First off, I would like to say, if you are an illustrator, designer, photographer, writer, artist or art enthusiast, you HAVE to be going to Arts Quest events at BSC. I have gone to three of them so far and they have all been better then I can describe in my own words. If you are missing them because you are tired, or because you have an episode of [insert anything here] you are doing yourself an injustice. The Value given at these small seminars, is priceless and are free of charge to the general public. If you are missing out on these, please check them out.
Anyway, The Art Quest this past week featured the very well known illustrator, Kevin Tong. Last Wednesday, Tong gave a riveting speech about the professional field of illustration and poster design. The advice given from stories of his life and career experiences were some of the better I have ever received. The one that really stands out from the presentation, was the very simple advice of, "Be Fearless". It seems like simple advice on he serface. It sounds so easy or maybe even a bit obvious. but when he starts telling us how he lives it becomes very apparent by his career choices and lifestyle, that I am not as fearless as Kevin Tong. but maybe I should start trying to be.
I believe it is absolutely essential to be fearless as an artist, writer, or illustrator. I also think, this same theory not only applies to artists but to every person wanting to better themself. Fearless in this regard, means to always be looking forward. it means to never just accept something because its easy or comfortable. In order to progress as a professional and a person, it means to get out of that comfort zone and do something your not the best at.
Kevin Tong was telling us, Whatever you want to do, just start doing it. It is always easy to tell yourself you want something, but it is often a bit over bearing to imagine the amount of time, effort, money or help you will need to get yourself to that goal. To be fearless you have to start and you have to keep going until you get to that place you want to be.
The best advice I can give to new artists who are afraid is to produce as much and as often as you can. Produce things knowing they will fail. That way when they turn out amazing you will be surprised and if they don't work out it wont scare you from trying again.
Thank you to Tom Marple, Lance Geving, Michelle Kraft and I'm sure many others, for getting these speakers out to Bismarck!
Designer & Illustrator