About two years ago a former drawing/painting teacher of mine suggested that I turn my work to a mirror and look at it in the mirror. This would enable me to view my piece backwards and like magic I could instantly see all of the deformities or unproportional elements within the work, that was TOTALLY not visible to my eye before hand. (its crazy)
Anyway, I got reminded about this today when I was riding my bike back from my history class. (I seem to realize many a thing while riding my bike:) ) I tend to be a big routine person by nature. I find something that works and I just go with it..and it doesn't change for a while. (hair style, clothes I wear, routes I take) Every trip to my history class to and from is the same. I'll call the street I take to class Road A and I'll call the street that I take back from class Bull street (because that's the actual name). WELLLAH, I decided today that instead of taking Bull back to the dorms, I would just backtrack and take Road A. And vuah lah! This concept of discovering new things in an old thing by looking at it backwards was reiterated in my brain!!!!
Road A seemed SO much different in the opposite direction. There's a whole car dealership there that I didn't notice at all at first!!!!!
Also, today and yesterday I recieved two bits info/advice from these two prettyyy awesome illustrators.
"The way to do original work is to stop looking at other peoples work."
He says that many artist sit down and reference this from that artist, that from this artist, and another form that other arist.. compile it together, and call it their own. He says that's false.
And. It's true. You can't go to Wal Mart and get a shirt, K Mart to get some pants, and Target to get a hat...and call the outfit YOUR own. That's not right. It's Walartget's outfit. (I know, I'm a fashion student that has such a wide array of examples of clothing stores). It's only your outfit if you sat down, designed, and constructed the outfit. Sure, how many people are actually going to do this? Not many, but those people also don't claim to be fashion desgners. correct?
So, an artist who takes this color scheme, that subject matter, and the other style--and call it their own... I mean, its not.
But, on the other hand I totally---TOTALLY believe that it's SUPER important to search, hunt down, document, and compile anything and everything that can be of any inspiration to an artist...even if it is another artist's work...
Because, I mean, it's obviously inevitable for an artist to "use" something or other from another artist... Specially because there really isn't anything in art that hasn't been done. But this is done involunarily. This is done by the magic of experience. :)
So, I guess, over all---It's easier to find your own way, your own style when your turn inwards and just let it all out. Without TRYING to be like this or that.
Oh what a long rant that wasn't intended to go on that long... anwho.
What I got from Nathan Fox is that it's important, when looking at artist that you like, to look into who they were inspired by.
That's such an excellent way to travel through art history! He commented on how it regularly happends that an artist is told "Ah, your work is remeniscent of Soandso!" While that artist has never seen any of Soandso's work..but he HAS seen Thisotherartist's who was influenced by Soandso. crazy world.
So much is out there.
He also mentioned how IMPORTANT it is, when illustrating some specific thing (his example was a Louisiana slave house) to educate oneself on that subject before jumping into the illustration. Every detail counts. Every inaccuracy also counts. An illustration will be SO much stronger if it's evident that the artist KNEW about what he/she was drawing. So, go to the library. He also mentioned that tangible infromation is much better/reliable than the good ole www.
That was acutally the second time Louisiana was referenced today. The other was in my history class. Apparently Louisiana is the only state to use the Julio Claudian law code for its civil law.... because we're french. Even though... Julio Claudius was an Emperor of the Byzantine Empire which was the Roman Empire before that. Oh, I don't know.
I'm ranting WAY too much tonight.
All in all.
search, absorb, collect EVERYTHING. :)
and check out those illustrators