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Sketch: This is going to be incredible!
Final Drawing: OK, still good, just don't 'F' it up!
Painting: Fuck, fuck, fuck!
Final touches: meh.
3 months later: What was I thinking?!?
12 months later: You know, that's really not that bad.
- Dan Dos Santos
"my problem with thinking of art as perfect is that it's an absolute term, where as art is a very subjective thing that appeals to people in such different ways. One person finds perfection where the next finds tedium or confusion. It's not like grading diamonds for flaws, there is no actual measure which can be universally accepted."
I know, that's why I say, "looks perfect to me". Might not be perfect for someone else, but it is for me. Particularly your artwork, Dave, but also Chris Bennett, Bhanu, Jaime Jones, Android, and many many others.
I'm not the arbiter of taste, but I am the arbiter of my taste.
I'm no professional yet, but I too got thoughts... Some of my art was good enough to get money for it. That suited me well at the time, but the art wasn't great to me. Didn't stand out the way I wanted it to. One piece I did some years ago was and still is great because I did it when I lacked about 24 hours of sleep, and many people liked it. Even I liked it! The portrait I made this past Sunday was great to me, because I never made myself look good in a picture until then. o_o
These works are not at all my best efforts, but there's something in each one, maybe some life in it, that still grabs me and makes me happy that I did it, no matter how frequently negative I am about my art.
the thoughts and questions here are things that will probably haunt any serious art-type person to the end of their days. the whole 'impossible dream' at first can sound negative and kinda full of despair.. why bother if you can't reach the end? but then one realizes the positive meaning behind it - at least, i interpreted it to mean that art is a wonderful thing where maybe you won't necessarily get better in terms of raw skill (kind of like how graphics in games can only get so good) but like science, something where new things are discovered and learned every day.
some artists paint beautiful realism or pretty people, but i don't always find myself mulling over their work (except for the historical artists who set the methods for art). lovely paintings of girls are the most boring to me, just as a subject. i don't know if that makes me arrogant.. just that we all appreciate different things, and like some kind people have stated, makes art very difficult to judge except on purely technical things i think.
sometimes i worry why i do this, and if i'm doing it for the right reasons, going the way i want to.. but when i try to put the pencil down i cannot. it's very nice to see pros come down to earth and share their ups, downs and thought process.
my idea of perfect is, i think, something that should be avoided.
Here's my idea of perfect painting:
apparently those guys didnt paint this from a photograph or a live model, this person doesnt exist, and this is a painting. Im very impressed by their hard work but Im not drooling over it like I would to paintings that really inspire me, the ones where the artists used their unique "flaws" to bring life and character to their work.
**Finished Work Thread **Process Thread **Edges Tutorial
Crash Course for Artists, Illustrators, and Cartoonists, NYC, the 2013 Edition!
"Work is more fun than fun."
"Art is supposed to punch you in the brain, and it's supposed to stay punched."
i stand corrected
...and because of your use of caps, I totally just pictured you in some courtroom yelling Objection!
Sorry to push this back up but humility is ok in doses. I think an artist needs confidence with a touch of ego. I feel a lot of my work is pretty cool and some not so cool, but I go in to every painting or illustration with the thought that this will be a great work. The struggle of the process is where doubts come in but that is the great joy of doing this stuff. The unknown in each project is what keeps me hiking over the next rise. (wow, poetic) But never in that struggle do I lose the sense of my ability to make the next mark the "one". Perfection is overrated. Flaws and the unique highlight great beauty.
My pet theory about this is as follows, please keep in mind that it's a pet theory, not based on hard scientific data.
Self satisfaction and ego are two different beasts. Self satisfaction is based on your own appreciation of what you do and ego is based on how you compare yourself with others/deal with outside appreciation. They are linked, but not the same thing. For exemple, someone might be very happy of what they do, but they might feel oppressed or misunderstood by others. Or someone might have super low self esteem and think people are nuts for praising him.
I found this awesome article yesterday that explains why people are so bad at self-evaluation, it's lenghty but instructive and intricate:
I am not a pro. I hope to be at some point in the future, but I am not as of yet.
But even still, I've been happy with some of my work. I don't really see the point in doing it if you're just going to feel like shit about it afterwords. I've used personal pieces as desktop wallpapers and things of that nature before.
When I approach a painting, I approach it wanting to do something cool. Wanting to portray a cool idea. If I do that, and it looks interesting, well then there you go. I'll always feel like I can do better, but the day I stop enjoying the work is the day I find something better to do.
I can bet the pros out there hit such a damn plateau skill wise that they would have real hard time getting better. You start with leaps and bounds, but the better you get the more of a style develops and the harder it is to go above and beyond without outside judgement and guidance.
