New Piece: Emotions on Paper

A4 Piece, Graphite on Paper, 3 Hours

A4 Piece, Graphite on Paper, 3 Hours

Taking a well deserved break from continual work this week and wanting to do something fun, this intense looking lady sprung from the pencil around midnight last night.

As with most things, inspiration strikes at the most inappropriate time so I risked a sleep deprived shift in order to batter this one out.

All in all it took around 3 hours to complete and she appears to be a lot moodier than my usual ladies. Might have to do with the lack of rest or could be due to my partner being away for 1 week as of yesterday. He’s currently pretending to be a proper scientist in Spain documenting some local Geology, ( or fancy rocks to you and I).

And as much as I am enjoying my freedom, (i.e. being able to eat the same bad meal three nights in a row), one thing I know your drawing does is show you how you can really be feeling.

I’ll be trying to keep it perkier for the next few days, which is just as well as I have a few commissions to complete, and keep you all up to date with any sneaky behind the scene sketches on anything exciting I’ll be working on.

Keep your eyes peeled!

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Life Drawing and Getting Back Into It.

As with any creative person, I can be guilty of procrastinating. A lot.
Its okay once in a while but when you can’t remember the last time you took time to draw someone from real life, you know somethings wrong.
Life drawing is a great skill to hone as it helps train you to draw what your eye sees and not what your mind thinks. And trust me, it is a lot trickier than drawing from a photograph.

This week, in the spirit of New Year; New You, I decided to kick the laziness and go back to life drawing classes.
I found a quaint little session on a Tuesday evening, close to where I live. Its unpretentious and non-threatening, and also has the added bonus of being in a pub. Good for loosening up with a sneaky Jaeger and coke.

My first session back was good and bad. I enjoyed getting back into the flow, but knew I was extremely rusty. They started with a few 2 minute poses, which help you warm up your skills, then moved onto 3 20 minute poses. These were more fun to do as you could focus more on details but I still wasn’t fast enough to capture everything I wanted! Though I can’t imagine posing naked for any amount of time, let alone in one position for over 20 minutes…

In order to keep it up each week and fight against my extreme laziness, I’ve decided to keep a blog of my progress and what I would like to work on.

Heres my extremely raw drafts from my first week, hopefully I’ll see some improvements as the weeks go on:

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2 minute poses Graphite on paper

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2 minute poses Graphite on paper

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First 20 minute pose Charcoal on paper

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Second 20 minute pose Pencil on paper. Focused more on the head and face in this one.

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Third 20 Minute pose (with a lady this time) Took time drawing her body and figure which i then ripped out and had 5 minutes left to draw this. Turned out better than expected.

So if you have any comments on any improvements I could make or if you have any good techniques or tips I’d love to hear from you!

Hope you enjoyed these as much as I enjoyed making them!
Until next time

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Juggling; Not just for clowns.

Climbing mountains

Overcome challenges balancing work and fun by doing what you love. Reaching the summit of Ben Ime, Scotland, 2014.

 

 

Doing what you love as a career gives a massive sense of achievement. Everything you’ve worked towards has paid off. You’ve made it. But now is not the time to take a breather. You must keep on top of your fantastic new position by working, if possible, even harder than before.

But what does that mean for your private life?

As I have mentioned in a previous post, I currently work as a freelance 3D Architectural Visualizer. As well as a Game Artist. And in retail. And personalized portrait artist… See the recurring theme here? I’ll go in depth in a future post about what these careers entail, but essentially they have taught me to become somewhat accustomed to a finely tuned balancing act. I’ll try and share some tips that I’ve learned along the way.

1. Take a Break.

To begin with, working non-stop 24, with no breaks to eat, sleep or poop, is not the most efficient way to manage your time. Theoretically, using all the time available to you within a day might seem the logical way to go about it. Without rest your cognitive processes slow down making your work even harder. You become more irritable All work and no play makes Jodi a dull boy.

Climbing

Fooling around and visiting Der Klimm in Amsterdam

2. Have Hobbies.

Don’t ever give up something that you enjoy for a job. Other than helping take breaks and keeping mental levels on the up and up as mentioned above, this is also who makes you, you. If you are lucky enough to get a job in your field, chances are they hired you more than your clear cut c.v. Your personality and what makes you you are a major component of why you may have been employed. Losing hobbies and yourself, might make you unhappier as a person and either feel like you can’t keep up with your employment or maybe make an employer think they’ve made a mistake.
Going for a run, baking cakes, climbing mountains, even binge watching shows on Netflix (albeit in a lesser amount) will all help maintain the happiness balance in your life.

