Saturday, January 23, 2016

Why Smart People Value Art

The layperson doesn't understand creative professions, because what creative people do is a luxury, not a basic physical need. Everyone needs a place to live. Everyone needs good health. People don't need television shows or amusing cartoons in the Sunday paper... do they?

The need creative professions fill is not a physical need, so the physically-minded masses don't value these careers as much as they do doctors and lawyers and accountants. But they want what creative people do. It enriches their lives. It makes them feel things.

Creative professions put people back in touch with themselves, open their minds to new ideas, give them distractions from the rough spots in life. A society risen above filling basic physical needs can focus on the higher, mental, spiritual, and emotional needs so often left unfilled. There are some people who still don't understand the importance of this. That's why creative professionals are admired, but not universally respected.

Anyone who knows how complicated the human body is can understand why doctors are necessary and valuable. Those who don't, think doctors are magical and godlike. It all comes down to understanding and understanding to knowledge.

Art is difficult for people to understand because it's tangled up in the intangible, in feelings and impressions, in memories and tastes. The higher a person's thoughts, the more likely they are to appreciate the need for art in their lives. The more intelligent a person, the higher their thoughts. Therefore, smart people value art.

The next time you meet someone who undervalues your work, downplays the need for it, or compares it to their child's hobby, realize the person is likely physically-minded and doesn't see the importance of art in his life. He's also not very smart. Later, you can draw an unflattering picture of him or write him into your novel as a villain.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

2016 Or Bust!

2015 saw me get an agent, have an art show, get a newer car (and sell my old one), create a really nice piece of Doctor Who fanart:

and start on my first project with my new agent: an adult coloring book with mermaids and water monsters entitled Dangerous Sea. Here are a few sketches done while I've been working on it.
dapper octopus

awkward sturgeon
woodstock seahorse

 These are just doodles compared to the full-page inked illustrations that'll be in the coloring book. I can't show the pieces from the book just yet, but you better believe I'll let you know when it's ready to hit shelves!

Last year my first blog post was on a theme: determination. This year I think it'll be about taking chances. I want to tackle my big goals without being afraid I won't finish them. So often I've procrastinated out of fear - fear it would take time, fear it would be too hard, fear I couldn't do it, fear I would mess up. These are silly fears.

My projects are worth the time. Nothing is too hard if I give myself enough time and practice to hone my skills. I can do it, with the time and the practice. (With ink the fear of messing up is very real, but it's still nothing Photoshop can't fix.)

My google searches for this project have been so great. Poseidon, celtic warrior, knife fight poses, great white shark, selkie, tidal pool, and so many mythical monsters I have trouble choosing. And if you want a big fancy taste of what my ink work looks like, check out my mermaid muse for Dangerous Sea.

Are you ready to tackle your projects in the new year? I'd love to hear about it.

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