Nowadays, a college degree is less important than it was twenty years ago. Not even an art one. I became a coloured pencil artist by chance but I am happy that I did.
I got a History degree as a mature student not knowing what career I was going to choose. Back then I didn’t even know if I could draw (let alone become a coloured pencil artist) and I would have laughed if somebody had told me I would run an art business years later.
But I can draw, well now I can because I taught myself. no fancy degree or college course for me. I believe that with practice and hard work you can learn any skill. You have to want to learn and be passionate about it. Let’s face it you wouldn’t want to learn something you hated, would you?
Here is the pathway of my learning that has got me to where I am today.
1/ I doodled
I started drawing faces at first and those first attempts were horrendous. The eyes were too big, too small or too close together. The nose was either too big or too small. The lips had no real shape to them. Basically, I didn’t know how the proportions of a face worked.
I really didn’t think I could make it as an artist because I couldn’t get my drawings right. So one day I typed in the YouTube search bar “How to draw a face”.
I started working through the relevant videos and subscribed to my favourite ones and practised every single day. Sure enough, I started to get better and better and friends on and offline were starting to compliment my drawings.
I started sharing what I had drawn on my Facebook profile and even created an art page. It was then that people asked me to draw for them. My first commission was a dog. Now I started thinking that I could start an art business being freelance and see where it took me. I know have a Facebook group giving help to other coloured pencil artists. JOIN GROUP
4/ Other mediums
Dabbling with different mediums like watercolours, acrylics and marker pens was fun. I loved them all. And I even sold a few acrylic paintings and watercolour ones too.
5/ Coloured pencils
Then I found coloured pencils, after following an artist on YouTube who was a coloured pencil artist. It was then that I became fascinated with them. I only ever thought of coloured pencils as a means to colour in colouring books. How wrong I was. I started to focus on learning everything I could on this medium and I soon realised this was the medium for me. Investing in professional standard coloured pencils was the best thing I did.
My favourite coloured pencil sets are Polychromos and Prismacolor. I am currently saving for a set of Caran D’Ache.
Then I opened an Etsy shop online when we went into the first Lockdown in May 2020 and listed my coloured pencil art for sale. I also started this art blog with the aim to help other artists start their journey with coloured pencils.
Finally, I have been able to call myself a professional coloured pencil artist for almost 2 years now and my business is flourishing. My blog is reaching a larger audience with over 7,000 views to date
I am in the process of putting together a video tutorial to help beginners with techniques and how to take their art to the next level. The tutorial is near completion and I am so excited to launch it in the coming weeks.
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