Posts Tagged ‘art’

I’m doing this again, bear with me…

March 11, 2009

I am listening to morning talk radio as I type this so this might be really random and spotty.  I hope not.

Anybody that knows me, I mean REALLY knows me knows I’m a thinker.  I think and psycho analyze every situation.  I love thought provoking movies, thought provoking music, I love thought provoking youtube videos and blogs, I love hypothetical scenarios, I just love to think.  I think that might be a curse and a blessing because it makes me hesitant and freak out over the littlest things sometimes.  I try to look at things like an average person would, and let things be but it’s so hard sometimes.  I think it’s a mix of my personality and a girl thing because there are so many stories out there of women thinking because a guy didn’t take the garbage out that means they are cheating but they just forgot or something like that.

But the reason why I am typing this for you all is because I am starting to really want to draw art to sell again.  I want to start listing drawings and other artwork on Etsy so very bad.  I think and think about it and like I said before I have always hated the thought of a regular job (no offense to people with one, it’s me and not you) and I spent up until I was 18 fantasizing about making a living off of my drawing skill.  The teachers told me that I developed my own style at 18 people.  They said you usually don’t until your in your 40’s.  They said they usually see about 3-5 kids like that in their whole career.  A class of about 30 kids a few times a day that is a pretty good compliment to another person.

Me, I wanted them to say just one, me.  One thing I have always wanted people to say this is perfect, everybody else is flawed in was drawing and artwork but not you.  I have a few online friends that do artwork that I am ok with and one that I am close to I actually love encouraging.  Her style is completely different then mine, it’s more realistic paintings you would hang over your mantle.  You know, bowls of fruit and what not.

The point is, I don’t feel competitive with her, but if I see a drawing close to what I would draw I feel competitive.  I don’t think that will go away for years.  I don’t know if it’s because I am younger or just part of my insecurities or what.  I think after I start to build a name for myself  ‘crossing my fingers’ that will fade.  Because that is a ridiculous thought right?  Right?!?

I’m trying so hard to just tell myself to just shut up and do it.  Just do it.  It’s stupid, like a middle schooler to sit around being stupid about it.  Just draw and list.  Draw and list.  I have told my aunt and my best friend Harry this let alone myself.  Just draw and list.  I have been reading the Etsy community forum (message boards) for helpful tips and also I love how encouraging they are to each other.  I try to pretend like they are talking to me.  Because if they love the lady that sells scrabble tiles in a tin for way too much money they would love my pencil drawings right?  Right?!?!?

The advice that I always hear for every medium is do your art like how you would like it.  Do it if you think it would be a good idea for you.  Then other people will like it as well.  If you draw something you wouldn’t particularly care for it won’t sell as much as if you like the drawing.

This drives me nuts.  I want someone to tell me to draw a table.  Or fruit.  Or a photo.  Or something.  Because if someone else tells me it’s a good idea then I don’t have to depend on myself thinking it’s good.  I think I am very smart it’s just I am me.  I am an odd duckling.  What I like the majority usually doesn’t like.  Can’t you tell so far?  lol…


This is the first drawing I listed for sale last time which was in January of last year.  I love the Disney movie Hunchback of Notre Dame, I just watched it at the time for the first time in years, and I was inspired.  I took about 2 hours to draw this, I was proud of the shadowing and details and I still am.

I wish there was some space around the edges so framing and matting would be easier.  I will not frame things before sending them it’s just easier for lots of reasons.  I was proud that there was an actual background because if you look at some of my sketches in my old sketch journal there is usually no background.  It’s just some dude or chick standing there giving the peace sign.  This looked like something that is complete and ‘normal’ people would like it and find nothing wrong with it.

Shut up and list it.  Just do it.  Just draw and then list it.  Not this what if there is something slightly wrong with this idea bullshit.  This is acceptable.  Why can’t I get over that there might just be something acceptable and profitable about myself?  I feel deep down like what if someone bought something like that drawing up there from me and I sent it to them.  The Christmas after last I drew the celebrity ANT (I consider him an online friend and he has helped me out emotionally) and sent him the drawing.  He loved it.  He has it in his house.  It’s not framed (which I would love for  him to fork over the money to frame it and then hang it up, the picture is small and in the middle of the paper) but it’s there.  He would never say anything bad about me, he wouldn’t say anything bad about anybody that is in the community we built together.  But why am I freaked out about someone BUYING something of mine, and then having it in THEIR house??

I think it boils down to I am so insecure ‘gasp’ that I would feel like I would be scamming them.  I am so insecure that I feel if a drawing of mine is a gift for free they can’t complain because you can’t complain about free.  I know buying is voluntary (which is another fear, if I had lots of things listed w/o a purchase ever) but still.  I feel I would be ripping a perfect stranger off by selling my art to them.  This art comes from a vulnerable place, I don’t want to sound stuck up but people that aren’t creators can’t really understand that.  If someone said this isn’t good (which isn’t really possible, because there are no accidents in art) and I should quit then I would get angry at them then doubtful of myself.

