New Habit Old Resolution

“You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.” ~ Unknown

I’m at it again, trying to get into the habit of keeping up with a sketchbook. If you’ve read previous posts before then you’ll know that I’m horrible at this. I have over a dozen half or quarter finished sketchbooks filled with nothing but scribbles…yes, literally scribbles. Not sketches, not doodles but scribbles of indecipherable ideas that amounted to nothing, most of which look like a child had a temper tantrum with a pencil. (Truthfully, most of them are actual temper tantrums.) I have fits in my sketchbook when I can’t get an idea from my imagination out onto paper. People assume that drawing is this calm and relaxing activity that always brings peace and joy. IT’S NOT! It’s painful and excruciating when you have an image in your head that you want to draw but all you can get out is scribbles of circles. So I often just avoid the whole thing altogether. I find it exhausting.

But I’m at it again. I stumbled across the quote above and thought about how I often come across the saying that if you want to get better as an artist you must draw everyday. Confession: I don’t draw everyday. With pointillism, I draw out my image and from there I’m actually inking for two, three, eight, 14 days on one piece depending on the size. So I spend way more time inking than actually drawing. You would think that the inking was the most difficult part with the time consumption and tediousness but for me it’s actually laying out the drawing. I’ll probably have to dig into my own psyche to figure out why it exasperates me so but at the moment all I know is that it does, despite the fact that I really do have a love for lineart. Because of that love I want to get better at it. So I’ve set myself on this journey of cultivating the habit of doing at least one decent line drawing a day, Monday thru Friday, totaling five drawings a week with Saturday and Sunday as make up days if I miss one. As of this week, so far, I’ve gotten three done. They’re not spectacular but as they say practice makes perfect. 😊

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Pen and ink artist inspired by Nature, Beauty, Spirit and Song.

9 thoughts on “New Habit Old Resolution”

  1. I’ve also read that ‘practice if you want to be a good artist’ thing but, while I recognise it may have originally had some merit in it before people began ‘finding themselves’ for want of a better expression, now I regard it as a platitude. You’re already a good artist and it’s not practice that will make you a better one, but something within yourself that will lead you there. And have a look at your own definition of ‘better’ compared with other people’s definition of it, I suspect you’ll find they are different.

    Your art is great as it is, for who and what you are now. One day in the future, you may have different needs and then that will change your art in the same way that it changes you.

    I love your art – as it is. x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. “You’re already a good artist and it’s not practice that will make you a better one, but something within yourself that will lead you there.”
      Thank you Val for your kind words. Just yesterday I was pondering whether I am already good but couldn’t see it because I keep looking at the works of others and comparing my work to theirs. It’s a disservice to myself by not letting my own style and technique unfold naturally. Instead, and I hate to admit it, what I’m probably really doing is striving to get better at imitating someone else’s work. That was actually painful to type but I think it’s true for me. When you said “And have a look at your own definition of ‘better’…” it really made me sit down and think about what do I really mean by “better”. I realized that what I probably really mean when I say “better” is that I want my work to be more like so and so’s work or more like such and such’s style. And this probably isn’t healthy for my creativity.
      I think it might be a good idea for me to spend some time NOT looking at the work of others and just focus on my own. Whether consciously or subconsciously, I spend far too much time comparing myself and my work to others.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I agree: being an artist is hard… but if it was easy, it wouldn’t be so exciting 🙂 Drawing daily helps a lot indeed, I saw that during drawlloween. Unfortunately I’m a perfectionist, and I spend too much time on each piece.. I should learn how to do quick sketches! (sigh).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m a perfectionist as well as very detail oriented too which is why I try to focus on line drawing without adding much tonal value otherwise what’s suppose to be a simple drawing turns into a full blown work of art. I’ve always admired the speed at which sketch artists can capture with their pens and pencils. I wish I had that skill but I guess my brain just doesn’t work like that. I’m a strict “drawer”, for lack of a better term, rather than a sketcher.


  3. I agree that it’s not the easiest task. I sometimes have to pump myself up to pump something out. Or entrust that an accountability partner will keep me in line.

    I do think that once you establish a rhythm, things flow a little easier. Creativity breeds creativity.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, finishing a sketchbook is another story. I have no problem finishing a journal within 2-3 months but I have yet to complete a sketchbook, and I’ve been drawing for some years. I’m striving to change that this year. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

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