Come a long way, baby

Me that is. Today this is all about me and the realization that I am finally proud of how far I’ve come. Proud, for this moment.

Back in 2007 I created a clothing line with monsters sewn from odd fabric scraps. People seemed to like them, so I kept going. Gradually the sewing got better, the designs cuter and the screenprinting looked far more professional than when I started. I took this as “practice makes perfect” (or maybe just “better than before”) and kept going because I could. I didn’t really feel a sense of pride or accomplishment for the sewing. And actually still got down because I figured I really needed to do much much better.

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After a while, as the demand for the tees tapered off, I decided to try something new. I’ve sinc developed a line of jewelry that encompassed my love of nature and my collection of vintage jewelry. I’ve also started to record the little imaginary adventures that we encounter while on our stick finding adventures.

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The stories came easily, as did most of the jewelry. But Illustrating the stories was something new. I had never really done that before, and in my opinion, I really didn’t do it well. I drew for fun, but never to show anyone. This was when I realized I should have paid more attention in art class. (Note to highschool me: just cuz you want to be an astronaut doesn’t mean you should ignore them when they talk about dirt. All of it really will be important one day.)

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At this point my daughter’s art had progressed drastically, and was truly incredible to me. I definitely shared it more than my friends cared to see. I was proud, but possibly also a little jealous. It frustrated me that she had no formal training and it was only her dedication to keep trying that she was able to improve. I finally asked her what exactly she did to get do good, and the smarty-farty just said “practice”.

We’ve told her this for years, back when she didn’t think she was good enough, so I really should have expected this response. And there’s that pride again. Proud that the kid actually listened, stuck to it, and accomplished something so great.

Whether it was that pride, jealously, or mad determination, I started sketching whenever I could. I drew whoever was sitting in front of me, sorry for that Guelph office mates… I Doodled faces onto monsters in magazines, while on my break… I even googled other drawings and attempted to recreate them. That being said, I actually think this is the best method of learning. Copying teaches me drawing techniques I never learned in school. And this got my hand eye used to converting what my eye was seeing.

After months and months…. And months of this, I think I am finally where I hoped to be.

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More improvement is always a goal….
But for today, for this moment, I’m kinda proud of how much better these drawings are looking. Note to anyone out there: Practice Everyday!

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