What should I be doing?
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    What should I be doing?

    Hello! I am trying to figure out my life and where to go to school and all that- but what should I be doing in the mean time? I want to go into illustration somehow, and I am currently very actively searching for a way- but what should I be doing to develop my skill until I get to school? I know I have to draw and draw and draw, but I guess my main problem is with computer media. I am not the most experienced at all with computers or graphic design related things. At all. I know that is not good and that technical/computer skills/knowledge is very important today. I'm just not sure where or how to start training myself. I need to work up starting from basic knowledge- and I mean BASIC knowledge. I'm not stupid with technology, but I haven't had the opportunity to acquire much experience or knowledge.
    I would love any suggestions of what I should be working on or towards right now on any aspect of art and/or illustration- whether or not it has to do with computers. Thanks!

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    I forgot to mention that I probably won't have access to this forum for a week or two. If I don't reply soonish that is why.

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    I don't really think there's a definitive answer to your questions. As far as illustration goes, make sure you have solid anatomy skills above all else, since most work you'll get will require some sort of figure drawing. Then hone your environment (i.e. backgrounds) skills by understanding and practicing perspective and landscapes.

    As far as computers go, it isn't necessary to know how to use one or know any programs. It's just another tool and if you're not comfortable with them, then I see no reason to stress out about it. The bottom line is, your portfolio is what will get you jobs and it doesn't matter which media you work in.

    I'm sure the pros on this forum will chime in with more informed and experienced advice, but from what I've researched, the above rings true.

    If people knew how hard I worked to get my mastery, it wouldn't seem so wonderful at all. -Michelangelo

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    Jovian M's Avatar
    Jovian M is offline HOW MANY PUSH-UPS CAN YOU DO? Level 7 Gladiator: Samnite
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    Drawing.

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    I've had three separate illustration instructors at my school say not to worry about the computer side of things until you really nail down draftsmanship and color theory in traditional media. Apparently it's easy to teach someone who can paint well traditionally to use the computer to create art. But it is not true the other way around. In short you don't need the computer skills before you go to school. You can learn them there or even after you graduate. But I don't do computer art so I'm just passing on advice from professors of mine that do.

    I'd say the best thing to do now is study anatomy (do you have Loomis?) and really get in the habit of keeping a sketch book. Use the sketchbook to think out ideas to follow up on later. Get in the habit of throwing your thought process down on a page.

    "This planet has - or rather had - a problem, which was this: most of the people on it were unhappy for pretty much of the time. Many solutions were suggested for this problem, but most of these were largely concerned with the movements of small green pieces of paper, which is odd because on the whole it wasn't the small green pieces of paper that were unhappy." -Douglas Adams

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    JeffX99 is offline Registered User Level 17 Gladiator: Spartacus' Dimachaeri
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    Great question- one we have all faced along the way. All representaional visual art is firmly rooted in traditional fundamentals in some fashion...so to become a successful, professional illustrator/artist you have to have a firm grasp of the fundamentals of visual art. Start with drawing...that is where it all begins. I recommend a book by Deborah Rockman called "Drawing Essentials" - best book I've seen in all my experience for teaching the fundamentals. I posted a thread on Visaul Art fundamentals here:http://conceptart.org/forums/showthread.php?t=174003 It gets a little off track so don't bother reading all of it. Everyone's comments here are right on the money so far - like Meissner said - drawing! As you grow in your art you will begin to focus your direction and interest...it is a wonderful journey...enjoy it!

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