It's great to be back. Based on your comments, I know you missed the videos - and I certainly missed making them. To address this break in continuity, this video deals with the idea of art-making as habit. Just like exercise or practicing a musical instrument, it's all about consistent practice.
Feeling blocked up? Lacking motivation? Deciding what to draw can sometimes seem harder than actually drawing it. Hopefully this video will put the challenge in a different light, and get your stylus moving again.
Do you ever feel like you're treading water? You're stgnating, while the rest of the art community is progressing at lightning speed? You're not alone.This video is a little detour from the standard ctrl+paint technique videos to talk about inspiration, mindset, and 'getting better'. Ultimately, we're all experiencing this in one form or another, so it's worth talking about. Remember: even professionals feel sub-par a fair amount of the time. Art is mind game. UPDATE: It's been really, really great hearing these responses. Art is one of those challenges that we all take on personally - and can feel isolated by the effort. Knowing that everyone else is wrestling with similar issues can be a big help.
So keep the conversation going -- It's an important one to be a part of. Additionally, reader "Jonathan" reminded me of a fantastic series of videos by the radio host Ira Glass on storytelling and inspiration. He's the host of This American Life, and has a lot of experience fighting through the self doubt and frustration involved in creative work. It's definitely worth watching.
Visit any large book store and the 'art technique' shelf will be filled with titles like "How to Draw ___ (dragons, zombies, vampires, cars, etc.)" -- this is deception. Instead of useful instruction, this is merely a scheme to sell books. Want to learn the real secret of how to draw anything? Observe, and practice. This video shows a versatile approach to learning any kind of new subject-matter. As you progress in your art career you'll find that drawing isn't a set of individual recipes, it's a single way of working. When I set out to draw a dragon I use the same techniques that I would use to draw a fire hydrant. Hopefully this video will empower you to tackle the subject matter your're having trouble with - and to ignore the "1,2,dragon" shelf at the book store.
Painting is all about controlling your mindset. You can easily become your own worst enemy by tensing up, being overly critical, and worrying about your mistakes. Learning to control these feelings is a huge part of learning to paint. In this video I'll show you a drill that helps you come to terms with 'professional detachment'. This practice of 'letting go' will give you a thicker skin, and make critique easier to hear. Being able to throw away your work is essential for all artists, but it is especially useful for professionals.
The difference between a "good painting day" and a "bad painting day" often comes down to mindset. This video shows a simple but effective warm up exercise to start painting with the right mindset. If athletes and musicians begin each session with stretching and warm up exercises, why aren't you? Painting is a physical and mental exercise, and you benefit from a bit of limbering up before you work.