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Ask Me Art Questions! by Amagire

Hey, new followers! Jesus, there were a bunch of you this week. I'm assuming you tracked me down using that "find your FA +watchlist on Weasyl" tool? Nice to see you all again!

Yanked from SpartaDog's Tumblr (and others), have some prompts. Pick any of these you're curious about and I'll answer in the comments!

A. Do you prefer traditional drawing, or digital?
B. How long have you been drawing?
C. How many classes have you taken?
D. Do you have a DeviantArt, personal website, or art blog?
E. What’s your favorite thing to draw?
F. What’s your least favorite thing to draw?
G. How often do you use references?
H. Do you draw professionally, or just for fun?
I. How much time do you spend drawing on an average day?
J. Are you confident about your art?
K. How many art-related blogs do you follow?
L. Is it okay for people to ask you about your process?
M. Do you prefer to keep your art personal, or do you like drawing things for other people?
N. Do you ever collaborate with others?
O. How long does an average piece take you to complete?
P. Do you draw more today than you did in the past, or do you draw less?
Q. Do you think you’re justified in giving other people art advice?
R. What are you currently trying to improve on?
S. What is the most difficult thing for you to draw?
T. What is the easiest thing for you to draw?
U. Do you like to challenge yourself?
V. Are you confident that you’re improving steadily?
W. Do you draw more fanart, or more original art?
X. Do you feel jealous when you see other people’s art, or inspired? (Be honest!)
Y. Do you like to draw in silence, or with music?
Z. For digital artists: what program(s) do you use?
a. For digital artists: how many layers does a typical piece require?
b. For traditional artists: what medium do you like most? (Pencil, charcoals, etc)
c. For traditional artists: How do you usually start on a big piece? (Light sketch, colored lead, sketchpaper, etc)
d. What inspires you to not just make art, but to be a better artist?

Working on commissions on and off today, seems like a good time to answer questions about art, assuming anyone is interested in My Process. Pick your favorites, repost to your own journals, whatever!

Ask Me Art Questions!

Amagire

28 March 2015 at 10:59:37 MDT

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  • Link

    I'm especially curious about E, F, and d.

    • Link

      E. What’s your favorite thing to draw?
      BOOBS

      Actually I like drawing vast tracts of things. Animals, obviously; pretty much all the animals, including the ones that people don't necessarily think of as animals, like fish and banana slugs and anemones. I like to take everything I know about drawing animals and smash it together in strange ways, either along accepted mythological lines or way off into the land of bizarre monsters and alien things. Anatomical studies. REFERENCE SHEETS. Sexy creatures having fun having sex. Dinosaurs, in either the "sensible reconstruction from known remains" sense or the "JURASSIC PARK, BUT WITH FEATHERS" sense. Apparently I'm really into drawing underwater landscapes, for some reason.

      F. What’s your least favorite thing to draw?
      Human faces. Cartoons. Cartoon human faces. Cars. Cartoon human faces, on cars.

      d. What inspires you to not just make art, but to be a better artist?
      Well, there are two parts. One of them is fully internal: I have this amazing imagination full of stories and creatures, and I feel like I'm just barely able to drag them out of my skull and show them to other people. (Or save them for myself.) So there's always a drive to improve, there.

      I also... okay this is kind of gross. I also take a lot of inspiration from stuff I dislike. Anyone who's followed my furry art or writing has probably noticed that I'm fond of directly taking the piss, but I also spend a lot of time doing this subtly. Looking at what other people have done badly (in my opinion!) and trying to do it well informs huge amounts of my artistic/writing choices. I'm not sure if it's a bad habit or not, but I'm not gonna deny it.

      • Link

        Thanks as always for the thoughtful replies. I'm intrigued by your trying to do well what others have done badly -- that reminds me of what Cervantes did!

  • Link

    Since someone asked E & F, I'll say A & B.

    • Link

      A. Do you prefer traditional drawing, or digital?
      I'm going to be a jackass and say "either, depending on circumstance". Obviously I've been doing a lot of digital work for the past few years: it's fast, it's convenient, it's much more forgiving of cockups than traditional art, and it's completely non-portable. Sometimes it's nice to just park somewhere with a sketchbook and doodle, or grab a ball of polymer clay and some foil and try to make something out of it.