This is what I proudly call “knife guy” I had this idea in my head for several months when I was 18 and right out of high school and then when I was house sitting in august of 2000 I sat down with a big drawing pad, a pencil, a white eraser in the recliner in my Grandparents front room in front of their tv with the drawing pad on a tv tray.  I don’t know how long it took to draw but it took quite a while.  At least 3-4 hours.  Mostly erasing and redrawing little things over and over again until it looked right.

I love everything about it.  I love the angle and perspective of the table, I love the chips in the knife, I love the look on his face, I love the stubble, I love his irregular shirt.  I think imperfections add character.   If you are decent at drawing the imagination is endless and you can draw anything.  It’s your own world.  But I think it is better when the proportions are realistic and it’s not too off kilter.  I could never sell this drawing, it reminds me of a girl that had such hope and potential.  It is who I aspire to be.  I wish I could do a drawing like this one everyday.

I try to talk to Harry about this.  He isn’t an artist.  He is really good at doing blueprints, but that is the closest thing he is to one.  I keep on trying to get some hope from him.  He doesn’t want to tell me just what I want to hear, I kind of want that too.  He tells me I need to practice because I haven’t done it in so long.  Every time he says that I want to smack him.  It’s like riding a bike, and with technology as it is handwriting as well.  Once you learn how you never forget.  I tell him that and he shrugs and says I am not an artist so I don’t know what to tell you.  I also ask if he thinks my drawings are good.  He says some he loves and some he doesn’t like so much.  I appreciate his honesty so don’t send any mail bombs with his name on them please.

1500+ words later and in the same place you see how I over analyze things.   I think I should just shut up and do it.  Right?  Right?!?

When I figure it all out, I’ll let you all know what my conclusion is

June 29, 2008

Hey guys, I usually talk about these things in my videos but right now it’s easier for me to type it out.  I was just wandering around on youtube and decided to for some reason watch some live Everclear videos.  I have been a big fan of Everlclear since I was 15 years old it was the first serious band I became a fan of and was an instant fan since the first listen to So Much For The Afterglow.  While I was watching videos of Heartspark Dollarsign and Everything for Everyone and songs like that I started thinking about all of my favorite Everclear songs one of them is Loser like me that I put in my LOA challenge video (notice ANT posted a great motivating comment in the comments below) and I was thinking about why I like it so much.  I love the part when he sings “I won’t give in, I’m not like that” but I don’t want to do a long winded blog about Everclear.  At least not this time.

I want to come out of the closet with something if you will.  I started an Etsy store at the end of January after soul searching about what I want to do in my life.  I decided I wanted to get into art again and start a small business in it because all of my childhood and most of my teenage years I seriously wanted to be a professional cartoonist and practiced my fingers to the bone.  I really wanted to be famous by drawing.  Either a cartoon or a comic strip.  My art teachers in high school thought I was something, more then just a “I doodle on the cover of my notebook when I am bored” type of girl but really really something.  They told me that I had developed my own style of drawing at 18 and usually you don’t develop that until decades later.  I was jaded by the thought, thinking well duh that is what I have been telling you all along.  But I honestly do brag on occasion like right now.  My Grandparents were extremely proud all of my hours of doing that instead of schoolwork had paid off.  They still wanted me to do schoolwork but everytime after that when they saw me drawing they said oh what are you drawing there? in a high pitched positive voice rubber necking to see over my shoulder.

If anybody that has alot of experience in art that is down to earth that wants to just out of sheer enjoyment out of my progress volunteer to be my mentor, contact me.

I have drawn and/or painted 5 things to list that are ready to purchase from my Etsy store.  My Etsy name is jdevore and the link is through a graphic I made on the right side of this blog.

Why only 5 you ask?  Honestly, it comes right to lack of motivation and laziness.  I know I know it’s supposed to be fun.  But it’s easier to watch tv and go online (even spending several hours making and editing youtube videos, and right now writing on this very blog) and I think about it sometimes but I just don’t get the fire under my ass to go and do it.

For the last month I have been doing lots of soul searching again.  I keep on telling myself if it isn’t art, then what?  It always goes back to art because that is the one thing I can tolerate doing that I can potentially make money doing.  I loathe a regular job, maybe it’s because I haven’t spent much time at a regular job.  I loathe not being my own boss.  I feel I need a really laid back boss or none at all.  I want to do things my way.

By the way, spare the be an adult and just go out and get a regular job lecture.  Last year I heard it twice. Once from my aunt and once from a good friend of mine and it didn’t stick as well as they hoped so save your energy.  I am looking for words of encouragement but not a holier then thou lecture.  Thank you.

