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March 8, 2013
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Often times i see many artists on all levels expressing their expectations from their current progress and seeing it as they fail. They feel this way because the type of level that is set is not only high but its constantly changing to grow higher even as they are progressing passed levels of artistic skills.

consider this:
Imagine a horse rider holding a fishing pole with sugar(your artistic level you want to reach) by the end of the string. And you the artist is the horse pursuing it.You are progressing forward but your goal is also being set higher as you progress.

And of course you will never ever reach the level that is constantly changing and i think this is an idea that every  eager and striving artist should be comfortable with. To be comfortable with failing.This is not to say that you wont reach new levels , because you will.The levels you set up when you started out are much lower then the levels you set in your current phase.

The tough part is of course to stay on track and to keep pursuing something that we will ultimately never reach. The winning is not to actually come to the end of your goals and say.....well what now, the winning is  in the actual learning process that is always keeping your curiosity to move forward.

Do you remember when you were faced with a problem and for along time you couldn't figure it out, and when you did you felt the whole worlds weight being lifted from your shoulders.But by the time you get this you are challenging yourself with bigger challenges.And you are also challenging yourself because its part of our human nature.

Often when people say to me they fail i always reply to them, we all fail,but we keep moving forward. To this day every singe work or painting i do i don't see the progress i see the failings rather. But the difference is is that my goals are set a lot higher then an artist who is starting out.And my own goals years ago was a lot lower too.

As you progress your artistic eye will develop and it will keep  setting newer goals for you, dont worry about that part:)

So if you feel you are failing, dont take it hard, IT'S NORMAL! its a proof that you are and continuing to be an artist.And so don't give up in your pursuit.

The digital art industry is very trend driven and that has pros and cons to an artists development. The pros is that it can give you ideas within certain limits, the cons is that it can keep you developing but only in a very narrow direction. And in terms of failings and developing you as an artist needs to keep pushing to ask yourself whats the next higher goal.

I have seen sooooooo many artist being stuck in their own style and its extremely hard for them to break out because they built their name on it and even though there is recognition their new goals is not really advancing as a wider skilled artist, however they are advancing in that particular style.



so here are a few points that i think is  important to be aware of. Even if you wont agree on these there may come a time when it may seem more relevant.

* be comfortable with failing, keep moving forward
* let yourself be influenced by art and artists but dont let it limit you.
* never ever post image solely for getting recognition, recognition will come from progress automatically, you are doing this for yourself not for others. Do however post for getting feedback and critique.
* be honest about your failings, i personally respect an artist more who does this then one who boasts on how quick they painted something(and yes i have been there too, but i have moved on and learned from it, and i do post works that i am utterly not happy about, and it snot to show off,its only to show that every artist fails)
* do things because its hard not because its easy. One thing is guaranteed the easy path will not learn you anything. The hard part will give you knowledge that will last your lifetime. And you will gain much more respect when mastering something that is truly hard to accomplish.
* don't do the same things all over.
* avoid digital art cliches that doesn't give you new artistic knowledge.
* dont let yourself be let down by artist who get great exposure,and you dont.  just keep learning, this is ultimately about your own improvement on a much wider artistic skillset
* If you do strive for recognition then marketing yourself, networking and social media is a must for a strong freelance guarantee of work. But this doesnt mean that you are the most skilled artist :) In fact there is no such thing. No matter where you are in your learning stage, there will always be someone who is better. And this is something that i find that is a important to be comfortable with.
* lastly and most importantly, DONT GIVE UP!

