Welcome back to Process 🙂 💐 If you’re new, this blog series is a journal / accountability tool / resource for my pursuit of a career as an artist. Thanks for following along and let’s recap the week!
Meme of the Week
The Week in Review
I read How to Be an Artist by Jerry Saltz, a senior art critic at New York Magazine, and damn was this book incredible. I actually listened to the audiobook which was read by the author. I needed a physical copy anyways since this book had so much amazing advice that I want permanently on my bookshelf and apparently the pages are visually stunning–all the more reason! The book is a quick read and has 63 ‘rules to take you from clueless amateur to generational talent‘. The author shares his personal stories of self-doubt and battling and overcoming his demons, and his anecdotes will fill you with the confidence you need to get to work creating and sharing your art, overcoming imposter syndrome. Also as I’ve mentioned before I have no formal arts education, and if you’re in the same boat as me, this book will introduce you to influential artists to familiarize yourself with the greats and some of their stories.
After reading this book I was interested in hearing more from the author, and found this SXSW interview with him from June 2020 where he talks about his book, art in the context of the current climate, and more wisdom on making a life as an artist. I recommend watching this interview and cannot recommend this book enough.
I watched the documentary HOCKNEY about David Hockney’s life and art. I actually heard about it from Ashley Longshore’s instagram and recent “A Day With David Hockney” series. Hockney certainly needs no introduction and his art’s beauty speaks for itself. In the documentary, I enjoyed hearing Hockney and his close friends talk about his own work, rather than hearing perspectives about it through a historical lens.
As an American living in London and being fascinated by everything here, his story as Londoner moving to America and being enamored with the country makes me excited to go back home and visit the west coast again, seeing its beauty through a new lens. For a beautiful story about beautiful artwork, definitely check this film out.
I’ve been interested in cheap art classes and figured since everything is locked down why not try one on zoom? In one of my previous jobs we used Meetup.com and I remembered along with networking-type events the platform also hosts classes. I searched free art class in London and found a 1 hour drawing class on zoom that was 100% free hosted by Global Fusion Arts! There is a whole meetup group for free events in London but not matter where in the world you are I encourage you to search for similar things in your city!
I wasn’t sure I’d like having my camera on while painting and thought it might interrupt my flow but actually it was nice. It was like the same feeling you get when you’re working in a library or cafe you can focus better because there’s pressure not to get distracted.
I found the set subject matter of the class useful because unless I push myself, it’s easy to stick with my same style and not branch out. The subject of this lesson was surrealism, something I previously had zero experience with. I’m definitely going to take more of these zoom art lessons and am really interested in a nude life drawing zoom course next!
And last but not least my ears were blessed with 2 new Ashley Longshore podcasts this week. One was on the Craft Hangout podcast and the other was on the Bring a Friend Podcast. If you’ve read my previous blog posts you know I cannot get enough of Ashley Longshore and every time I listen to one of her interviews I feel 100x more energized than I was at the start. Her boldness, unapologetic individuality, and success from living this way also makes me excited for the future. She has so many nuggets of wisdom and I want to share 2 of them here. One is that your “social media account is a cherry on top of your cake” its just a tool to stay connected. I often fall into stressing about my instagram posts and and curating on there / how everything will look but its important to remember that above all is your art. This week I was a little nervous to share the blue and red paintings because they’re so different from my previous work and I wasn’t sure if they’d ‘look good’ with everything but then I realized thats not my job, my job is to create.
The second piece of wisdom from Ashley is that “instant gratification will get you drunk, stoned or pregnant, everything else if gunna take a minute.” I think this goes back a lot to what I touched on last week with what James Clear writes about. If you want to build up something it takes hard work and the rewards will not come instantly. If you’re in need of a boost or just cant get enough of Ashley Longshore, check these podcasts (and her art) out!
Paintings of the Week