A few weeks have passed since my last post, which gave me time to consume tons of information. In this post I will use the acquired knowledge to build myself a system for becoming a better artist. I already own a lot of art books and bought many online courses, but for some reason I never stick with one resource for long. I want to work on my own projects rather than spending that time learning. So my goal is to find a way to get a balance between learning and personal projects and figure out a way for structured learning.
From what I have gathered the three essential parts for my art education are knowledge, structure and community. Knowledge in this context means, figuring out what I want and why I want to do it. Knowing this provides the basic foundation for everything else. This is what keeps you on the path during difficult times. Additionally knowing what you want let’s you reverse engineer a path to get there. Structure includes what to learn and when to learn it. This is where courses and art books come in. In the draftsmen podcast, Stan mentions Radiorunner’s “Curriculum for the Solo Artist”, which gives a solid outline for an art education. And lastly we have community which is the biggest advantage of a traditional art school. Having peers around you to push each other and to give feedback is invaluable. I think this is what has been missing the most in my process so far. Even though I would label myself as an introvert, I still get a ton of motivation by being surrounded by like minded people.
Ok so let me apply what I just wrote to myself:
What do I want to do?
- I want to be able to draw the images that are stuck in my head.
- I want to bring stories to life with my illustrations.
- I want to pursue drawing full time, while keeping my independence.
- I want to work on personal and on collaborative projects.
- To be more concrete: I want to work on comics, illustrations for books and many other projects like designing skateboard decks.
Why do I want to do it?
- I feel like art is a way to finally express myself.
- It gives me a sense of fulfilment like nothing else.
- I just feel an urge to draw the images in my head.
I know from previous experience that I don’t like rigid structures. I have been through university (quite successfully actually), but I didn’t like the process at all. I also tried joining Art-WOD, whose idea I really like, but the pacing was too fast for me. Knowing myself I need a more intuitive approach with a sense of accountability. For example I am currently into figurative drawing, which is why I’m currently attending a life drawing class and doing the figure drawing course from proko. Depending on my current projects I’ll see which area needs the most improvement. In addition, I also want to start doing master studies. The part that’s currently missing is accountability. One way to solve this would be to go through courses together, which goes hand in hand with community. Another way could be to post regular updates about my learning progress. For example posting weekly updates about my progress and what I have studied. Hm… I think I might actually try this.
This is where I struggle the most. I don’t have any artists in my small circle of friends. So a way to find like minded people could be to find local art classes in my area and look online for communities to join. If you reading this are interested in learning together, feel free to send me an email or connect via instagram.
Side note: Besides the excellent draftsmen podcast, I found the video by Jeff Whats on “How to Train to Become a Successful Working Artist” incredibly helpful and inspiring. He has a very honest way explaining the art journey.
After all this text, let me show a current project I am working on right now: