Category Archives: It’s a Colorful World

Adventures in art :)

Five Things You Should Not to Say to an Art Major

There are certain things that you just shouldn’t say to a student pursuing an art degree. Whether they’re an Illustration major with a teaching minor or a Ceramics/Photography double major, there are a handful of phrases that will make any art major want to dump paint over your head.

(Disclaimer: This is a slightly angsty post due to the fact that I have two weeks to finish three paintings and two drawings for the semester XD)

5) You just sit around drawing all day, right?

Yeah, no. Different art classes require different things, but you are never just sitting around drawing the whole time. You move around. You confer with your fellow class mates. You make a pot of coffee. You go cut paper with the monster paper slicer. You spend 30 minutes mixing colors for your next layer of paint. You make another pot of coffee. And then you go off and solve 23 other problems that just popped up. There’s a lot more to being an art major than drawing all day.

4) I could do that and/or your major is so easy.

Some people walk into a museum, look at a piece of art work and say, “I could do that.” Everyone has the ability to do art, but not everyone chooses to be an artist. There is so much that goes into every piece of art, many of which you don’t notice when you are just looking at it. Just because we get to do a lot of fun stuff doesn’t mean that it’s easy.

3) Did you know you have paint/clay/ink/etc. on your ________

Yep. We tend to be messy. Sorry.

2) There are a million other people just like you.

This is just kind of an overall nasty thing to say to anyone. Don’t shoot down a person’s dreams. You might think that you’re helping someone by being realistic, but how would you feel if someone came and stomped all over your goals?

1) Have you thought about how you’re going to pay the bills?

Oi vey, this is the worst. Yes, the art world can be quite difficult to get ahead in, and at the beginning it can be hard to make money. You don’t go into art for the money, but in recent years, there have been a lot more opportunities for artists in the realm of business. For future reference, yes, it’s something that crosses our minds and haunts our dreams, but we’re gonna figure it out.

 

 

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to bang my head against the wall as I do math homework instead of drawing.

 

Until next time,

 

Abby

 

 

Prisoner In My Own Mind

Visual art is one of the most powerful ways to express emotion. In my Drawing 2 class, the five of us were assigned to do a project based off of a very deep emotion or mood for our final project before spring break. I did a lot of thumbnail drawings trying to pin down which idea I would do for this project, and I finally settled on a project that was a bit out of my comfort zone: I was going to do a project visualizing depression.

I know, stereotypical artist emotion, right? Well, many people deal with deep sadness for different reasons, and it’s not just creative people who get really down (though it can inspire some awesome art). I have gone through some crazy up and downs the past few years. There were a few periods of time where I hated getting up every morning. All I wanted to do was stay in bed and cry, but I would end up hiding behind a smile and jokes while I felt like I was being held captive by my mind. When you feel depressed, you often feel as though you are weighed down by heavy chains that you can’t get out of. That feeling I felt a few months ago was what inspired this piece.

The first few days working on this were a little frustrating. I hate doing portraits. I do better drawing cartoon style people, and I usually dread drawing realistic people, especially myself. I don’t know why I hate drawing myself so much, but I do. The way I ended up doing the project was to cover my entire paper in charcoal and to draw myself with an eraser and darker charcoal. It’s a difficult method of drawing. Right of the bat, I set myself up for a very difficult project.

IMG_3321My biggest problem was drawing my face. Mostly because I looked like a man for a while. My short hair was making it especially manly looking because I haven’t drawn myself with my new style before this project. By the third day though, I finally got my face down how I wanted it. It took a lot of work, and I ended up getting really messy that day. I earned the nick name “Oliver” from my buddy Garza because I had charcoal everywhere.

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Adding chains wrapped around myself was the hardest part of drawing this. I ended up listening to a musical called “Next to Normal” that is horribly depressing to help me kind of channel the right emotion. You can’t really see it in the photo that I have, but on some of the links, there are words written on them, like “Loser”, “Pathetic”, “Needy” and “Stupid”, which are a few things that I’ve felt in the past. It’s kind of funny, because the words were one of my teacher’s favorite parts of the entire piece. He said it added to the impact of the piece, making it more personal and real.

This morning, we had our critique where we all pinned out drawings up on the board to comment IMG_3328on and get feedback. Mine was the last one to be talked about, and to be completely honest, it was kind of hard to talk about. The concept is uncomfortable. It’s terrifying to put such a personal part of your life up on a board to let other people see and talk about. But I’m really glad that I did it. Everyone in my class loved the drawing, and I feel that I really made an impact on them.

