Ancient Secrets of Becoming an Artist Part 1

From a professional video game artist

Ancient Secrets of Becoming an Artist

I’ve been a video game artist and animator for over a dozen years, and I get many questions about how to get into the field, so I’ve compiled some advice. 

It is simple, but don’t be deceived. 

FIRST LIST OF THINGS TO BE AN AMAZING ARTIST

Illustration of Paper & Pencil

That’s it. A thick, ol’ pack of white paper. Pencils. (Ticonderoga is excellent.)

That’s it?

That’s it. That’s where you should start.

But what about a subscription to Photoshop? A $2000 personal copy of Maya?

Image showing a paper and pencil next to a pile of cash with an expensive application on top

Don’t worry about expensive programs.

They DON’T help you become a better artist like an instant fix. They are just tools.

Just like buying a fancy car won’t let you drive better, buying expensive programs or tablets won’t let you draw better. All the bells and whistles will only distract you. Instead of learning how to draw and create appealing art, you can get caught up in using the cool photoshop cloud filter. (Not that I ever did that.) And no one will hire you because you can use the photoshop cloud filter. Computer programs will give you MORE LIMITATIONS than help at the beginning. You need to draw a lot, all the time, and being stuck at a computer isn’t going to do it.

Illustration of a fancy car

And sure, a great car will be important later when you are in the races – you will want to be savvy with the programs of your art field – but have patience.

Art supplies can be expensive, but they don’t need to be. As a college student, these were my main supplies. And as a professional, they still are. Simple pens, pencils, paper. 

The great thing about reams of white paper is that they are so darn cheap. Burn through two hundred pages? No problem. And a great problem to have. In fact, TRY TO HAVE THIS PROBLEM.

You can even get the different weighted paper once you start having a preference. Fancy!

I will talk about what you can focus on with your drawings in part 2! Good luck and start drawing!

Rose Ledezma
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