2016: From Challenge to Change

Hey Guys, Bea here! And a Happy New Year to you all!

This post will be dedicated mostly to my plans for 2016 and how I’ll be running my blog going forward, but before that, I’d just like to take a a brief moment to reflect on the past year, and how it’s changed me, as an artist 🙂

Prior to January 1st 2015, I was really struggling as an artist, just trying to find the right inspiration to get off the ground. Most of my time was spent working my day jobs, greatly dividing my attention. So, my art suffered, simply because I couldn’t find the time to invest in my ideas and the betterment of my skills.

But something clicked on that day, Jan 1st 2015, and I decided I’d stop making excuses for myself and just go for it. And to keep me motivated, I started this blog to not only share my work with the world and those who care to see it, but to document my process. From the start, I knew that this was going to be a challenge, because of how easy it is to start something and not finish it, and how tempting it is to give up when things get hard, and believe me, I had my moments lol. But looking back on that day, and at how much I accomplished by the end of 2015, by simply simply sticking with it, I would have never guessed that it would take me so far, as an artist, and as a person, or that it would bring me one step closer to my dreams…

That said, I have arts to share!

mar1

Despite all the hardships 2015 brought, it did not come without its rewards, and turned out to be a year of many firsts for me!

  • I went from producing maybe 3-5 pieces of art per year, to the over 50+ Illustrations and Sketches that make up my portfolio, as of today.
  • From those pieces, I created my first portfolio book, which also turns out to be my first full portfolio of new and original work since I left college over 5 years ago.
  •  I flew out to San Diego and experienced SDCC for the first time, and had the opportunity to sit down with major companies, like Blizzard, and Nickelodeon, among others, and received my first set of portfolio reviews, outside of school.
  • And, as of Nov 22nd, I decided to stop working my day job, and be a full-time artist– which is the news I’ve been waiting for the right time to share.

So, November 23, 2015 was the day I began working as a full-time artist. Ironically, this did not happen by me quitting. Instead, the company I was working for simply decided to close the division I was working in, and though they offered me a position working elsewhere, I figured instead that I would take this opportunity to give my dreams a try instead.

I had considered leaving on my own many a times, but this was a company that I had been with for almost 8 years. I knew the work, I did it well, I had been promoted, and I didn’t want to leave, for fear that if I did, I’d have to start back at square one… so I stayed. But when they told me they were closing out, It was like a door had opened just as that one was closing, urging me to…take the next step. To go for it, even harder.

Since then, I’ve had a lot of time to think about how I’m going to spend the extra time I have– and how this is all going to work out. To be honest, it’s a bit scary to think about. But like many of my friends, and people who I’ve met who reached the same fork in the road and made the same choice, I’m confident that if I play my cards right, and put in the work,  I’ll experience success like they have.

This brings me to the main topic of this post– My blog and my plans for 2016.

Posting Schedule:

After giving it much thought, I’ve decided to just scrap the Monday Evening Posts entirely, and for good reason. As much as I like the idea of having a regiment, I’ve found that in trying to stick with it, I’m more concerned with showing work for the sake of keeping time, than taking time to put more quality into my work, and the posts themselves. Instead, I think it’s best I post casually, when I have something to share, especially since it allows me to put more soul into my work, and my writing.

Goals and Expectations:

If I may, I’d like you take a moment to talk about the art shared in this post. I started this illustration back when I decided to let my job go, in November, and it began with me drawing myself in a wedding dress, holding my sketchbook, and art supplies as part of my bouquet. When my friends asked what it meant,  I simply told them, I love art, that I’m married to it,  and committed to my dream of being a “successful” full-time artist, so that someday, I will be able to tackle the ideas, stories and concepts that I’ve been stockpiling for years, to share them and be recognized in the big world of art.

Of course, like the girl in the constellations, Estelle reminds me that my dreams are like stars- some farther off, but all are within sight, and some even branch off into others. Though touching the stars of your dreams may seem impossible at times, the goal is to aim high anyways, and see where it takes you. I’ve learned that chances are, you just might hit your mark 🙂

The mark for this year? I want to focus on creating art that is driven more by narrative. Most of 2015, my work consisted of character designs.  Instead, I want to strengthen my ability to tell a story, and Illustrate. In addition, to keep my focus where it needs to be, I will be less concerned about how polished these illustrations are– and more about how well I communicate my ideas, so you can expect that most of my personal works will be either sketches, rough concepts or speed paintings. I’ll also be experimenting with various different mediums, like watercolor, pen and Ink.