So once again, keep failing but keep moving on!
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:iconrainsig:
Rainsig Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2014  Student Digital Artist
It's just so important
Reply
:iconwla91:
wla91 Featured By Owner May 10, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Amazing advice, it really motivated me :)
Reply
:iconnahxiii:
NahXIII Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Looking thru your art & journals to see if you do commissions, but I find this. Thank you so much
:+devwatch: & :+fav:
Reply
:iconfuchilli:
Fuchilli Featured By Owner Apr 13, 2013
Clever words! Thank you!
Reply
:iconramtin-s:
ramtin-s Featured By Owner Apr 10, 2013  Student Digital Artist
I really like this journal. I also find my self struggling some times, however I have indeed become more comfortable with the things you mentioned above and I have realised that everything becomes much more layed back. Just like you said, you are doing this for yourself. It's really weird, but I had a hard time learning to deal with feedback and critique in the past, but now I really appreciate it because these things help me become better.

Could you explain btw what you mean with digital art clishe's?
Reply
:iconweebasaurus:
weebasaurus Featured By Owner Mar 26, 2013  Professional Filmographer
Thanks. Been going through a rough patch. I know what i should do, but the human mind send us to dark places where the battles are twice as hard. But I'll pull through ! Thanks !
Reply
:iconpierostuff:
PieroStuff Featured By Owner Mar 26, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks man :)
Reply
:iconwoutart:
woutart Featured By Owner Mar 18, 2013
Wise words!

I actually like the fact that I still can grow (a lot). Sure it frustrates me if things don't work out the way I want them to, but on the whole I love it when I encounter artwork that makes mine look like a doodle on a beer-coaster (happens a lot ;) ). It's inspiring most of all. Well, that's how I feel, I like having two feet on the ground. That way my mind can drift and dream safely without me having to fear my head flies of into the clouds :lol:
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:iconharkins:
harkins Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks man I needed that haha.
Reply
:iconodcinki:
odcinki Featured By Owner Mar 16, 2013  Professional Writer
Now this is comforting.
Reply
:iconsanskarans:
Sanskarans Featured By Owner Mar 15, 2013  Professional
Well said Captain :salute:
Reply
:iconbandro:
bandro Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2013
Thank you! it's very encouraging. Sometimes I feel the way you described
Reply
:iconcavalieredispade:
CavalierediSpade Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013
Thank you! This was very helpful!
Reply
:icontatitati:
tatitati Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
yes...................absolutely
Reply
:iconannacall:
AnnaCall Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Hobbyist Artist
I think a lot of people get hung up on being #1. This is a really great piece that puts it all into perspective. Thanks!
Reply
:iconcatalanomedia:
CatalanoMedia Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Deep.
Reply
:icongekitsu:
gekitsu Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
what a good post!
id say its for the same reason, too, that in the hagakure is written to never trust a man who never failed as much as one who once failed and is still here.

failing itself is nothing to be ashamed about. its what you do when you fail. and hey – if i set my goal as far forward as i can, and fail reaching it, i will have come as far as i possibly can. that is most likely way more than how far i would have come with a goal i knew i could reach.
Reply
:iconmagweno:
Magweno Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Artisan Crafter
Aw gosh I really needed to read this today! I've been feeling awful and reading this from such an incredible artist and person, seeing that everyone is human :aww: made me feel really great. Thank you for taking the time to write it all out, it has definitely bolstered my confidence and I'm gonna share it with all of my friends :D
Reply
:iconviridrain:
ViridRain Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013   Digital Artist
Thank you !! *maximum motivation*
Reply
:iconemberblue:
Emberblue Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks for the encouragement. I really needed to hear this. Just today I was thinking about how bad I am as an artist, lol! Thanks :hug:
Reply
:iconyoggurt:
yoggurt Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Highly motivating post. Thank you so much!
Reply
:iconleventep:
leventep Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Filmographer
your welcome
Reply
:iconstefanieodendahl:
StefanieOdendahl Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
in spite of knowing most of this i often fall in that trap - thinking everyone is so great and learns much faster than me... and i will never reach that level. so thank you very much for this great reminder - i'm totally into this kind of motivational articles and will fav it for the future!
Reply
:iconleventep:
leventep Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Filmographer
its easy to fall in, i do it all the time too :)
Reply
:iconstefanieodendahl:
StefanieOdendahl Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
that's something hard to believe - i always thought if someone reaches a level like you have - the doubts would be gone. it's really comforting to hear that's not the case. so i assume it's just part of beeing an artist... and if it would be easy - where's the challange? thank you again - for inspiring us with your great art and for giving advise to the community.
Reply
:icontk0169:
tk0169 Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013   Digital Artist
Brilliant, thank you very much.
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:iconyouyouart:
YouYouArt Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013
Just thank you!
Reply
:icontshuki:
tshuki Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Student General Artist
I can agree with you on everything you have written. It's great advice. *o* <3
Thank you for writing it! >u< <3 <3
Reply
:iconvictorelessar:
VictorElessar Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013
wise words!
Reply
:icongabriela-birchal:
Gabriela-Birchal Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional
Thank you! These are great advices, I've learned the "be comfortable with failing" thing the hard way. It sure is damn frustanting some times, but when I look back and see how much I have grown I feel proud about myself.
Reply
:iconpeasantb:
peasantb Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Thank you for this, sir.

