You’re an artist, but why aren’t you making art?
I’ve noticed a number of artists recently that want to create, but have a million excuses why they can’t. Are these excuses valid, or are they just excuses?
New/emerging artists tend to have something I call “studio envy” when it comes to reasons not to create art or take that next step to becoming more professional. It happens when the new artist see photos of other established artists working in their incredible studios. Everything has it’s place, plenty of space and full of creative vibes. The new artist may look at these photos and begin to think, “I need to get a studio so I can be more professional.” They may also begin to believe that they won’t be able to work (on a professional level) without having a studio.
Trust me, I have seen my share of amazing studio spaces that my fellow artists work in. One in particular I am head over heels for because this artist has an actual swing in her studio! I LOVE swinging on swings! If I was going to build my perfect studio space I would definitely have to include a swing!
So what DOES my studio look like? Well let’s start with this, currently we are temporarily living with family. My so called “studio space” is our bedroom. I work sitting on our bed with my sketchbox easel on my lap while being propped up with pillows. I have my OttLite on the headboard leaning over my shoulder. Instead of wonderful pastel boxes full of colored pencils or some other pencil holders neatly arranging my pencils, I work from a divided plastic box filled with my colored pencil supplies. I have an artbin full of graphite supplies as well as some in my sketchbox easel. I use a pencil roll to hold all of my Staedtler pencils. My various papers and small supplies are stacked neatly on three small shelves. I use drawing boards of various sizes to hold my surfaces that I am currently working on. The smaller ones get placed on the shelves when I’m not working. My large one is behind a bookcase for safe keeping.
As you can see, I have extremely limited space! Not even a table to work on. I could have let that stop me, but why? There’s an old Marine Corps saying I learned from my niece when she was in the Marines. It’s a very simple statement: “Adapt and Overcome.” I have pretty much made that my motto in life. When things go wrong, adapt and overcome. I don’t have a studio or fancy equipment, then adapt and overcome. Use what I have, where I am and create. It’s as simple as that!
Adapt and Overcome! – repeat that to yourself!
So what other excuses do you have for not creating art?
Work with what you have! Even if you don’t have a full set of anything, you do have something, so use it! You don’t have the right kind of this or that? Use what you have for now and over time purchase small amounts of what you need. Color work too expensive right now? Then work in graphite! Graphite is probably the cheapest medium you could work in. A few pencils and some paper. Buy a cheap sketchbook and work away! Don’t let not having expensive supplies stop you! I began (after years of not doing anything art related) by drawing in a sketchbook. When I began to get interest in my work and commissions, I purchased the best quality drawing paper I could afford. You don’t have to have every single thing right now in order to create! Drawing in graphite will also be helpful. It will help you to gain perspective on tones and values. That will come in handy if you decide to make the move into color work. It will also strengthen your general skills if you eventually turn to painting. After all, you’ll need an initial sketch in order to paint. 😉
Time? Is that an excuse you have? You simply don’t have time?
Listen, wise people have told me many times over in my life, “If it’s important to you, you’ll make time for it.” That is so true.
Why not take your sketchbook to the couch when you’re watching T.V.? Maybe instead of playing that video game for hours, you could use a little of that time to create? Think about it. You can find the time to work on your art if you really want to work on your art. I’m a mom, a wife, and a we homeschool as well. Time is something I have very little of, yet I manage to work on my art. I find ways to make it work. It’s not always easy, but it gets done.
Any more excuses I may have missed? Anything? Well in case I did miss something I will provide this wonderful flow chart from Tumblr which will help you decide if you should make art.
So what are you waiting for? GO MAKE SOME ART!!
Until next time,