So that’s what the art shared today is all about. Experimenting with different art mediums, my sketchbook spilling it’s pages of rough concepts, my ideas finding new life, and my dreams my goals– which embody and all the things I hope to share with you this year!

This post has gone on long enough though!  Thank you for reading, I really hope you all had an awesome New Year celebration,  and here’s to 2016! *Cheers*

As always, till next time, Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sketchbook Exclusive: Recovery

Hey Guys! Bea here, bringing you a forgotten classic from my gallery!

Forgiveness

Forgiveness- 1st

This is another old one, from as far back as 2008, and was one of the three Illustrations I did for the first stage of L Ron Hubbard’s Illustrators of the Future Contest, and was one of my first best digital paintings at that time, right along with the other two.

The story behind this one can be pieced together by the various clues left behind, but, it’s about a young man who lost his little sister due to a drunk driving accident, and even though he wasn’t responsible for her death, he always blamed himself for not being able to prevent it. What he doesn’t  know, is that her spirit is there, trying to let him know it’s okay, even though she knows he can’t see her.

One thing I’d like to point out, which is funny to me when I look through some of my old stuff, is that I happen to notice trends. In any work I’ve done that has an association with life and death, I always include either a little blue butterfly or in Mori’s case, a blue bird. So when I was looking at this, and I noticed the little butterfly that I forgot I painted, it just made me step back and say– wow, what’s up with me and butterflies and death >_<;

Speaking of which, here is another illustration I did– featuring a familiar butterfly blue

MybuttetflybigMy Butterfly

This is a  bit different, in that it shows a familiar butterfly that a girl notices– the big one towards the right. She follows it with her gaze– chases it, and runs into a boy who catches it. He opens his palm and they both admire it’s beauty–and in that moment, their love blossoms. They grow up, get married, love each other, and have a children of their own– all as this strange butterfly appears throughout their lives. Then her husband grows ill, and she’s left a widow, with 3 loving children at her side…further down the line, she’s an old woman, carrying along, when the familiar butterfly comes to greet her once again.

An Honorable mention for the butterfly theme– Chasma (property of Bea Jackson)

Some of you may recall me mentioning that I’m in the process of working on a short illustrated Story called Mori–hash1

Which is a story dealing with the concept of- death and acceptance. Before Mori, there was Chasma, which followers a similar concept, but is more defined, and deals with people in a coma, caught in a limbo of sorts, between life and death.

Con-TheLake

Ironically– and again this was by no planning of my own, The girl in this story is very similar to the one in Forgiveness, in that she too was caught in an accident, only instead of dying, she was severely injured which leaves her in a coma.

The simplest explanation I can give for this story, is that while in a coma, she’s carried into this strange world of limbo, by her Spirit butterfly.

Char-shy2

Char-Shy1She is then greeted by a guide, aka, a reaper, who deals specifically with souls that haven’t been able to move on, or visitors, aka, people in prolonged comas, like herself. Through him, she meets several other individuals in his troupe which consist of a fallen soul, a lost soul, a free spirit, and another visitor, like herself.

ChasmaReally basic sketches for me to remember the characters by 😀

If I do ever get to a point where I can bring Chasma into existence, it will likely be in the form of a graphic novel/comic since it’s story is far more expansive than Mori is, but it has definitely been on my mind for years.

On a side note, I’d like to take a moment to explain the erm, Title of this Post lol

I’ve had a really sucky month, as far as health is concerned. I spent weeks struggling with my bronchitis, and not long after recovery from that, thank goodness, something else happened. I’m not too keen on saying what it was, but my mom knew about it, I had her watching me to make sure I was okay especially since I was in a lot of pain and discomfort and was beginning to develop a fever.  So, drawing has been hard, which is also why I’m sharing a lot of older works, but I was going to ride it out, at least till Monday. I didn’t make it till Monday though lol, and my mom rushed me to urgent care after she heard me hollering in pain in my sleep. The visit to the doctor wasn’t fun, I had a minor surgery, I’m on some meds, and  lets just say, I’m feeling waaaaay better than I did this morning lol.

I love to draw, you guys know that, so creating art isn’t just about posting here with you guys, it’s something i do that makes me happy, clears my head and is a very fun and enjoyable experience for me, and when I can’t do it, or at least as much, for reasons as mentioned above, it brings me down, but I’m excited now, because I’m confident I can get back into it, full force, very soon:D and it’s also exciting to know that I can share it with you guys, and go in deep with my posts, like this one, since I have the energy to do it now.

So, thank you guys, for all your support!  More new arts coming soon! Till next time, Enjoy 😀