It has been both busy and not busy - I'm sure that you have felt that way sometimes. With the start of the school year and returning to the classroom, often my life becomes consumed with planning and teaching and grading. Rinse and repeat. Doubling down on that, I'm still taking classes for my admin credential. Finding time to work creatively has been a struggle - one that has varying levels of success.
Original Art - Feedback received: Character design, not storytelling.
I'm still grateful for my critique group - having a level of accountability is so important and I find that often that is necessary to carving out the creative time that I desperately need.
Another piece of the puzzle is Covid - I used to go find quiet coffee shops to duck into to allow time for focus and contemplation without two arguing children. With Covid, it has been much more difficult to find those moments and those locations. I was able to spend about 30 minutes at a Whole Foods tap room a couple of weekends ago - I had a beer and was able to draw for a bit. It was lovely. And, not going to lie, the beer helped me to loosen up. *mentally filed away that little piece of info*
I have continued to receive feedback on the current
project which is great - I'm editing and reflecting on the story and the craft. While I feel strong and confident (most of the time) with my art, I know that I require more focus and time on my writing. I've spent decades honing my art, but writing has been in the sidecar of the art. It goes along for the ride, but may not contribute as much as the motorcycle.
Updated Version: Characters with a story
There has been little down time with my art - I have participated in a few portfolio critiques which are often helpful in providing an objective viewpoint of what I'm trying to express. One was from the incomparable Raina Telgemeier and will be the focus of another post. There's just so much to tell.
I feel that I've been moving so quickly for so long that I've entered a period of reflection in my work. It's not something I'm used to doing and perhaps this is why it is happening. My new few blog posts are going to be focused on my process - not the pretty stuff, but the down and dirty, how it goes stuff.
I've included the "before" and "after" of a piece that had received feedback as an idea of what I hear in these critiques, if you haven't had one yourself. It is a useful experience - though you may not always agree with the feedback and you may not change it. I do feel like my skin has grown a little thicker, though I don't know if I will ever not be a sensitive, squishy marshmallow.
But that's all part of the reflection process, isn't it?