Characters, Childhood and Creativity

When I was young I spent hours doodling and colouring books. My absolute favourite thing was drawing from comic books and creating characters and fantasy art. This was when I would get into that ‘flow’ that everyone is talking about these days. This passion waxed and waned through teen years but it never died.

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At 19 we had just moved to America and I started my first job here. I used to sketch while working on big smelly machines. One day I was fully engrossed in sketching a Grimm Reaper, my manager decided I must be suicidal and therefore needed to see company shrink. That right there was a defining moment for me.

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I started to hide my art unless it was more uhm you know, main stream. When I entered art school fantasy art was frowned on so I learned the more traditional. As I aged I moved further away from what I used to enjoy, as well as being pushed to be an ‘adult’ get a real job be responsible, don’t be a starving artist. I felt that childlike creative wonder disappear.

It’s only as I look old age in the face I realize Duh! Do what you love. I love painting nature from my photos. But I love, love creating characters, fantasy now using digital but can’t always do it from my imagination anymore, it’s like a word on the tip of your tongue but you just can’t think of it, finding it difficult to have those amazing thoughts and ideas I had as a kid.

With the new popularity of game and comic book art I wonder what I’d be doing now if I were not made to feel ‘bad’ about my art. Damn! I could be working for Blizzard or Pixar I so want to work for Pixar or Skywalker when I grow up……too cool.

Has your creativity been questioned, have you been able to keep that childlike imagination and creativity alive? And if so what practices do you use. Or have you found that age and responsibility have you feeling a little dried up!

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