Most importantly though, I made an impact on myself. Working on this drawing made me really evaluate my life and I realized that it’s not worth it to let heavy feelings beat me up.  Granted, sometimes, it’s very hard to fight those feelings. Everyone has times where they feel like crap and just want to give up. Stuff happens. People get sick. People break our hearts. People die. But everyday you have to make the choice to break out of those chains that are holding you down. You can’t do it alone. Without Jesus, I don’t know where I’d be. While times can suck, God has always pulled me through; to deny that would be foolish.

I am very glad to be done with this project. I am going to take a picture of it and put it in my portfolio for “art auditions”, but once I’m doing getting the shots I need, I am going to put it in a box and there it will stay. I don’t want to look at it any more. This drawing is a representation of my past, but my past does not define me. While I know that it is possible that I might experience the deep sadness I have felt before again, I want to keep growing and learning through life. The time we have is an incredible gift, and I don’t want to waste another second of it.

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“Prisoner In My Own Mind”

Until next time,

Abby

If you want to check out my art page on Facebook, here’s a link to check it out with. I post often about my current projects, shows I’m in, or art that I’m selling. I would appreciate it if you liked the page! https://www.facebook.com/ColorfulWorldOfAbby

Don’t Take The Easy Route

Don’t Take The Easy Route

 

It’s probably one of the cheesiest things I could say, but it is so true: Don’t Take The Easy Route. Here’s why.

Both semesters that I have taken an art class at college level, I have strived to be better. After all, I’m competing with kids that have been at this longer than me. So I decided without really realizing it that I was going to really challenge myself with each project. I wanted to make something that I wouldn’t normally make, and improve with each project. And because of that, I’m a much better artist now.

I say this now because I am in the middle of a tough project. In Drawing 2, you have to do a piece based off of an emotion. It doesn’t matter what you do, as long as it conveys some sort of deep emotion. So I decided to do a self-portrait. I hate doing portraits, especially of myself. I don’t know why I don’t like drawing myself. Many artists like drawing themselves as apposed to other people because if they mess up they don’t offend the other person. I dunno what my deal is, but I don’t like drawing my face. I also decided that on top of doing a portrait, I was going to use a technique that involves covering the whole paper in charcoal and erasing to draw your lines. Very messy, very frustrating at times. It’s nowhere close to where I want it to be yet, but I’ve already learned a lot from this project.

Whatever you’re doing, don’t take the easy route. When you take the harder road, you learn more and grow more. Don’t give up. You got this. Prisoner WIP 1

            I will share my finished project with you when I get it done! I hope you will enjoy it!

Until Next Time,

Abby

Find An Amanda

You are never gonna be the best at what you do. Whether it’s sports, theater, academics, art, or apple pie making, there will always be someone that is better than you. And that’s awesome.

10982207_889529911068473_6655976454121931389_n As you grow older and develop skills in whatever you do, (let’s say art for an example) you will constantly be learning. To help in this process, it helps to find people to mentor and/or inspire you to be better. Even John Green (the author of The Fault in our Stars and co-VlogBrother) had a mentor: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UBKKcxCuH-g) I have had many people like this in my life, but I would like to highlight one in particular: Amanda.

1939829_836947219660076_4886078506899368476_nLast spring was when I took my first college art course: Drawing 1. I was pretty nervous being the youngest in the class and working with people that had done art a lot longer than me. Amanda was in the class too, but then thing about her was that she was one of the only people in Drawing 3. And boy was she wicked good. We would do critiques every other week and we always had a hard time giving feedback on Amanda’s stuff because it was so great. Most of us didn’t really know how she could improve on her pieces, because she was way ahead of us.  The few critiques where she commented on my art are the ones I will never forget, because it felt so cool to have someone so talented complimenting my work. I ended up talking with her over the semester, and I was really excited to introduce her to my family at the art show at the end of the year. I was so bummed when I found out that she was moving to Virginia, where she’s at now furthering her study of art.

1450226_836940302994101_7281774416530864193_nWe still keep in touch over Facebook, commenting on each other’s art. I don’t know if she knows this, but I often creep on her art page to motivate me to work harder. It sucks that I don’t get to continue an in person friendship with her, but I am thankful for the time I got to observe her at school last spring. I have had other people in my life who have inspired me to be a better artist, actor, writer and over all human being, but Amanda is one that has stuck out to me over the past few years. She worked hard to get where she’s at, and is a great example of how hard work really does pay off. You can’t expect to wake up one day and be able to paint a masterpiece. It takes time, effort, and a lot of patience.