Looking forward to your streams.
Reply
:iconblofu:
Blofu Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I find that having drawings from 3 years ago is a great motivator as well. I look back at those pictures and laugh!
Reply
:iconblofu:
Blofu Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Not only 3 years, i just mean that if you keep your old drawings you can always look back and see how much you have progressed.
Reply
:iconanmaril:
Anmaril Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you for sharing these things, it is good to read.
Reply
:iconionen:
ionen Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks for the advice. :)

Not only as an artist, I also run an indie game company, I fail a lot. I've had to learn tons and tons of various skills aside from just painting, a lot of them that I'm not very good at.
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:iconmrainbowwj:
mrainbowwj Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
thank you for sharing this
Reply
:iconbonekrishna:
Bonekrishna Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013
I honestly believe that there is almost no one who can understand and accept failure better than an artist otherwise art, as we know it, would be extinct. It is not an easy path, but it is just to beautiful to give up!
Reply
:icontnounsy:
tnounsy Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Interface Designer
well said sir.. i have always been wanted to say thank you for all the great artworks, live sketching and brush sets you have shared with us selflessly. i'm a newly started hobbyist and i have truly learnt a lot from you.

thank you!
Reply
:iconsunsetzero:
sunsetzero Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Well said! :D
One question though, what do you mean by digital art cliches? Haha, I'd like to know because I could be doing them, even if I'm not aware of it :XD:
Reply
:iconleventep:
leventep Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Filmographer
hehe , baccklit scenes,Silhoutte lighting, single guy in FG, lensflares,that kind of stuff. Its ok to do but i think there has to be something special to the image then that makes sense for these things to exist
Reply
:iconsunsetzero:
sunsetzero Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Oh, I get what you're saying! :D
I personally don't like lens flares, especially when it's used when there's not even a sun or light source in sight.
Thanks again, man! :)
Reply
:iconilloo:
IllOO Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Student Digital Artist
I like to ad: overuse of fog/smoke, flying debris, flying burning debris and little glowing gizmos :)
Reply
:iconsunsetzero:
sunsetzero Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks man! I notice a lot of action movie posters with those elements. :XD:
Reply
:icondawnsentinel:
DawnSentinel Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013
Yeah, unless it actually makes sense for those things to be in the scene. Seen too much of that stuff.
Reply
:iconleventep:
leventep Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Filmographer
Reply
:icondawnsentinel:
DawnSentinel Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013
Oh gosh, it's terrible XD
Reply
:iconyakkingyetis:
yakkingyetis Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013
i mostly agree good stuff !
Reply
:iconyigitkoroglu:
yigitkoroglu Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Great motivational words from a great artist.You fueled my artistic spirit today. Thanks a lot! (and keep on rocking)
Reply
:iconkristinagehrmann:
KristinaGehrmann Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
well said. thank you!

we all need this reminder sometimes.
Reply
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