've failed. You've wasted your time and you've learned nothing. So finish your work, whether it be a sketch or a full-blown painting. There's no excuse for not doing.
I know only too well that sometimes it's difficult to finish a piece. I've been plagued by self-doubt all the time I've been doing art. I get to a stage where I'd rather hit myself in the face than carry on with the half-finished atrocity that's masquerading as a painting. In fact, I have done. That's never stopped me finishing, though.
I haven't mentioned the more formalised learning because to be honest I'm not qualified, because I haven't done it myself. Some others will be able to help you out, but only if you manage to motivate yourself. If you can't sit down a finish a sketch then a work plan based on book study sure isn't going to last long.
Last edited by Baron Impossible; February 5th, 2010 at 12:57 PM.
At first, as we learn, we make fast progress. The more talented we are, the faster the progress. Everyone notices a kind of thrill to it. Then there comes a time when we are heading towards the next layer of complexity, and we either stop progressing or actually need to get a little worse than we were. And this time, to someone who is addicted to fast progress, can make us doubt if we can ever improve. At this stage, people give up, or they try to force their way through and burn out.
This is entirely ordinary. It happens whenever we learn anything new.
The cure is to learn to practice for the practice, to enjoy drawing even when we are not progressing, even when we are getting worse. And the easiest way to do that is to be willing to draw a lot of bad drawings.
So, rather than suggesting any more technical things... you've already got material that tells you most of what you need to know... I suggest drawing. Drawing a lot. Buy 2 500 page blocks of printer paper, and aim to fill them just with minute sketches in the next year. Not detailed drawings, just sketches of things around you like pens, grapefruit, chairs, shoes, noses etc.
And, however good or bad the sketches are, once you've finished them, never look at them again. Throw them away.
Of course, continue drawing more serious studies, and so on, but have a place in your art where you are able to be bad.
Last edited by term8or; February 5th, 2010 at 02:44 PM.
You really have to sit down and figure out what you're getting from art today and what you're hoping to get from it in the future. Otherwise, you'll wake up one morning, find that 10 years have passed and you don't even have a portfolio to shop around. Make some concrete plans. What do you want out of this? How do you expect to get there?
It's occasionally nice to bite off more than you can chew, too. There is no motivator quite as good as some horrible dread that you're not going to make deadline or that you'll fuck up and embarrass yourself in front of the client/editor/everybody.
Maybe you're driving yourself into too much "learning" and taking away the pleasure of creating 3D stuff on a flat piece of paper? Your drawing is pretty good already, so don't force learning on yourself. Find pleasure in drawing, and learning will come to you on its own and even without your conscious effort. It'll come to you. Getting critique of course helps too.
Get some inspiration, do some Character of the Week, environment of the week, or whatever you might find interesting. If you like drawing chicks, draw chicks. Just get drawing. Enjoy it.
If you've got the time and money, why not take a course/class at a Community College or something. The semester already started, so maybe wait until summer time, but sometimes one can just sit in on a class. My friend brings her friend to class a lot. she just does her own thing, reads a book, or sketches in her sketchbook, but I'm sure you could find an instructor that would you let you hang out, especially if you know someone already in the class. That's an odd approach, but I don't know, My instructor is pretty cool, don't know about how art teachers usually are.
And if that doesn't work, do the obvious Draw every day and night a little bit or alot, learn what you need to and want to learn, find out what you don't know and try to find the information . Then try it yourself until you get a hang of it, and keep going from there; applying everything you've already learned.
~"With a little hope, and alot of try, anything is possible."~
~"The harder You work, the better life gets."~
~"The pain doesn't last, but the gain will last forever."~
~"Fear is my courage." ~Mr_S_14