10014589_836938556327609_6333656827532512806_nEven if you’re amazing at what you do already, there is always room for improvement. It’s not a sign of weakness to have a teacher to guide you or a person to motivate you to be better. All great leaders have to know how to be led. So, find someone to push you to be the awesome human you were created to be.

Find an Amanda.10277329_762491297136814_8183378722769922818_n

Until next time,

Abby

*All art throughout this post belongs to Amanda Brooke*

Fantastic People to Check Out who inspire me to be awesome:

Amanda:https://www.facebook.com/amanda.brooke.gustin

Sylvia’s Art: 71488_10151626859416663_1142336742_n1456488_10152057976586663_1652354052_n

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Matthew:https://www.facebook.com/haveanartattac

Justin:https://www.facebook.com/fullsailbyjf

My Momma 🙂http://awomanwitharmor.com

Reasons Why I Want An Office At Pixar Someday

I am not ashamed to admit that I am and always will be a Disney child, but all of my favorite movies are from a very specific part of the magical kingdom of stories: Pixar. For as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to grow up to be a writer, but as I’ve grown older, I as narrowed down that dream. Someday, I would love to move out to California and work everyday as a concept artist and story-writer for my favorite animation studio, and I have the reasons why they should start clearing a space for me.

  1. I am obsessed.

No, seriously, it might be a problem. I have seen each Pixar movie at least 5 times, but I’ve seen my favorites, UP, THE INCREDIBLES, and TOY STORY, more than I can count. I always get all the questions right on those Facebook quizzes that are called stupid things like, “Hardest Pixar Quiz in Existence”. I’ve watched every behind the scenes documentary and read every book about Pixar that could get my hands on. I love their stories, and they haven’t disappointed me with one of their films.

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  1. I have ideas for films to fill in “The Pixar Theory”.

Okay, so a guy who loves Pixar even more than me came up with this incredible thing called The Pixar Theory. According to this theory, all 14 films take place in the same universe, just in different points in time. It’s super interesting. If you want to hear the theory, check out this video right here:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h0OTZo3-K5s

Anyway, I have many ideas for stories that could fill in some gaps in this theory. I would post them here, but just in case Pixar people are reading this right now, I don’t want them to hear my ideas in this format. I also don’t want smucks stealing my ideas 😛 Maybe someday you all will see a movie inspired by one of my scribbles in my notebook!

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  1. I wanna be part of the world changers.

Pixar is constantly pushing boundaries of technology. Just look back to the first Toy Story and compare it to the visual awesomeness that was Monster’s University. THEIR FILMS ARE BEAUITFUL! One of my favorite quotes is, “Art challenges technology; technology inspires art.” (John Lassetar) With every new project, animators have to figure out how to make thing look better, and sometimes advances in computer technology are made, all because of an animated movie! I just think that would be so cool to be a part of.

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  1. Story Telling is extremely important to me.

I once had a conversation with a girl who said:

“Animated movies don’t really matter, why would anyone spend their time making them?”

Now, instead of decking her like I wanted to, I explained it to her that stories matter. A lot. Think about it this way: All of us are born with creativity. Some of us use it in a business setting, others in a classroom, and others use it in a studio. Story telling is a way to preserve a culture. Can you imagine not having the fairytales that you read as a kid? I sure can’t! Some day, people will look back on films like the ones that Pixar makes and learn things about our culture through the stories that we told. We are blessed with the gift of being able to come up with new, fantastic ideas. Not using that gift is a waste! The people at Pixar are a great example of using the gift of creativity. Their stories are brilliant, and the art makes my heart so happy. I want to be able to help bring that same joy to another kid with wild dreams.

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Every now and then I think that I’m over my dream of working at Pixar. I think that it’s too ridiculous and that I’ll never leave my hometown to go pursue a crazy dream. But then I remember how much their stories mean to me. I often go to them when I’m sad, because I know that they’ll cheer me up, or when I just want to have a good laugh and appreciate life. I hope that someday I can at least meet John Lassester (one of the first people to work for Pixar who now oversees all the creativity that goes on their) and thank him for the work that he put into the movies that helped make my childhood awesome. Who knows? Maybe someday I’ll be able to look back at this post while I’m sitting in an office at Pixar and remember my once far-fetched dream.