I was a housecleaner for about 3 months about 4 years ago.  I was great.  I made up business cards, went door to door, and made (on the weekends) 700 bucks from 7 customers.  From what I saw they were pleased.  I wrote up a contract and made them sign it and they were very impressed.  I was impressed with myself.  I didn’t mind scrubbing other people’s toilets and washing their windows.  Why did I quit?  I knocked on every door on the suburbian style houses in this town and I was done.  I did all I could do on foot and I decided I didn’t want to take out a loan to advertise.  To put flyers in people’s PO Boxes or just regular mailboxes was several thousand dollars.  An ad on the radio was several hundred dollars.  I just didn’t want to dig a hole to build a foundation for a housecleaning business.  So I quit.  I still have my paperwork, and most of my housecleaning supplies.

I have been in a cycle all my adulthood.  I start something, I get really excited, my first brick wall comes along and I quit.  I want to break this cycle folks I really really do.  I can’t do this forever.  I think most of my reason is because I have never ever had a time in my life where I thought sincerely to myself if I don’t go out and bust my ass I won’t eat and have a roof over my head.  I have slept in a car sure, but I have eaten always.  And so I feel nothing as far as needing to work.  I feel nothing as to needing to have a career to support myself.  I am sorry if that pisses you off but it’s true.

When I was a kid I wasn’t yelled at too much when I got a bad report card.  The teachers eventually stopped caring and started ignoring me in school unless I wanted to attempt to try.  I know my 5th grade teacher let me leave the classroom everytime there was a reason for me to leave.  I made friends with some special ed kids and she let me go on a field trip with them.  She just was tired of handing me work just for the sheet to just have my name and the date on it apparently.  I just sat and drew pictures.  Why?  Because the kids teased me (watch this is my life in my own words I guess, the one on teasing) and I really didn’t want to be at school because of that.  Because school = teasing.

But right now I am not depressed exactly it’s just I want to motivate myself to do art or to do SOMETHING to make money so I can feel I can survive in this world without anybody supporting me financially.  This might sound easy for all of you out there reading this but it’s really hard for me.  I have always felt that I am very smart when it comes to human observation and observing the world around me.  I think all artists are in their own ways.  Whether their medium is music, poems, creative writing, painting, sculpting, drawing, video making, etc. it’s there.

But when I was a kid I don’t think I ever thought why I wanted to be a cartoonist.  To make people happy?  To entertain people?  I know Matt Groening the creator of the Simpsons was my idol, I wrote at least 2 papers about him.  So I wanted to make a funny cartoon?

What I was thinking about while I was watching Live Everclear videos was this.  I feel I have a unique perspective on life.  Through my art I want to share it with others.  This is what I want to get stuck in my head.  I have always also felt I will be famous someday.  Even now I do.  Just a back of my mind thought that I never really concentrated on, but was always there.  Once when I was about 8 or 9 I went to Albertsons with my Granddad on a late night run which was extremely rare so I was excited to be at Albertsons an hour or so before closing time.  My Grandma was going to have a family get together the next day and was doing a bunch of the day before cooking and baking and forgot one little thing so my Granddad was going to save the day by going to Albertsons which if you haven’t figured it out yet it’s a grocery store.

While we were waiting for the cashier to ring us up she took a couple of glances at me.  She said oh hi there and probably complimented me on my eyes, which I got a lot as a kid because I have beautiful light blue eyes.  I said thank you politely and tried to act like I didn’t notice her looking at me several times, I was an extremely shy kid and became instantly embarrassed at any attention brought to myself.  She said I have a feeling I will see you someplace in several years.  I said something like yes I bet you will I live locally and go here all the time.  She said no no no I mean like in a magazine or on tv.  I just have a feeling about it.  I said why thank you, she gave me a strip of Albertsons stickers that have pictures like broccoli with a cartoon face on them with the store’s logo that they put on their packages that the cashiers keep on hand and the only time I have seen the cashiers use them is to give to cute little kids.  Until my bedtime I thought about what she said.  I might of told my Grandma and got the “that’s nice dear” kind of reaction.

I don’t want to be famous just because that lady told me she had a hunch.  Who knows she might be insane and tells that to every little kid she meets.  That experience just sticks in my mind.  And if I ever get so famous I am on tv on a regular basis I could change some things about the story and add “and here I am” at the end of it.

I am only 26 people, there is still (hopefully) plenty of time for me to figure out what my career should lead me to.  I wish I could take these feelings and make artwork out of them.  But right now I am lost.  I am like an arab wandering around in what looks like nothing but dust clouds and beige sand like in old cartoons.  With a spittin’ camel.

Thank you so much for reading this.  Hopefully getting this out in the open will help me out a lot.