Last edited by Kraus; December 18th, 2009 at 01:30 PM.
I bet they don't but I also bet that YOU wouldn't see the difference. There is a point where there is improvement but it's slower and more subtle, and you can look at the piece and think it's awesome but not know why it's better than another piece unless you have had extensive art training yourself.
True, art training does keep tabs on self-progress, but i think knowing is half the battle. The other half is breaking from the refined muscle memory many artists develop through time, and taking the action to improve.
My theory is that the better an artist gets skill wise, the harder it is to break from the usual strokes and techniques they have engrained their art with. And that's the plateau i'm talking about...Especially when it comes to concept art, where so many more factors get introduced, unlike life drawing where one is trying to be able to replicate what the eye sees as close as possible.
The plateau can come in many forms too: subject, composition, colour choices, etc..
I'm not a pro yet, but that doesn't discredit me, i know where i am and where i want to be. From there on i'll make damn sure to take a break from art so i can come back after awhile and see if i can get off the plateau.
Dave and Baron_Impossible have stated it very eloquently But yeah, usually when I finish a piece I'm really proud of it. Some of them a few days later, I no longer feel that way about, and some I continue to really like.
I'm happy with almost everything I do, if I'm not, it's not done. I used to be okay with turning in stuff I didn't really like, but honestly I think that unless the deadline is crazy, that's simply lazy.
Liking something you did doesn't mean you can't take crits on it or do better next time either
Hrm, it's rather nifty to see all the responses here. Not a professional either, but I also feel slightly less crazy now, as I also go through the roller coaster of liking/disliking a piece both during creation, and after. I don't think I've ever actually settled on a view of any of mine to this point.
Though I'll also say, after deciding to move on there's an hour of calm and then for hours directly following that it feels like I'm a masochist, finding every flaw possible. It's useful in that I think it helps immensely for the next piece... but yeah, ouch.
I'll definitely agree in the view of the endless journey, there's so much out there and in each individuals heart and mind that I don't think it could ever end, and why would anyone want it to? My goal in the end is to create things that share and evoke in others, just like a piece I found yesterday which I proceeded to share with everyone nearby. If I can do that even a little, I'd be happy.
One last thing though, is that pondering this I have this mental image of working on a masterpiece, something like a culmination of all the study and work in a lifetime coming together into a distilled piece as close to perfection as could be attained by that life... and moments before completion, a few brush strokes to go... heart attack. *cough*
"I have learnt silence from the talkative, toleration from the intolerant, and kindness from the unkind; yet strange, I am ungrateful to these teachers." - Kahlil Gibran
Sketchbook: Critique greatly appreciated =)
Of course working professionally isn't the time to experiment. I imagine if a client is paying for the style in your portfolio that's what you'd have to deliver so the development would have to be done on your own time. Something like that for a professional artist would require a great deal of dedication. He or she would have to work when they're not working.
Here a quote from that site that was linked
'Photographic reference is almost always used as a guide by photorealists, but becomes less necessary as an artist gains proficiency, and understanding of the elements of photorealism. While reading the list of the elements of realism, consider that no other artistic style demands so much of an artist. Photorealism is by far, the most difficult artistic style to master.'
what a BS
I've not seen that painting but I've seen originals of others of Dru Blairs artwork at Coast Airbrush. It's insanely amazing work. Those that say that the WIP steps of the image don't look real DO NOT understand the method of creating an airbrushed artwork AT ALL.
Let's not get emo. I think what people say is that the claim that no photo reference or real model was used is BS.
No one said it is not possible to paint by ref.
Reproduction is the first basic step of every artist who start out.
It is not the highest form of art. Art is not about reproducing some photo as good as possible, painting is a language and his images dont tell me anything at all. The coke can that is splashing in the water looks nice tho, some of this is good illustration work and would make great of ADs or posters.
But painting this level of detail and lighting without any ref, that's BS.
Stephen Silver has a bit about this in his latest art cast. Im not sure how to embed videos all fancy that aren't from you tube. I really enjoy his videos, not as grating on the nerves as a certain other high energy, high pitched utreamer (which I still enjoy from time to time)
[url=http://galleryonefone.blogspot.com[/url] This would be my gallery in Sweden
This would be my Pleine Air blog
I always second guess myself to the point of insanity. I think its because the level of work I want to achieve is quite far from my grasp, and at times I get so frustrated that I get insecure about my work, cause I'm surrounded day by day with people that blows my mind with the stuff they make or when I see someones insane work here on CA or CGhub...
I do have my good days though, and those are the days where I can sleep pretty well.
Last edited by richarddoble; December 20th, 2009 at 06:33 AM.