A couple of weeks ago I volunteered to take part in an artist’s blog-hop. A blog hop is where you write a blog post that answers a few standard questions, while introducing the person who nominated you, and three other people that you’re nominating’. It’s a fun way to learn how other artists, writers, coaches, parents, whatever the ‘category’ of people taking part, operate. This blog-hop post is for an artist’s blog-hop, which means the people I’m introducing here are other artists. (If you’re thinking, ‘hang on a minute, what makes you an artist!’, read this)
The artist who nominated me is Jenny Moed-Korpela, and I find her work fascinating. She works in mixed media, which means there’s always more to see than you notice at first glance. A Finish artist, who lives in China, she has access to all sorts of material that makes her work stand out. Her speciality is birds, and while they take centre-stage, there is just as much thought and work going into their settings. Please take the opportunity to peruse her gallery and find out more about this lovely artist’s work.
Now for the Q & A! Let’s go!
How Does My Creative Process Work?
The short answer to this question is: erratically!! Sometimes I’m really lucky and inspiration for a Seamus story will just hit me, and I’ll go and write it down or sketch it out. But mainly the process starts with me looking for the next adventure and sowing the seed in my head. Then I go and do something else and let that seed germinate. That can often lead to lots of different ideas, which normally meander their way into my brain while I’m walking Kimber, or having a shower, or cooking the tea, or doodling in a notepad or on my graphic tablet in iDraw. Then I follow them to see where they lead and capture the ones I think will work. When they’re topical, I can often miss the window for them, by over-analysing or dismissing them too quickly. I’ve had to learn that just because the cartoon doesn’t develop into a decent story with the first ending I think of, it doesn’t mean that there isn’t a good ending a few developments down the line.
I used to be able to take my time and just draw when the mood took me, but now with my weekly email, Sunday Sunshine, I’m often under time pressure to come up with something. If Kimber has done something cute or funny, then I can use that, but if not, it’s usually down to Seamus to save the day! So I have to fast track the process and look for more inspiration. I find that the more time I spend alone, the harder that inspiration is to tap into: getting out and about is definitely conducive to my creative process.
How Does My Work Differ From Others Of It’s Genre?
When I was mulling this blog post over, I was called to question ‘my art’, which led to the blog post linked to above. I think all art is the interpretation of a story, and the pictures I draw aid the interpretation of Seamus’s stories about his adventures. The stories on their own don’t work as well as they do with the drawings, but it’s not really about the drawings. Which is just as well, because while I can draw Seamus in a way that other people can’t, I’m not that good at drawing per se. Most cartoonists are a lot more skilled in that area. However, all cartoonists tell a story, and those stories wouldn’t work nearly as well without the physical depiction of the characters that we envisage when we create the story. Which I think is the point, don’t you. That the characters in an all-words story are left to your imagination; whilst in a cartoon, the writer shows you what is in their head when they’re creating that story and the characters in it. Which is what an artist does: they show you what’s in their head, or heart, or soul.
What Am I Working On Right Now?
Just now I’m working on building up a range of merchandise that depicts Seamus and his adventures. I’m selling them in an online marketplace, with a view to finding a way to sell them offline in the future. I’m really excited and nervous and amazed that this is all so easy to put in place: thanks to the amazing technology that we have available to us these days.
Why Do I Do What I Do?
I’ve drawn Seamus and sent him on adventures for as long as I can remember. Longer, in fact, since one school friend recently said to another, ‘Don’t you remember Sam always talking about and drawing that sheep?!’. I’d forgotten he was that old, but she hadn’t! I draw and publish him because doing so brings me joy, and other people tell me he brings them joy too. He makes me smile and laugh, and even when I can’t quite get the ending, or something doesn’t look right on the computer, I still get a thrill from it. He brings my imagination to life, and I’m grateful to have that opportunity. I know the world has some serious issues to deal with right now, and I’m not immune to those concerns, but I think that’s all the more reason to have something innocent to smile about. And Seamus is innocent: there’s no malice, or laughs at someone else’s expense: he’s a bit of good-natured and light-hearted fun.
So now it’s time to hand the baton on and introduce three fabulous female artists, who will be posting next Monday.
First up is Julia Elmore. As well as being an artist in her own right, Julia is passionate about helping others embrace their creativity in a wide variety of art forms. She leads groups on Inspiration Days and also operates one-to-one workshops, among other things. Find out more here.
Then we have Eli Trier: an artist, illustrator and designer. Eli’s equally at home whether she’s helping business owners get their message across in a unique and engaging way, helping authors fill their books with colour and personality, or helping magazines that want their features to sing on the page. Find out more here.
And finally, we have Irena Ellis, who’s butterfly art is breathtaking. Irena is in the process of moving to London, and she’s on a mission to help us all appreciate art and find the artist inside of us all. She’ll take you round the art galleries of your choice, bring the art to life, and help you to develop any creative spark you feel as a result of the visit. Find out more here.
I hope you have fun exploring the worlds of these four amazing artists. They are all unique and extremely talented in their own way. I feel privileged to be in this blog-hop with them. 🙂