On pillows and the fear of failure


Every professional artist has a workflow that suits them best. Those are highly individual and span not only the practical approaches to arts but also the subjects the specific artist is comfortable to work with. The list of taboo topics varies; some wouldn’t draw gore, while others weren’t comfortable with human facial expressions. For a settled artist every new piece they work on is part of their portfolio, it provides extra income via side channels like Patreon subscribers or merchandise marketplaces (it’s actually funny how some of those artists are trigger-happy to violate the character copyrights but are anal about making sure the commissioner of their work can’t even use the full-resolution piece).

While those boundaries help in shaping the portfolios, they also provide a safe haven. If someone is good about drawing fur, then there’s no issue coming out as mediocre drawing skin – because they just wouldn’t draw any! With that, it limits the creative freedom and flexibility.

How would a newcomer to the graphical arts field decide where their boundaries lie? I tried dozens of things and delved in many facets of 3D, from low-poly modelling to realistic texturing. The possibilities there are endless, but so is the amount of knowledge one needs to amass to become good.

I want to narrow my focus and work on things that feel more reachable than others. I had lots of fun doing the isometric set dressings, the slice-of-life dioramas, and I think I will focus more on those moving forward.

I always felt my dioramas are empty with no inhabitants, so I plan to sort out the low-poly and mid-poly character modelling. While I had lots of fun sculpting, I think that it’s premature at this stage to focus on sculpting alone. It only makes sense for pinup kind of scenes and I’m not ready to commit to that path fully, yet. Every time I tried I got disappointed, then depressed, then gave up on doing art. I want this time to be different and meaningful.

I got to work with Hioshiru on several art pieces and I always appreciated her drawing skills even though she doesn’t draw humans; having a pillow to cover the face became a bit of a running joke. That pillow was a comfort zone for me even in my works, covering for the parts that I struggled to make better.

It’s time to face my fears, for they are known to bring total obliteration. Small steps, measured success. And failing better, for fook’s sake.


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By Shinyuu



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