Last November (holy timewarp Batman, was that almost a year ago??) I posted a retrospective of my artistic styles and mentioned that right before I had kids I was making a little money painting portraits of peoples’ horses. I thought maybe now with the Wacom tablet I could get back into doing that, but in a digital medium.
But I’ve realized modern technology has made that too easy to be profitable. Thanks to the magic of Photoshop, no painting skills are needed to turn a plain old photo…
…into greeting-card-worthy art…
…in just a few minutes. Why would folks pay for something they could do so easily themselves?
No, if I’m going to make a living at this I’ll need to create my own unique style, something that can’t be duplicated just by adding a few filters in some art program.
Right now my artistic hero is Hayao Miyazaki of Studio Ghibli — his breezy, joyful animation first caught my attention in “Kiki’s Delivery Service” and absolutely won my heart in “My Neighbor Totoro.” I watch his movies with a kind of wistful admiration, studying his images, trying to figure out exactly what makes them so appealing, hoping someday I can be even half the artist that guy is. BUT, his style is his own, and I need to find mine. I have a basic idea for a Christmas card I’d like to create this year; it’s the sort of design concept that will allow for lots of playing around with different looks. I’m hoping by the time it’s finished I’ll have a better idea of where I want to go with my art. Also, handing out Christmas cards with your own artwork on them is practically like handing out business cards and free samples, right? That’s the theory, anyway.
Have I mentioned how unbelievably good it feels to be back in the artistic saddle? Even the dreams I have at night are tossing me ideas!
It is good.