This one is gonna get a little personal. Its how I realized I wanted to be an artist. This image gives you the shorthand version of the specific moment when it hit me.
I’ve always loved drawing, ever since I could hold a pencil. My parents have home videos of me at around 2 years old falling asleep at the desk while drawing circles and squares. (There are multiple videos of this). My parents had a paint program on the computer before MS paint that I would play around with all the time. And I also played with ms paint. My dad was teaching my brother how to draw and I insisted he teach me too. As I grew older I never stopped drawing. But it never really occurred to me that this is what I could actually do with my life.
I started playing piano when I was 11. It turned out I was pretty good at it and was able to get into performing arts school for middle school and high school. It seemed like music was what I was going to do. But I liked so many things! I loved music, acting, drawing, movies, cartoons, comics, reading, writing, math (yeah, I enjoyed if for a while).
There wasn’t a certain movie that made me just “know” what I wanted to do with my life like most people. It happened one summer I went to CIY. Its a christian conference/camp held at christian colleges around the country for high school kids. I had gone before but this specific summer was in between 10th and 11th grade. I had brought my sketchbook and pencils with me and decided I was going to reflect each day with a drawing. One night while I was drawing for the day, I heard some of my fellow youth group mates singing a song. I’m terrible with names so I don’t remember what it was called but if you ask me in person I could sing it for you. It inspired me to draw an image for the song. I showed it to them and they wanted to have it up on stage with them as they performed the song they were singing in the talent show. It was really cool seeing someone else like my artwork and want to use it to share with other people.
The day after the talent show, the main speaker for the week says he had to get on his soapbox and share something with us. I think he actually stood on a box too. This wasn’t the normal time for schpiels to be made, but he had something important to say that he felt he really needed to share. He starts to talk about how some of us have really awesome creative talents. We can sing, write, draw, play music, etc. And if we are lucky to have that gift, we NEED to be using it. God gave us these gifts for a reason so we can’t hide these things and shove them off to the side. At that moment, I felt like he was talking directly to me. I never thought of my art as anything more than just something I do for personal fun. But my gift and passion was meant for more than just my personal gain. It was meant to be used and shared. Just like what just happened with my drawing and the song. I have a gift. This is what I’m meant to do.
I started sharing my art with more people, shared it with my youth group and youth leaders. Immediately they wanted to use my talents. I began to use my art to help people. I used it to deliver messages. I used it in church, I used it in school. It became the thing that I do and what people came to me for.
College was close, so I began to search into what I wanted to do with my art. I took all of the things that I loved to do (drawing, comics, movies, cartoons, music, acting) and discovered that what I wanted to do was right in front of me the whole time. ANIMATION! Everyone seemed to be growing out of cartoons but I never grew up. I knew that its people’s job to make these movies and cartoons. I had watched a bajillion behind the scenes dvds. So I found my college I wanted to go to, Ringling, and got cracking. Taught myself as much as I could about art, made a portfolio, and miraculously got in. Never thought I would make it in since I never had any art classes.
This story isn’t really over. I’m graduated now and I’m still striving to become the best artist I can be and use my gifts to their full potential. There are some exciting things in the works that hopefully I will be able to tell you about soon. God has been with me every step of the way and none of this would have happened without Him. I could talk for hours on how my life has been proof of that. Yes, I am already a focused and driven person on who fights for what they want. But I can honestly tell you that these things did not happen of my own doing.
In short, this one summer at camp, I found out my life purpose was to be an artist.
Day 6: Favorite book. uh... totally blanked on this one :(
I used to be all into reading everything until somewhere in highschool. Things got busy, then I got into the whole art thing and haven't really gotten back into books except for Art books. I've been so deep into visual stuff that books tend to make me sleepy now and its really hard for me to get into one unless its absolutely amazing. I know, I'm lame. maybe when life chills out for a bit I can get back into reading...
