On Doing The Work: Artist Kindling Letter From MrJayMyers

February 27, 2017By jay13 Commitments, art, Blog, Encouragement, inking, stories, children's tales, comics, children's books,, process, Recommended Tools

Welcome to a new week of creating: create, be happy, and create more. Drawing can be extremely difficult. It’s easy to get into a slump and think it will just go away. Or that you have a to have a muse to get you out of it. It’s easy to think doing the thing you always do will break the slump.

But, we mustn’t wait to be inspired. The world is swirling about us with inspiration. Now given the fact that we’ve already talked about the need for rest, there are times when you just need to show up.

“Inspiration usually comes during work, rather than before it.” Madeleine L’Engle

So, given that we’ve done other things, remember to show up. That’s what professionals do. Just by showing up to do the work we open up the doors for inspiration. Just put pen to paper/tablet/whatever and start.

Don’t loaf and invite inspiration; light out [run] after it with a club, and if you don’t get it you will nonetheless get something that looks remarkably like it. Jack London

I remember there was a time I thought I had to be angry to draw. “I can’t draw unless I am angry.” I would say—so, I would put myself in a bad mood. That creates a habit of anger which in the end doesn’t make beauty. The cool thing about being alive is that we can grow and learn. I don’t have to be angry anymore. I likely never did, but that is all part of the learning process.

These days I have my family, my faith, and my storehouse of ideas which inspire new ideas and because of them I can sit down at a page and have a thousand different ideas to create. Those ideas spawn other ideas and truly all I need to do is show up. But, somedays I feel like there’s kryptonite sitting at my desk or that the sky is made of iron or that there is a fog overlying my brain.

On the tough days we still need to show up and start the process toward inspiration. If we can get the scariest part of those days out of the way: a blank page, then we can move on. I have a fix that I use for that: Make a mark—any mark—then another, and so on and so forth. Even if those marks you made don’t make something great, you’ve begun the process toward inspiration. You are no longer the inspirationless “victim”, you’ve lit the fuse of your muse.

Here’s how we put it in Thirteen Commitments for Artists to Cultivate Inspiration: “I commit to doing the work, believing, “Inspiration usually comes during work, rather than before it.” Madeleine L’Engle Get your free copy of our one page PDF Thirteen Commitments for Artists to Cultivate Inspiration here.

By the way, I’ve collected all of the “Thirteen Commitment” posts, so far, under one link. Please share them with the artists you know. You can find them here.


Recent Art:

5 points many poses: This is a gestural process that I have been thinking through for a while now. It allows me to rough out ideas very quickly and not have to worry about what I am going to draw. Process:

  1. place 5 points on the page
  2. choose one point to be the head
  3. place the body “tube” (I use a cylinder so that I can tell which way the body will face)
  4. determine which dots are the hands and which are the feet
  5. connect the arm “tubes” to the body and hands*
  6. connect the leg “tubes” to the body and feet*

*note step 5 & 6 are interchangeable

This is an easy process once you get the hang of it and will allow for some great gestures using the same five points. All of the gestures in the video above are from the same exact 5 points. I just used marker rag paper to do an overlay.

If you use this process tag me on IG @mrjaymyers I’d love to see what you do. #5pointgesture


Drawing Ideas: A Hand-Drawn Approach for Better Design

Award-winning designers and workshop leaders Mark Baskinger and William Bardel bring us this thorough course in drawing to create better graphic layouts, diagrams, human forms, products, systems, and more.   Their drawing bootcamp provides essential instruction on thinking, reasoning, and visually exploring concepts to create compelling products, communications, and services.

BTW, I am really digging this book so far.


Have a great week everyone. Create, be happy, create more,

Jay

Subscribe to get the free one page PDF: Thirteen Commitments for Artists to Cultivate Inspiration. My wife and I have packed it full for you.

Jay Myers: Curtesy of Raynna Myers

Please share this with anyone else you think may be encouraged by these kind of updates. Thanks!

Other ways to connect (MrJayMyers): Twitter , FaceBook and Instagram.

Check out my free western fairytale webcomic: The Adventures of Tomy and JonOr buy your own copy here.
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On Encouraging: Artist Kindling Letter From MrJayMyers

February 20, 2017By jay13 Commitments, art, Blog, Encouragement

Hello and welcome to the week.
How are you all doing? Are you courageously doing your art and growing your skills? Do you have someone who encourages you to daily attack your art and stick to your goals? Are you that for someone else? 
How many times have you said, “I give up”?

I truly used to do it daily. I’d go on Instagram and see Parker, Brown, Creature Box, my brother, and so many others doing stuff I thought was impossible.

<Enter wife> in the messy puddle of discouragement I was wallowing in. She’d enter pick me up and help me have the strength to push on. I am so glad she did. I needed encouragement.

We need encouragement. So, because I had it and know what it feels like to be discouraged, I choose to do it for others. I do it even if they’ve never done it for me. You should too. Why? Because they need it and  giving what you need helps you as well. One day, someone will return that favor. But, besides what you might get in the future, give it, because it’s what you need. Because you know how it feels when it’s absent.

When you encourage, be specific. “Great looking hands” goes a long way for someone struggling to draw hands. “Your inking is incredible” goes a long way when the self talk in most artists is: “I suck at this”. We all do it sometimes. Speak the opposite to those around you.

Here’s how we put it in Thirteen Commitments for Artists to Cultivate Inspiration: “I commit to encouraging others, believing we need each other in order to fulfill the potential we are born with. “…whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.” (Prov. 11:25)”Get your free copy here.
By the way, I’ve collected all of the “Thirteen Commitment” posts, so far, under one link. Please share them with the artists you know. You can find them here.


