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Kicked out of the "club" (too long to read)

I was just starting to fit in too and now it's like I'm the guy who told the poot joke at a business luncheon. Oh well, life goes on and there are other clubs.

Need a rewind for this little movie? It'd be a pleasure. I joined a forum for artists. After all, I intend to be one and it'd be nice to have "connections". The problem? They're very well-oriented in "fine art" and I'm... well, I know less than ten paintings by name, on a good day I can remember who painted 'em, and I recognize one style of painting on sight. Drip painting is pretty tough to mislabel and as long as you mention Pollock you'll do okay. Say some stuff about expression and ingenuity and you'll do fine.

The problem? As I've come to discover, fine artists are very formal people. They are refined, talented, sophisticated, and intelligent. I... aint. Never have been. I've been to a lawmower pull. It's like a tractor pull, but instead of purpose-designed farm tractors or semi trucks to pull the sled it's purpose-designed riding lawnmowers. Over the course of my life I've consumed at least some of every edible game animal that is legal to hunt in West Tennessee and enjoyed all but two. I own more knives than neckties, and more firearms than business suits. I'm... me. Rather than being carefully refined in the finest restaurants in New York I've been carelessly distilled on the north side of a hill in the Smokies.

I was actually fitting in though. I felt somewhat out of place but I managed not to screw up too badly. The methods there are foreign to me and I don't personally agree with some of 'em but I'll fight to the death their right to use them. Then I managed to screw it all up. They're big on drawing/painting from reference, that is that they like to look at a picture or a live model and then draw or paint a picture. It's a skill I respect because I tried it and it's incredibly difficult. The problem lies that it won't get me where I want to go. I know where I want to go and think it best to go there.

My goal, my dream, my ambition, is to draw tattoo style pieces which I will then put on products which I will then sell. In some instances I might outright sell the tattoo "flash" to local tattoo shops. It's a long shot but some long shots work out quite nicely. In my obviously biased opinion it's a market that isn't played out and there are quite a few folks out there who might absolutely love tattoo style drawings and art but who would never ever get a tat for one reason or another. To a point you can use reference materials but at days end you need to put pen to paper (or digipen to digipaper however this doesn't sound as cool) and draw. It's tattoo art and while much of it will be realistic quite a lot of it is not. Drawing from reference isn't as critical.

I poohed up by posting a picture over there of the first thing I ever drew with no reference. It was not realistic, it was not supposed to be, and it was the first true drawing I've actually done. I used a method I picked up on youtube and by following it I managed to complete a drawing that I could be proud of having drawn.

I'd never seen it happen before but I think all the air disappeared in the forum. The collective gasp created a vacuum which completely evacuated all the air from the area. I could hear eyeballs being drawn from the sockets by the vacuum, I could hear eardrums rupturing under the negative pressure and I think I actually heard a few jaws drop at the speed of sound. Or one of 'em saw my totally unrealistic work and played Russian Roulette with a semi-auto.

That thread died as soon as I posted and a few of the folks who'd been quite warm toward me became very cold very suddenly. I'm not sure but I think I got kicked out of the club unofficially. Nothing overt saying "noob leave" but they just started ignoring me in general. Kind of a "if we ignore him, he'll take a hint" sort of thing. I can live with that. I'd rather be an original me than a copy of anybody else and I'd rather fail doing what I want to do than succeed doing the same thing everybody else does.

It put things into perspective for me though. This place, I've had days when coming here was low on my list of things I wanted to do. I've had days when it's crossed my mind to go and not come back. Very quiet stuff, never anything huge or worthy of note, but I've had days. At the end of day though, this place has always done well to take me for what I am and support me in what I do. Not telling me I had to copy somebody else to accomplish anything, never telling me I had to do ____ & _______ & ________ or I'd never amount to anything. That forum? I was informed of what I'd need to do but because I chose a different but viable path I was out of favor, deemed a waste of effort on their part.

That place is like a cafe. good place to hang out, maybe have a cuppa and see what others are up to, but it's not home. This place is my home. I'm an outsider everywhere I go but I feel like I'm more at home here than anywhere I've been. I get frustrated at times like everybody but the longer I stay around the more I see that there are far worse places to spend time. :)

Comments

That sucks. People can get pretty elitist in those kind of 'specialized' forums. That's what I like about this site...there are people here who write incredibly well, like frickin' F.Scott Fitgerald or something, yet I've only ever seen constructive criticism for the people just starting their writing journey. That's pretty awesome.

Any artist, of any kind, who looks down upon or derides those just starting out, has forgotten that they themselves were there at some point too. Sounds like you're better off without that place. Just my two cents.

Also, have you tried making an account at DeviantART.com? I've found hundreds of artists there that I admire, there's tons of tutorials, and people are generally helpful ( not accounting for trolls.) If you haven't I'd suggest giving it a shot. I'm far from having a professional level of ability, but still get the odd encouraging comment or useful advice, and have learned a lot from that place over the years.
 
I've peeked over there a couple times but haven't considered setting up an account. I think I will. :)

Snobbery bugs me. To hear some on the other place talk, all of them were born knowing how to do what they do.
 
That sounds like a pretty snotty bunch and you have the right attitude about it. A group that expects you to change and conform to what they believe is correct isn't a healthy place. Good luck with your art and pursuing your passion.
 
TJ, I remember the day I realized that heads aren't circular and noses aren't just fleshy Ls. You'll get it eventually, just keep drawing, keep practicing. Don't be afraid to try new things, don't be afraid to share, either. Can't get better if we don't try.

Draw on, man. I'm happy to help if and where I can.
 
I'm sorry I loled, but the Russian Roulette bit was too good.

I think if tattoo art is your passion, I'd suggest hanging out with tattoo artist. Go to your local shop and look through some of their portfolios, get a raport going.
You hang around stuffy art types you either become the odd man out or you become one of them, and I don't think you'd liketo be either.
 
Rabber, thank you. I appreciate the kind words.

Dubs, man, it's all uphill but I'm finding traction here and there. Some days I lose grip and throw a little gravel but other days I dig in and chug along pretty nicely. :smile:

Emma, thanks. I figured that would give me a good contrast.

Kilroy, not a problem with the lol. I try to make people laugh if I can. Humor is handy. I have been hanging around the local shop and while the guy isn't a Rembrandt I'm learning lots about what I call "tattoo perspective". A cube has a known perspective. If you look at a cube in normal perspective and you can see 3 lines, you can easily figure out where the other five are. Tattoo perspective is a little more stylized and realism is a bit skewed. So am I, so it works. I do see how I could end up getting inked but life is to be lived, lol.
 
escorial;bt4756 said:
I really enjoy how you portray your life in words.....top stuff

Gotta keep on charging and try to find humor in the bad stuff, for there may be no good stuff happening at any given time. Thanks for the compliment. :)
 

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