I've decided to participate in a 30 day drawing challenge! I've been needing an extra drawing boost, so hopefully this will help :)
Here is the challenge if anyone else wants to participate:
And here is my Day 1:
I did this in Sketchbook Pro. I'm still learning how to use the program but its really fun to use. Great for sketching! This is what I look like today. When you zip up that jacket its a Darth Vader Suit :)
I was trying to do a super awesome illustration all pretty and rendered. Took my time to do the line work and once I zoomed out to look at it I hated. I was only lines and I already didn't like it! So I got out of Photoshop and decided to play around in Sketchbook pro. I came out with this. And I like this way better than the other thing I barely even started. I came to a realization. I like super quick and simple. Whenever I start putting too much thought and carefulness into something it just ends up looking like poo. But when I just hack away at something, draw intuitively, quickly and freely, not only does it end up looking better, but I feel better. Being able to just draw and not think is liberating and makes me happy. Not being worried about what its going to look like at the end, not worrying about if I'm doing it "right". Just plain old doing. And then I just stop whenever I feel like it. I usually end up happier with what I drew and it makes the process so much simpler. So I'm posting this up as a reminder to myself to just do it. Just draw. No worries. Only do. Its a much better experience.
Here is my children's book, Dex T-Rex!!!!! You
can see a preview of the book on this website and purchase it. It will
also be available on Amazon and as an ebook soon. So here is your first
chance at checking it out! I will also have copies of this book with me
at CTN this year :D Check it out and share it with your friends!
So I’m headed to CTNX this year and I’ll be at the New Talent tables!
The New talent tables exhibit people still in college or recent grads.
And we get scheduled recruiter visits, recruiter interviews, advertising
within CTN, and full conference VIP passes :D I’m really hoping this
will be a great job searching opportunity for me and hoping it will help
boost my job search!
If you are heading to CTN be sure to stop by! I’m currently making
stickers to give out and I’m working on other fun things for my table.
I’m also self publishing my children’s book, “Dex T-Rex” :D You’ll be
able to see it in person and hopefully purchase a copy for yourself :D
(still working on that but fingers crossed!)
I got some new necklaces today from my mom ( she is a Premiere Jewelry consultant/seller thingy)
I'm wearing this one today. It's called Jellybean. They are not Jelly beans.
I like this necklace a lot despite the fact they are hard rocks.
I currently only have 1 print available for sale but I will be adding more soon. I just wanted to make everyone aware that it existed! I will update everyone when I have more work available. If there is something that you would like to see for sale in the shop feel free to let me know!
Just got back late last night after an AMAZING week at SIGGRAPH.
Seriously, had a great time. Aside from winning a brand spanking new
Intuos 5 tablet in a drawing for FREEEEEE... I connected with some great
people and got great portfolio reviews. Looking forward to see if all
this work finally leads somewhere!
I'm on my way to volunteer at SIGGRAPH again this year! I put new work in my portfolio and I'm ready to go! If any of you will be there feel free to say hi :) also if you want to see the new work I added click on the portfolio tab above and it will take you to my portfolio website. Here I come LA!
I can never decide how I like to color things! I feel like I do something different every time I try. So I'm still experimenting with what I like to do. I love keeping things simple but I still haven't found the balance between staying simple and achieving what I want. And I always like my sketches more than anything I actually color and finish. Still have a lot to learn and figure out!
Anyways, I took a storytelling class in my last semester and each week we wrote a scene, basically a short 1-2 page story. I actually liked a lot of the ones I wrote so I'm working on turning them into storyboards so I can keep up my boarding. This is from one of those stories. These 3 kids are the main characters. I'm still working on thumbnails now so I'll show you the finished product soon!
I'm pretty sure this happened multiple times because my dad tells it as if I was really little, like 3 or something. But I still remember doing this up until I was about 7. I remember thinking to myself "It feels like its been a really long time, so it must be time for Papi to wake up." But I was always too early.