Sshhh it is a Secret!
I’ll share you my secrets, if you share yours.
Today I shall tell you a bit about what I experienced when I started asking around question regarding pricing, tools to use. It seems that openly talking about prices or the way one works is still sort of taboo.
I say sort of, because there are lots of sites packed with information on how to get started in the illustration world. To me, these individuals are the ones who decided to just share their knowledge and eventually they create a loyal fan base. People appreciate them for sharing their ‘secrets’ and knowledge.
However, when you ask more directly to an illustrator how they e.g. price paintings or what tools were used…chances are the answers are vague or not really useful. Of course I’m speaking in broad terms here, but sometimes it does feel like a lot of things are hidden in a box and not easily shared as it keeps an air of mystery and magic alive. Have to say that wandering around the Illustration World for a longer period of time, I know where to turn to if I need advice or help. This wasn’t the case when I first started blogging though.
Here I was. Started a blog and a whole world of sites packed with fun and cool illustrations emerged in front of my eyes. I wanted to know all about it (still do of course). So whenever I came across an illustrator that really interested or inspired me, I emailed. I was curious at pencils, paint, techniques and paper; so what better way to know this by just asking right? Well, I bumped into a bunch of vague answers, like ‘Oh, I use pens with waterproof ink.’, ‘I use structured paper. You can use most paper with a rougher surface’…
No brands or tips, unless I asked it more specifically. When I did this, very often I didn’t get an answer. Call me silly, but I didn’t think to use waterproof ink when I decided to use watercolors on a whim. I just drew, painted and then thought ‘Whyyyy are the lines dissolving?! Stupid black wash. Annoyance’
With the way I drew and painted back then, it wasn’t really a big issue, but I quickly figured out new way to use watercolors and then the bleeding lines became an issue. So I started to do my own research on pens and paper and just bought a few things to get started. It wasn’t until I started to share my own thoughts of brands that I got more comments from others on what they used.
So is it just a case of sharing your knowledge first, before others are willing to share theirs?
Personally, I just share my techniques and most of the things I know. The fact that you know how I draw and paint doesn’t mean you will copy exactly what I do. Every artist injects their own feelings in their work, their own uniqueness. This doesn’t have to stay with drawing of course. It can be easily applied to writing, cooking, baking and so on.
I believe I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again *coughs*…You take whatever techniques you find interesting, study it and make it your own. Knowledge makes it easier as you know what steps to take, but taking these steps doesn’t mean you will get instant success or that you will like the results. It’s a trial and error game and it involves a lot of research. In the end, you just have to take small risks, experiment and see what works best for you.
For more TJ Art and Ramblings, please visit A Look in a Creative Mind.
Tags: art secrets, art techniques, TJ Lubrano, venetian mask, watercolors