Don’t give up on what you love. Extraordinary dreams are the best kinds to have 🙂

Until next time,

Abby

How Not To Suck At Art (Or Anything Else in Life)

Vase and Fish Tail One of my biggest pet peeves is people saying, “Aw man, I could never draw like that. I have no artistic ability.” Yeah, that drives me bonkers. It sounds mean, but this is why: I hate it when people put themselves down, especially when they say they could never do something like drawing. Now, I love drawing. I know that not everyone is an art major like me. I know that other people have other talents.

But there is a difference between “talent” and “skill”.

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You are born with talents. I am a firm believer that everyone has a special combination of talents, and that no one is talentless. Some people are gifted with the ability to keep moving for a long time, like at a soccer practice. Other people have an eye for seeing things in different ways and coming up with ideas for creative projects, like in an art studio.

Lightbulb Skill is something you have to develop. While I have been doing art for a long time, I don’t feel that I was necessarily talented when I took art classes at age 6. Now, I was pretty creative, but I wasn’t an art prodigy. It wasn’t until 6th grade that I started to really work on developing drawing and painting skills, and I don’t think I’ll ever stop refining those skills I’ve picked up.

But I’m not just gonna throw a pencil at you and tell you to start drawing. Here are some tips on how to get better at art:

10665163_889489894436953_5175919063925375059_n1) PRACTICE 

You can’t not practice. You have to keep working. I have filled about 12 sketchbooks in the past 4 years with drawings and doodles and scribbles. If you want to get better at drawing hands, start drawing them. Over and over again.

2) LEARN TO TAKE CRITICISM abstract_pumpkin_by_jediskygirl-d84os9d

This is really hard for me, because I always think I’m right. You have to learn to take critiques from people who are observing your work, especially from people who have been at it longer that you have. I got feedback from a girl named Amanda who I thought was crazy amazing in my Drawing class last spring and I was over the moon that she cared enough to tell me how I could improve. Push the pride aside and learn!

Mac, Hayley and Me3) REALIZE THAT IT TAKES TIME

This is the most important step. 99% of people who start working at art don’t become artistic geniuses over night. It could take years for you to get really good at anything involving art, and that’s okay! You learn from others and yourself how to make things look awesome, and it can build other life skills like patience, dedication and persistence.

These three thinCaffine Blissgs can be applied to anything you do in life. Whether it’s sports, theater, school or even in your relationships, you aren’t born knowing everything. Anything worth doing takes work, but in the end, it really can be worth your while! I tried sports when I was younger, and I didn’t stick with them. I realized that I wasn’t the best suit for athletics, but I still enjoy being active and pretending that I’m sporty. I do believe that if I had stuck with sports and had practiced at them, I could have been pretty good, but I didn’t want to put in the effort. Now, I’m not saying that I wish I was a soccer star. I’m very happy with what I’m doing with my life. But I do know that it is an example in my life where I chose to not put in the effort to get better. Same with any relationship. I have to practice listening to people. I have to take criticism when I screw up and upset someone. I have to put in the time to build a friendship, and it takes time to do that. Whether it’s with a sibling, a boyfriend/girlfriend/best friend or an adult, relationships of all kinds take work, and a lot of people don’t get that.

UP PaintingAll of the art through out this post are pieces I’ve done over the past year. I’m very thankful that I’ve had teachers and fellow students who have encouraged me to keep working and practicing at art. I’m nowhere near where I want to be, but I’m working on it 🙂 So before you decide that you’re never going to try something, like art, give it a second thought. Who knows? You might find a new hobby, or a hidden passion.

Until next time,

Abby

Trying Something New

I thought that since writing is something that I plan to do with my future career, blogging might be a good way to practice. So, hey there! My name’s Abby. I’m a sophomore at my local community college, as well as a homeschooled student. I enjoy art, writing, doing musical theater, being active, and meeting new people. I kind of have a knack for talking to people I don’t know. Sometimes, it’s easier than talking to my friends that I’ve known for years! I also live up to the fact that I am an extremely geeky human. Doctor Who, Star Wars, Star Trek, LOTR, Disney, Avatar, Sherlock, Buffy, Marvel, DC, (and probably a few other randoms I’m forgetting) make me so happy, and many have inspired me to be a writer and artist. I plan to study Illustration and possibly English when I transfer after graduation, though I’m not sure exactly how that will all play out yet. But that’s okay, because with all stuff I’ve done in my short life, it has always turned out for the better, even if it didn’t make sense at the time. God works in interesting ways sometimes! I plan to do different kinds of posts, some spiritual, some about school, and some just ranting about random things in my life. I hope that you’ll join me on this new journey! Until Next Time, Abby