Recent Art:

 


I have been looking for a mobile dip pen solution for a while now. The Jinhoa x750 paired together with the Zebra Comic G Nib is my favorite solution so far. I also discovered Platinum Carbon Ink  which works wonderfully. Once dry it doesn’t lose richness when erased over. Also, you can use water on it with minimal washout. My biggest struggle is learning to use dip pen again. One warning: The pen will need plenty of cleaning and you’ll sometimes need to tap the nib to get it flowing again. For me this is a small small price to pay for a great mobile dip pen solution.

 


What’s the best encouragement you’ve received?

Have a great week everyone. Create, be happy, create more,

Jay

Subscribe to get the free one page PDF: Thirteen Commitments for Artists to Cultivate Inspiration. My wife and I have packed it full for you.

Jay Myers: Curtesy of Raynna Myers

Please share this with anyone else you think may be encouraged by these kind of updates. Thanks!

Other ways to connect (MrJayMyers): Twitter , FaceBook and Instagram.

Check out my free western fairytale webcomic: The Adventures of Tomy and JonOr buy your own copy here.
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On Rest: : Artist Kindling Letter From MrJayMyers

February 13, 2017By jay13 Commitments, art, Blog, inking

Hello and welcome to the week.
I hope you’ve had a restful weekend and are ready to dig deep and pull out incredible art. I know a lot of us freelance artists view our work week as Monday through Monday. But there is a time and place for rest. It gives us strength and helps us to reflect. That reflection is part of where new inspiration comes from. When we are drudging from one day to the next, without end, we don’t get time to recapture thoughts and understand experiences. Inspiration thrives on these thoughts and experiences.

Epiphanies may seem to come out of nowhere, but they are often the product of unconscious mental activity during downtime. (Scientific American)

My family and I have a rhythm of keeping a day of rest each week. Being at rest causes all the work you’ve been putting in to ferment and grow. So, rest. The greatest Artist I know created a day for rest and I figure if it is good enough for the Master artist then it’s good enough for me as well. (Have you see the trees? He’s my top favorite artist.)

What does this rest look like? Well, for me, as a 9-5ish UX designer, it means that all projects cease—I have personal projects I am working on, besides my full-time job, and for our time of rest, I don’t work on them. That doesn’t mean I don’t doodle or jot ideas down. I use my sketchbook as a journal and usually not far from it. As a person with a typically non-illustration job (though I do sometimes work on Beat Boards), I view non-current-project doodling as restful.

We’ve had to fight to get to this rest. It’s not easy, but it’s definitely worth the fight.

Here’s how we put it in Thirteen Commitments for Artists to Cultivate Inspiration: “I commit to keeping a day of rest each week, believing God is the greatest Artist and He created a day of rest as a gift—I want to be like Him.” Get your free copy here.

By the way, I’ve collected all of the “Thirteen Commitment” posts, so far, under one link. Please share them with the artists you know. You can find them here.


Recent Art:

 

 

 


How do you overcome the hindrances to rest and creativity?

Have a great week everyone. Create, be happy, create more,

Jay

Subscribe to get the free one page PDF: Thirteen Commitments for Artists to Cultivate Inspiration. My wife and I have packed it full for you.

Jay Myers: Curtesy of Raynna Myers

Please share this with anyone else you think may be encouraged by these kind of updates. Thanks!

Other ways to connect (MrJayMyers): Twitter , FaceBook and Instagram.

Check out my free western fairytale webcomic: The Adventures of Tomy and JonOr buy your own copy here.
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On Studying: Artist Kindling Letter From MrJayMyers

February 5, 2017By jay13 Commitments, art, Blog, Children's tales, inking, story, Writing

Hey all, welcome to a new week!

When I was younger,  I wouldn’t draw something—perspective or cars for example—because I thought that one day something would just “click” in my brain and I’d be able to draw whatever I wanted. It never clicked and it stunted my imagination as well as my skills.

I realize how silly that was now. I didn’t then.

Now, I know if I want to do well at something I have to study, I have to work, I have to show up and put pencil to paper, I have to learn from those who do it, whatever I am studying, well. This practice helps even when I am dry artistically.

One of the main ways I study, and get inspiration, is by following and in some cases mimicking great artists. One of the exercises I do, when I am feeling particularly dry or am challenging myself to learn something new or better (like perspective), is to go to Instagram and look at the artwork of others. Then I’ll sketch their composition, forms, or poses using my own characters or simple shapes. The effect—I am making myself be creative (it is my hand and head that is doing the work after all), I am learning, and I am leaning on those better than I for support—sometimes, this is all we need to have that “click” for our own ideas.

Here’s how we put it in Thirteen Commitments for Artists to Cultivate Inspiration: “I commit to studying the artwork of others, believing this is part of the importance and purpose of art: to be inspired and to inspire others—passing the torch.” Get your free copy here.


Recent Art:

 

 


Have a great week everyone. Create, be happy, create more,

Jay

Subscribe to get the free one page PDF: Thirteen Commitments for Artists to Cultivate Inspiration. My wife and I have packed it full for you.

Jay Myers: Curtesy of Raynna Myers

Please share this with anyone else you think may be encouraged by these kind of updates. Thanks!

Other ways to connect (MrJayMyers): Twitter , FaceBook and Instagram.

Check out my free western fairytale webcomic: The Adventures of Tomy and JonOr buy your own copy here.
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Subscribe below to my email newsletter and get a link for a free download of a one page PDF to keep you inspired:

* indicates required



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