I read a quote by Timothy Albee the other day that really struck me in a positive way. He writes the creative really well. Here is a quote from what I read in one of his books:
“Art teaches one to think for one’s self. It is the actual practice of being confident that one is capable of finding one’s own answers. It is the essence of adaptability. It is the life focus of knowing through experience that the unknown is but a path to something far more amazing than any human can imagine.”
I’ll dissect this quote as it relates to my understanding and to me. While thinking of one’s self can bring on a host of other issues, as an artist, you spend a lot of time reflecting on yourself and your skills. Being creative requires you to take an idea and develop it to something tangible. I must have confidence that I can perform and solve problems and overcome challenges as they arise. Any piece of work presents a set of challenges that must continually be thought through and resolved like how the character would look from this or that angle and what angle best depicts the desired result I’m looking for. I have no one to go to get a definitive answer. I must come up with the answer on my own. While I can ask others, they can only offer their opinion.
Over time, I’ve tried to overcome my desire for control and to achieve perfection. I’ve always had a hard time getting my head around abstract art. I’ve always considered it a waste of time. Now, I see it as someone truly having the ability to freely create with no barriers. I’m still a little reserved in this area but I’ve seen some amazing work done in character creation where the artist doesn’t really know what they are making and just let the forms take shape based on a very limited amount of information. Their results were truly amazing!
Finally, I tend to like to predict a direct path to my end result (my control issue in full force). Before going digital in my drawing, I was not the type to ball-up and throw away a drawing I didn’t like. I felt that everything (every render) had a purpose along the line of creating something good. Now with Photoshop and my Wacom tablet, I can create different attempts all in different layers and view the progression from one organized location. I can even pull favorable elements from each layer to use in the final render. Boy have we come a long way.
Frank Freeman is a freelance artist, trainer and CEO of Artistic Gurus, Inc. a training company that focuses on how-to videos in the 2D, 3D, Traditional Arts, Comics, Anime and Manga fields. http://www.artisticgurus.com/ or http://www.rentartvideos.com/