      B. How long have you been drawing?
      Since I had the motor control to hold a utensil. Okay, that's a bit of a cop-out too, isn't it? All children draw. I guess I was about twelve when I started trying to learn to draw better, mostly by looking at photos of animals in National Geographic or whatever and trying to reproduce them in pencil or crayon or watercolor or whatever I had. I was fourteen the first time I tried to write a graphic novel (border collie has a mystical adventure in a magical land!), seventeen the second time (dragon has a mystical GRIMDARK adventure in a magical land!), and when I was nineteen, I had an internet art community to bounce art ideas off of -- Elfwood.

  • Link

    I, O, S, T -- and a!

    • Link

      I. How much time do you spend drawing on an average day?
      We-ell. Since the beginning of this year, artwork has been my part-time job, and I treat it like a part-time job: I've been drawing for about 4-6 hours a day, on average, with one or two days off a week.

      O. How long does an average piece take you to complete?
      Like the full-color-with-background stuff I've been doing lately? No less than four hours, no more than twelve, roughly: the piece I did for Nambroth with the cockatrice on his poultry farm being on the low end, and your forest tryst painting being on the high end.

      S. What is the most difficult thing for you to draw?
      T. What is the easiest thing for you to draw?
      UNSURPRISINGLY this list has a pretty solid overlap with the "things I don't like to draw/ things I like to draw" lists respectively. I guess I would add that, of the things I draw all the time, I draw torsos, butts, legs, wings of all kinds, crocodiles, pterosaurs, and birds pretty effortlessly, and struggle and cry over hands, feet, shoulders, and cat faces.

    • Link

      Oops I forgot one!

      a. For digital artists: how many layers does a typical piece require?
      Of my recent work, the fewest layers I used was 11 and the most was around 30. Probably the minimum number of layers I feel comfortable using is six? This includes layers that aren't visible in the finished work, like sketch/somposition layers and a layer I usually call THE DARKNESS or something similar (for checking outlines against dark backgrounds).

  • Link

    Hey hey! Actually, I only found you once I'd migrated to Weasyl. Totally new follower!
    I would ask... G, I, and V.

    • Link

      HELLO THEN, BRAND-NEW FOLLOWER. Good to see you, too!

      G. How often do you use references?
      Relentlessly. Intensely. Obnoxiously, even. Pretty much every single element in any of my drawings is referenced from multiple sources: Google Image Search for basic stuff, Deviantart stock photos for more complex/specific stuff, and I also reference Stuff Around My House all the time. Little plastic animal figures for things like heads/horns at strange angles, doll furniture for perspective on interiors. I also reference my own hands/feet, my pets, the contents of my fridge/freezer (seriously! look back a few submissions and you will see how I used pig trotters and salmon heads in my art). I check poses in mirrors and take my own landscape photos, too.

      V. Are you confident that you’re improving steadily?
      Shit yes. Actually, I feel like my improvement curve, right now, is pretty steep since I've been deliberately a) drawing a ton and b) deliberately moving out of my comfort zone.

  • Link

    I've actually been following for a while. <: Stumbled across your bug/spidey pics and was like "Whoa, they're a cool artist too!"

    Anyways, here's what I'm curious about that nobody else has asked.

    C. How many classes have you taken? (Or have you gone to school for art? O:)

    • Link

      I suppose I consider myself essentially self-taught; I still have some cruddy still lifes stored from a painting class in college; I dunno if that counts, though, since the class was really basic, like "mix yellow and blue paint to make green, here's how you use a palette knife" basic, and I was hoping for something more advanced.

      I'd really love to take something like a... painting class with a heavy focus on color theory? Since I feel like my use of color is pretty weak. I'd also adore the opportunity to take sculpture or ceramics or bronze casting or some 3D art classes. I'm embarrassed about my lack of education, to be honest.

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    S U Y!

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      U. Do you like to challenge yourself?
      Oh fuck no. The process of drawing something I feel like I'm not good at is a teeth-pulling affair. Every time I deliberately try to shove out of my admittedly broad and expansive comfort zone, it's a cluster-fuck from beginning to end, buuuuuuuut still something I do anyway. I want to be able to draw All The Things, and in this age of Google Image Search, there's no reason not to at least try. This year I'm bangin' on incorporating figures into backgrounds, historically a weak spot/ no-interest area for me. IT IS GOING OKAY.

      Y. Do you like to draw in silence, or with music?
      I usually have a podcast going, or Netflix. Music is a distant third choice, typically, but since I figured out I can make playlists on Youtube, it's climbing.