Sunday, March 4, 2012

Inspiring Artists

For many, many years I was told I could not draw.

I swallowed this idea whole. I ate it up. Believed it and packed my pencils and pens and colors and markers and watercolors and anything that went along with any artistic endeavors possible...away.

Until I met Justin.

Justin is an amazing artist. He is talent beyond belief. I have never seen anyone put out a drawing, a pencil rendering or an inking with the skill, talent and time that he does. His graphic design is like the flash. Sometimes I wonder if he even looks, he's so fast and yet still so precise. His artwork is phenomenal. He is just such a stupendous artist, I truly look up to him. He did this Audrey Hepburn drawing for me in one night. It is my most favorite out of all the art he has done for me (and believe me, when you know an artist, there tends to be many).

Justin helped me to see that I not only have the ability, but I am a good artist. I just needed to learn the tools, skills and practice. He showed me drawings from his past where he had struggled too. He showed me pencils from high school and images and sketches from college. He not only helped me to see that this ability, though there, is a skill and like any great skill, as artists we must practice to be better.

The quote I will always remember he told me is a about a piano player.

"If I miss one day of practice, I notice it. 
If I miss two days, the critics notice it. 
If I miss three days, the audience notices it".
                                                 (Ignacy Jan Paderewski)

I have always admired Justin for his talents, but more than just sit back and admire him I have watched....

watched and learned...
  • Watched him and how he learns by taking classes and watching videos.
  • Watched him connect with other artists and learn by their examples as well as mistakes.
  • Watched him challenge himself by trying new things
  • Watched him practice and practice and practice.

I have always wanted to do more with my art. I drew in High School and I took Graphic Design in college. Yet, I still wanted to do more. I have always wanted to draw more. I have always wanted to get my art out there more. I always wanted to draw more. I always wanted to learn to draw faces. I always wanted to learn how to do digital art. I want to get my work out there. I would love to one day have a piece or some work in a gallery. I think I have even surpassed Justin in some ways I think, not artistically, but in getting my work out there and recognized.

  • I have started taking various classes from artists I admire.
  • I have made friends with and connected with other artists some we both know and many on my own
  • I have challenged myself my taking on new endeavors with my art and stretching out and risking and reaching artistically in ways I never have before.
  • I am posting my work on my Art blog, on Create Every Day, On Willowing, on Shwe Art Kit, and on Pinterest. 
  • I post my work in Twitter, Flickr, Picasa and Phootbucket
  • I post my Fashion drawings on SensaFashion
  • I have automated my Art blog to repost into a special Facebook page just for my art
  • I have quite the following in quite the many places and I just shake my head in disbelief the more and more it grows
  • I have joined various art groups on Linked In that inspire and encourage my work
  • I am like the pianist, I now practice daily...and I REALLY see it paying off.

Yet, though I see it my work and my friends I am staying with say "How neat and wow." The emphasis didn't hit me until tonight. Tonight I was treated with a special gift. A love language gift. One of my love languages is affirmation and appreciation. A dear friend I met in Brave Girls, Bea,  re-pinned on of my recent pieces of art...

one of my faces...

and what board did she put it in???

I get an email when people re-pin my pins and her and 5 other people re-pinned my face I put up today...this one

when I saw that I started weeping for joy!!! Oh how my heart leapt with joy. WOW! Someone re-pinning your work on Pinterest gives it the potential to go Viral! It is like the Domino effect. One person pins, then another, then possibilities are endless. This one re-pin has inspired me to pin more of my work on Pinterest now!

ImagineFX has a Sketch a Day challenge I have been doing and while I don't do a small sketch each day, I do sketch or draw each day now. What a difference it has really made in my art! A year ago, I would NEVER have been able to sketch, draw or create a face such as this. Now, I am even challenged stronger because I don't have my light box which I was scared about leaving, but wow, look at what I can produce when I really push myself.

I am grateful to Justin for ego boosting my in my artwork and challenging me to where I could take the training wheels off my metaphoric bike and as scared as I was when he let go of the seat, I see now that I
can ride the bike without him holding on. Though it would be nice to have someone along the path like work out buddies, to inspire and encourage, but I guess sometimes we just need to see we don't need anyone holding the back end of the bike. We don't need any training wheels.  We just need to look inside ourselves and be our our worst critic and out own best cheerleader at the same time! :)

Thank you to Bea and other who challenge, encourage and re-pin my artwork, like it on Facebook and are always supportive of me through my artistic endeavors.

You can find Justin's artwork at