Greetings to my 7.3 readers! I enjoy spending an hour or so looking at what folks put out on Youtube. Albeit learning a new technique on the guitar, watching someone do something extremely stupid and laughing my butt off at them, or learning something new and exciting about art. I did however, see a video the other day that truly bothered me. In the beginning of the video, it said in bold capital letters "WANT TO DRAW LIKE ME?" I thought the hyper realistic drawing of SpiderMan looked cool at the end of the video, but in the end I have to say "NO, I DON'T WANT TO DRAW LIKE YOU, I WANT TO DRAW LIKE ME!" I am not disrespecting the talent of the person who created the video as he obviously spent years learning his technique. If I'm disrespecting anything, it's his bold statement then not taking the time to do some type of instruction along with the video. But that's just me being a bit bitchy.
I don't want, nor can I draw like anyone else but me. I may use techniques that other's have discovered many years before I was born, but I will only and always be able to draw like me. I have had students say, "I wish I could draw like you" and I always reply with a comment that on the surface sounds rather brash. "You can't draw like me." Jeez what a jerk! Fear not, I do follow it up with "You can only draw like you, and that's a good thing. I will never be able to draw like you as I can only draw like me." What!?!?
I can only inspire someone to draw or paint. They might learn my techniques but their life experiences are different than mine and their influences are different than mine, thus their drawings and paintings will be different than mine. I was first influenced by the Sunday funny pages. Peanuts, The Born Looser, Dennis the Menace, and Tumbleweeds among others. Then I learned about Don Martin from Mad Magazine and my first steps into drawing real people, Marvel Comics. When I got older, some of my friends were drawing things that I could only dream of drawing and I made the statement "Jee, I wish I could draw like them." We all progress at our own speed and it depends on the amount of time we dedicate to what I'll call our hobby. So I spent many hours drawing, sketching, scribbling, crossing out, being frustrated, then making something pretty cool.
When I learned about other artists, Michaelangelo, Rembrant, Leonardo Di Vinci, Norman Rockwell, Richard Amsel, and Drew Struzan, my style and technique changed. So, my style is a combination of cartoon, fine art, and illustration. These are the influences make me the artist that I am. Every mark that I make is based upon the artist that have influenced me throughout my life.
So go out and get influenced! Copy a Rembrant or something drawn by Jim Lee or my friend Jason Palmer. Learn something new and when you do I'd love to hear about it. The only way that we get better at anything is learning something new. Now that you're influenced, go out and make a mark.
P.S. Another great influence is nature. Get outside and learn what influences the beauty of nature can teach you.