Thursday, January 21, 2010

What Inspired Me Today?

My good friend and colleague, Cynthia Sheppard, (her artwork above) inspired me to experiment on my drawing techniques and to dabble in a variety of drawing styles and subjects for good practice. Cynthia is a remarkable Fantasy Illustrator and am a big fan of her work. We briefly talked about art and drawing today at work and from that brief moment I learned that I should not limit myself to only one style or subject and I should probably use a combination of different techniques, focus on a different subject matter, and basically just try something new and out of the ordinary. This is probably a great idea to loosen up those drawing muscles a bit, right?

As an artist, you've always got to keep your artwork as fresh as the day it was created. Here are some examples of the things I've done to keep myself motivated:

1. Finding Inspiration - exposing yourself to many different drawing styles or taking art classes or even just walking outside and looking at nature.

2. Setting Your Own Goals - set yourself up with a personal project and a designated due date and recreate something that you see everyday. Maybe it's redesigning an existing children's book cover, your favorite magazine, or even your favorite commercial product to get those ideas rolling...

3. Learn Different Things - try using a different medium for a change, try drawing a different subject matter and get out of that comfort zone. If you're the one who loves to draw cute and fuzzy characters, maybe try drawing something gorey and scary for a change!

4. Work Those Drawing Muscles - very important! Practice, practice, and practice... Draw something at least once a day even if it's just a rough sketch on a piece of napkin.

So, what do you guys do for motivation and how do you keep your artwork fresh? Would love to hear your thoughts!

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Blogger Art Fan Ako said...

Wow! Good pointers here on inspiration. Looks like you're inspired for sure.

8:35 PM  
Blogger Susan Beth Studio said...

This is gorgeous work, very inspiring, thanks for sharing your friend's wisdom! Good advice - I think it's important to stay fresh, and never stop learning, but I have to say - all the great illustrators past and present - a few who come to mind immediately are, from the past: Norman Rockwell & Arthur Rackham, and contemporary:Greg Call and Brett Helquist, and too many others I can't recall 'cause it's almost midnight! But they all have very recognizable styles which they manage to keep fresh. I've always heard this is important so publishers know what to expect and your style isn't all over the place. Is your friend suggesting that an illustrator should develop different styles to illustrate different genres? Just want to make sure I get it! Thanks so much for the info. I'm trying to stay fresh by getting out of my comfort zone and trying to learn photoshop!

8:57 PM  
Blogger Michelle Lana said...

HI Beth! Thank you for commenting. Not so much that you need to develop and master a different style, but just to try something new. You'll never know down the road you'll be able to use that style you've learned and incorporate it into your artwork again. Trying new things and learning new things is always good. Thanks for stopping by!

4:33 AM  
Blogger Michelle Lana said...

That is awesome by the way that you are learning photoshop! that is great! cheers to you!

4:34 AM  
Blogger Michelle Lana said...

Thank you also for commenting Art Fan Ako!

4:48 AM  
Blogger 頭髮 said...

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12:53 AM  
Blogger A.J. Bell said...

I go running to stay fresh and get the creative juices going. I'm able to move my mind back a little and all of these ideas and concepts come rushing in. Great work by the way. It's nice to dabble in different styles and you've obviously made good use of exploring.

10:16 AM  
Blogger marry said...

Blogs are so informative where we get lots of information on any topic. Nice job keep it up!!

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3:31 AM  
Blogger 剩沒底天 said...

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5:46 PM  
Blogger 時尚 said...

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10:15 AM  
Blogger DoodleDesign said...

Thanks 4 the tips. I love your art style. Even though I've been painting as long as I could remember, I sometimes got so unmotivated and felt uninspired. Your tips really helped. Best wishes from me.

4:07 AM  
Blogger Abz said...

love it! such a great blog!

11:18 PM  

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