A series of pictures that show my progression of art from 2003-2012. I know it’s incomplete, but I am sure of the time taken on these.
I want to say that I really started to improve my quality for speed ratio around 2010 onward. I want to blame SPEED PAINTING for this (I will be making another post shortly with pieces that took a short amount of time and documenting my improvement and thoughts on the process)
I want to say that by no means do these pieces cover all of the works that I want to show, so I had to be selective since I could only choose 9. You can take a look at my dA gallery which has documented the past 9 years of my work. I keep it up precisely to let people understand, really see, how long it’s taken me to get to this point and where I used to be. I don’t like deleting giant chunks of art if I can help it; I don’t want to give anyone the illusion that I magically became good after 20 pieces or anything like that. That’s absurd. I’ve sketched a lot more than there is in my gallery, done a lot more studies at school that no one will ever see, and that’s fine.
Mostly… I guess I want to try to help everyone understand how much speed painting worked for me, and how many hours I’ve worked to get to this point.
These pieces are about 140 hours of work. The ones you’re looking at. That’s a rough estimate of how long these took to make based on poorly counting in my head. I have over 1000 deviations in my gallery (around 1600?) - now imagine I’ve probably spent 2-3 hours on each piece (this may not be true for all, but let’s estimate and average here, since the amount of 1 hour pieces is probably about balanced by these gargantuan pieces) — that’s around 4800 hours, a guess, of works that I’ve uploaded (and I want to say that I’m underestimating since I’ve only recently improved my speed so!). Now let’s consider the mountains of sketchbooks I have… and how I spent most of my days at home doodling in them, since I was a child. I would very easily guess that I’ve passed the 10,000 hour mark by a few thousand hours.
10,000 hours is 416 days. Straight. 24 hour days.
Of course, this has been spread out over the course of 10+ years…
I don’t want to daunt, I don’t want to intimidate - I just want to show that this is a thing I love and I do it a lot because I love it. Sure, improvement is always a goal. I get bored easily, so I like to try new methods of picking out colors, or of outlining a part, or maybe a new way of drawing a face, or an eye… something is different in each piece, something has to change or be done differently or else I just can’t do the art. I realized that while I was staying at Naki’s that I can’t mindlessly browse the internet really… I get incredibly bored easily! I realized drawing remedies my boredom. I can get lost in it and think really hard about interesting problems. That’s how it should be. You should be engrossed in your work or you are not going to make much good progress. You should be inventing new problems to solve. You should not be approaching the same things from the same way all the time - try new angles, perspectives, colors, media, tools, brushes, subject matter, sizes, etc etc etc… collaborate, share ideas, come up with giant projects you’ve never done before. Trust me!
I think I’ve seen the most improvement in myself since 2010, which is when I started the speed paints. I will be posting a series of art and how long it took me over the years in the form of quick works to emphasize that. It’s also CONSIDERABLY helped me fit more detail into works that only take 6hr or so, which would have taken me 20+ hours in the past to complete. Speed paints help in every single aspect of your work. I will detail more of that in my next post though!
But yeah. It is good to make giant pictures which take a long time; aim to do at least one or two a year to measure your progress. (Or more if that really interests you!)
It’s always good to see how far you can go in your current best effort.
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