3. Look After Yourself.

All the things mentioned have been to help with your mental health, but another major factor is your physical body. Exercise, healthy eating, getting enough sleep. All these factors are essential in keeping a healthy body to supplement a healthy mind.

4. Be Passionate.

If you are wanting to become a master of the juggling act in taking on multiple projects, there is one way they’ll never coexist together. And that is if you don’t want to do it. If you are putting in your time, effort and your soul into some projects and not others, you’ll start to resent your time given to one, when it could go towards the other. So aim to only work on stuff that will give you a sense of achievement with clear cut advantages. Financial situations allowing.

5. Get Help.

And by getting help I don’t mean hiring other people to do work for you. But if you find yourself wasting your valuable time figuring something out when there could be someone with the knowledge within talking distance. Don’t be too proud and just admit you could use their help.It doesn’t make you any less of a person and if anything, it’ll give that person a nice boost that they could help you out.
6. Be Organised.

Im going to end on what might seem to be the most simple piece of advice; my calendar is my best friend. And I don’t mean the one on my kitchen wall. I use an electronic calendar that syncs automatically up with all my devices. This allows me to organise and see quickly everything I need to do in that day. Its great to get into the habit of waking up, checking what you need to do and setting out tasks that need to be completed on each day. Not only does it simplify everything in your own head, it also makes sure you don’t double book yourself for much needed appointments or even down time.

So there you have it. Although there are possibly MILLIONS of ways to help balance yourself in your busy life, these are the 6 major points that help me. If theres anything you think I should include or try, or any tips you can think of, please let me know and I’ll try and cover it in a future post! Also if anyone is helped by this post please don’t hesitate to let me know 🙂

Thanks for reading!

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A day in the life of a creative something something.

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ONE o’clock . Thats the time I left the office yesterday.  And if you’re thinking to yourself where do you sign up, let me clarify this. By one o’clock I mean one am. Leaving me looking this morning very much like a burst couch. With a cat on my face…

And I chose to do it.

To start, as like many of you out there, I’d like to classify myself as a creative person. And although that might conjure an image of drinking cinnamon lattes in dusky bookstores. Arguing who is really comparable to The Smiths and waiting for my flippant muse to grace me with her presence. The reality of it often is unemployment.
Or at least unemployment in your field.

I have been lucky enough to have been plucked a few months after graduating for a freelance Architectural Visualisation job. This is where I work on a monthly rolling contract for a 3D firm within the city centre of Glasgow.

I use the word lucky as thats pretty much all there is to it. If you know any one with talent, anyone at all, you’ll also know the struggle it is to get work.It doesn’t matter how s**t hot you are, how intuitive or unique. You have to assume that every one you are competing against is also as s**t hot, intuitive and unique. The difference between them and you being hired is how much you put yourself out there. And the luck you’ve got going for you at that time. Its all to do with contacts.

At university, I pretty much set myself up as a Yes (Wo)Man. And to anyone who’s read the novel by Danny Wallace or the motion picture starring Jim Carrey, you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about. (And if not theres definitely a strong recommendation that you do.) Essentially, you say yes to everything asked of you. Could you help me set up my class? Yes. Do you want to apply for this internship? Yes. Do you want to come for drinks with me and so and so? Yes.
People often forget that the last one is pretty much the most important. Talking to people and taking a break for yourself is one of the best things you can do to refresh your brain. People can’t live with work alone. You can also never be sure when you could meet someone that could change your life. Professionally or otherwise. Now when it comes to the rest, even if you don’t know how to do something or aren’t confident is doing so. The saying yes forces you to do it. You’ll learn. You’ll wing it. The worse that can happen is that you chime it down to a bad experience. But its an experience none the less.

Now staying till 1 in the morning because someone asked you to help out isn’t exactly ideal. But it is so rewarding. Not only do you get browny points with the higher ups (and working in freelance, where you can get let go at any minute, this is probably extremely important…), but you also get the learning experience and the chance to push your creative self to its limit.
If I never stayed late last night, I wouldn’t have woken up with the standard of work I produced this morning. And although you can be tied up with delivering deadlines and appeasing clients. Last night I took a risk, out with office hours, to try someone a little different with my image. A little bit more me. Because lets face it, thats what they hired me for.
And other people were willing to help me do it. All because I had stayed late to help them.
The risk paid off this morning with the client being extremely happy with what I had created for them. Although what I produced is extremely confidential so unfortunately I can’t share with you at this time. Taking this risk probably ensured more work from them in the future. And left me with what all creative people live for; pride in my work.

And thats pretty much all there is to it.

If anyone has experienced love for their work or a bad experience in this industry I’d love to hear it! Just leave a comment for me below.

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