Do You Recognize Me?
[media-credit id=3 align="aligncenter" width="518"][/media-credit]Did ya…miss me? I know it’s been quite a long time since I posted and it’s not that I didn’t haven anything to say though. It’s just that I have been floating around a bunch of thoughts lately. Sounds like a good thing huh? Well, have to say, I am not so sure if it is. I’m not able to capture my thoughts the way I want, so I’ve been scribbling lots of things down, but not really finishing them all. You could say I’m puzzling a bunch of pieces together and because I haven’t puzzled enough yet, I’m searching for that moment till I have this “click” and things fit again. This explains the lack of columns from my side here.
As I was going through my folder of drafts, I found an older column hidden on my laptop that I published last year. I decided to re-write it as I added bits of the old version in other columns. Can’t stalk you with old stuff now, can I? So what did I ramble about? I shared my thoughts about my drawing style and how I recognized other artists by their words and art without realizing the same thing was happening to me as well. Some artists simply have a certain element in their style that you immediately recognize. This can be in the use of colors, in the way they draw their characters, in their compositions and so on.
When I started to draw more, I just kept drawing and picking subjects that appealed to me the most and then I just kept drawing again. I never really took a step back to just stare at what I really did. My drawings from the past consisted mostly of copying images from either Disney or Anime series. Anime wasn’t that popular when I was younger, so I have to thank my uncle for introducing me to anime as his drawing style is heavily influenced by it. Disney and anime have their similarities, but the biggest difference that pops in my mind now is that anime doesn’t have to be cheery. The story lines can be deep and mysterious; blood can be involved as well. Whereas Disney is happy, cheery and always with an “and they lived happily ever after“.
You always hear that artists need to find their voice, their own unique style, to separate them from all the others. I’ve never consciously searched for my drawing style. It kind of developed on its own, which is pretty cool when I think about it. People who know me on Facebook see a variety of styles float by and even though I keep experimenting with different ways of drawing, people do recognize it’s me. It does make me wonder how my style would have developed if I attended an Art school, but hey, I’m not going to dwell on this as I do think that I have found my own uniqueness that hopefully shines through every piece of art I create, regardless the style I try out.
Have to say, by sharing work in progress pieces it really boosted my own motivation to draw even more and lower my own perfectionism. Seriously, sometimes I do hesitate to show you guys my unfinished work. I can be such a perfectionist at times, but I refuse to let my perfectionism get in the way of my own growth. Quite often I always see things I would do differently as soon as I finish a painting. It’s very easy to raise the bar to a point where your perfectionism takes the fun out of things and ruin it all. You’re always learning and because of this, things will never be “perfect”.
Some people asked me how I ended up with the style I have now. To be honest, I don’t know. I suppose it’s a bundle of things. Most of you know that I’m a dreamer and I love to create stories, so I think that’s why my work leans towards dreamy, not too realistic, whimsical art where all is magically possible. And a big change in the way I think about drawing is that it doesn’t have to be technically difficult. I believe that the smallest gesture can leave the biggest impact. I like this in my drawings as well. The simplest of brushstrokes can evoke the strongest of feelings. A simple cupcake can bring the biggest smile. And that’s what matters the most to me. Everything you see are glimpses of what is floating around my imagination and every painting is like a journey. It is a journey that often starts with existing images and knowledge. Then it floats through my imagination where it simmers and changes. Finally it comes back alive on paper through my brushes and paint. In the end, no matter what appears on paper…it’s a little piece of me.
Now. I hope that the whole “a little piece of me” bit didn’t sound too disturbing…
Wanna read more rambles about TJ? Please visit her blog A Look in a Creative Mind.
Tags: career as illustrator, drawing, flowy hair, never done learning, ponderings, TJ Lubrano, watercolor art, writing