No matter how long were have been making art, it’s still important to revisit the basics. In this essay, I explore why — and how even dogs need a lifetime of learning.
Image: Dawn at the Newark airport. I’m going on vacation.
These are times of worry, stress and anxiety. History is thrashing around like an avalanche, the solid ground is shifting, the familiar landscape is collapsing.
We shrink when a stranger coughs. Wildfires. Politics. Economics.The news cycle is unrelenting.Continue reading “How to cope.”
Two summers ago, I bought a new iPad. I wasn’t quite sure what to do with it because, frankly, I’ve spent a long time drawing in a sketchbook with pens and brushes and the idea of making digital art seemed kind of icky.
But the Apple Pencil intrigued me, so I made it my summer project to learn to use it to make some art. I figured, worst case, I’d give up and just use it for Facebook and Netflix.Continue reading “Me, myself and iPad.”
Last week we went to Florida and basically sat on our pasty butts by the pool, guzzled cheap beer, ate fish, read books, played cards, and napped.
I read:Continue reading “What I did on vacation.”
You’ve probably heard of “The 10,000 hour rule”. Malcolm Gladwell popularized it in Outliers — in which he posits that it takes that long to become expert at any skill. Gladwell’s distillation of the science behind “rule” has been debunked since then. Not surprising, our own experience confirms that there’s more to the story.
Think about driving. You’ve probably been doing it for decades. If you commute for an hour, you’ll drive 10,000 hours in twenty years. So are you an expert driver? Really? Could you win a NASCAR race? Do stunts in an action movie?Continue reading “How to get great.”
It’s tempting to think that if we want to make art, we should, of course, begin by shopping. Full of zest, vim and vigor, we resolve to really get in the creative mode and, tail wagging, we prance off to the art supply store.
We browse through walls of pens, shelves of sketchbooks, and bins of brushes. We consider locked racks of spray paint, spools of armature wire, lino knives and airbrush frisket. We stare blankly at tubes of yellow watercolor that arbitrarily cost a buck or a Benjamin. And finally we stagger home, our credit cards limp with exhaustion, clutching bags of random gear, unsure of what to do with most of it.Continue reading “How to buy art supplies.”
I like a decent party, but I’m no social animal. The idea of sashaying into a room full of strangers gags me with anxiety, but once the initial ice is broken, I generally have a good time, meet a few new people, have some interesting conversations, and manage to avoid eating or drinking to excess. I generally like to arrive once things are likely to have warmed up a bit and leave before they get ugly.
The last party I attended was on Saturday afternoon. It was in an empty high school cafeteria with 150 adults, 147 of who I’d never met before. It lacked many of the trappings one has come to expect of a good party. There was an empty coffee urn, a Ziplock bag of rather dry homemade cookies, no toilet paper in the bathroom, and no music. In fact, we were instructed at the outset to avoid speaking at all, unless absolutely necessary. We were also warned not to shush anybody who did make noise.Continue reading “How to party.”
This week on art for all, I am bringing in an expert to discuss one of the most powerful productivity tools in the creative’s arsenal. How to give yourself assignments to focus your work, improve your skills, and really move things along.
Roz Stendahl is an old pal of mine and a teacher at Sketchbook Skool since Day One. She is a real treasure, full of knowledge on drawing, painting. bookbinding, and life.
If you haven’t yet, please subscribe to art for all on your favorite podcasting app.
- Sketchbook Skool.
- Beginning: the kourse.
- Coupon code for a discount on Beginning: ARTFORALL
- Roz at Sketchbook Skool
- Roz’s blog.
EPISODE TRANSCRIPT: Continue reading “Podcast 04: How projects can kickstart your creativity”
Amazingly, there are so many wonderful creative people who make all sorts of amazing things — but are afraid to draw.
In this week’s episode of my new podcast, art for all, I tell the story of one and how he overcame his fear.
You can listen to it here but please subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts.
Episode transcript: Continue reading “Podcast 03: The artist who couldn’t…”
The great New Yorker artist has loads of inspiring ideas in every page of this 1954 classic. I love the way he uses calligraphy, simple drawings, thumbprints and collage to make witty, insightful comments about being human. Join me as I turns the pages.
Books from this episode:
• The Passport by Saul Steinberg