Balancing Creativity

Managing your time wisely isn’t always easy. In fact, it gets harder as you get older. I can work up to four or five hours a night sometimes, which leaves very little room for drawing or writing. This can, at times, negatively affect my mood, as I have no time to draw or write to vent my emotions. It’s difficult to balance several honors classes worth of homework, going to the gym, and doing things I enjoy. I’m sure other people suffer the same problems. There are afternoons when I’ll sit down and start working at three thirty, and work all the way through until nine thirty at night. Even on the weekends, if plans are made, I won’t have time to do the things I love. The lack of breaks can be overwhelming, adding to already building stress from lack of vent time. For those of you struggling with the same issues, here are some things I do to try to save time and manage it better. There are only so many hours in a day!

Work During the Day: School usually goes from eight in the morning to about three in the afternoon, for myself. This means I have about six hours to work at home, starting at three thirty, before I start to get tired and lose focus. This isn’t even counting time taken out for the gym, eating, showering, and the like. So, I try to work during the day. I often finish homework from earlier classes in later ones, or during lunch, if I can. This can prove tricky if things need to be printed or sent around to people, but it can definitely help lighten the load and leave more time for leisure activities at night.

Draw/Write During the Day: It’s certainly not as relaxing or enjoyable to draw or write at work or school, but there are times when it may be your only opportunity to do so on a certain day. Sketching on notes or leaving a tab open on your computer for writing during a class or work period can help improve your mood if you’re feeling upset for any reason. It’s a nice break from reality, and can help you feel refreshed and ready to take on the rest of the day.

Compromise: This is one of the best ways to cope with a lack of time for drawing or writing, at least in my humble opinion. By incorporating your art or writing into work or studies, not only do you have a valid excuse to draw or write, but you have the chance to show your colleagues what you can do. Praise from colleagues/classmates, and especially from bosses/teachers, can make you feel like you’re on top of the world and can cope with any busy schedule the world decides to throw at you.

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This is an example of compromise. I had the opportunity to use my art program to draw this portrait of Mayella Ewell for a symbolism assignment while my English class was reading To Kill a Mockingbird.


Art Inspiration

One of the best ways to make improvements to your art is to look to others for inspiration. If you admire someone’s art, look into it. What exactly do you like about their style? Could that aspect of their style help you improve your own? The most important thing to remember, though, is to not directly compare your art. All art is different. Styles have unique quirks. Don’t be discouraged if you think some’s art is “better” than yours. It’s not. All art pieces have their own, special meanings.

Looking up to someone isn’t bad, though. If you like the way someone draws eyes, study the eyes in their drawings and let their style inspire you. If you think someone has a better understanding of anatomy than you, study the parts of the body in their art that you struggle with the most. Here are some people whose art I look up to:

Rea: This artist is on several platforms, but I check her YouTube channel the most. Her channel name is GinjaNinjaOwO, and I’ve admired her art for awhile now. She’s an astounding animator. Her anatomy is beautiful, and her style in general is very nice.

Noelle Stevenson: Noelle is the artist of the graphic novel, Nimona. This is probably my favorite graphic novel of all time. I read it for the first time about a year ago, and I’ve adored it ever since. Her art style seems so simple, but still has complexities and quirks that make it all the more lovable. It’s extremely inspiring for a more cartoony side to my style.

NaRae Lee: Narae Lee is the illustrator of the Maximum Ride Manga series. I read the original series about three years ago, and I’m currently rereading it, because it’s one of my favorite book series. I read the first two books in the manga series about a year ago, but over the past month or two, I got around to reading the last seven that are currently available. I absolutely love NaRae Lee’s art style. The proportioning always seems flawless, and the textures, outfits, backgrounds, and facial expressions are beautiful. Every panel in the manga is so well drawn. The quality continues to blow me away in every edition!kingdom-au-mia-design

*These artists have helped me grow a bit more comfortable with wrinkles in clothes, shading and lighting, and general anatomy and positioning. I’m particularly proud of the outfit design in this drawing.*


Writing Experience

Writing has become a huge part of my life this past year. My best friend and I are in the middle of writing a fictional book series, and have completed first drafts of our first three books. In school last year, everyone in our grade had to take a course called Language Extension, which was basically a class to encourage creative writing with little projects or prompts. A special version of the class was offered, where we’d use all of our time to write one short story. My friend and I teamed up, and now we’re three books deep. We started our writing at the beginning of February, and are currently in the process of editing the first three books, as well as planning a second arc in the series and a prequel (the picture below is the cover my friend made for book 1!). For both of us, writing fiction is honestly one of the most amazing escapes. You’re in control. It’s your world. Anything can happen. If I’m having a rough week, being able to go and write is extremely refreshing. We use a site called Wattpad to publish chapters roughly every week. It’s been really nice being able to use Wattpad, and it helps us stay a lot more organized. Whether people check it out or not, it’s nice to put our work out there. It gives a sense of accomplishment to this big project, and I’m excited to see where it goes.


Art Programs

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So, art programs. As I said in my previous post, when I was talking about the drawing I added, I’m still a little new to the program I’m using. I’ve been working on digital art for about three and a half years, and when I started, I wasn’t the most knowledgeable person. I used the one and only MS Paint as my program, and drew with a mouse. I had no idea how digital art worked, so I drew with these materials for about two and a half… maybe three… years. Finally, roughly a year ago, I got my first digital art pad (which I still use and love), the Wacom Intuos, as a Christmas present from my parents. I didn’t get around to using it for another two months, but when I did, it was amazing. Then, over this summer, I stumbled upon the art program I use today (that I’m still figuring out :D). FireAlpaca. These two upgrades have been pretty revolutionary in my art, and as I’ve grown in digital art, it’s helped my regular art, too. We can’t forget the good old fashioned paper and pencil, can we? Anyways, this is how I draw digitally for now, and I have to say, I’m pretty happy with it all. Even if I’m still learning the secrets of FireAlpaca. If you’re new to digital art, I definitely recommend these supplies. FireAlpaca may look intimidating at first, but once you start to get the hang of things, it’s a great program. The Intuous from Wacom is a great tablet to use, much better than drawing with a mouse! Just remember, always have fun with drawing, or anything you do. It makes the experience a whole lot better!


Hi new friends! Welcome to my blog! On this website, I’ll post about my writing, art, and maybe some books I’m reading or have read. Occasionally, I’ll tell a story about my life, but this is going to be a considerably rare occurrence. Anyways, I hope you enjoy it here! For now, have a doodle of my marshmallow son (this drawing is a little old, but I still like it a lot… even with all of the mistakes from using a new program ^w^).cloudy