3 Ways Art Students Often Hurt Their Own Chances of Success


Are you going to Art School?

Did you decide to go to Art School to follow your dream of becoming a professional artist?

I firmly believe that Art School isn’t necessarily for everyone, especially with the growing amount of resources and alternative forms of self-education to be found online.

However, whether you’re taking the more traditional route or teaching yourself by other means, your education is an incredible opportunity that you might not be taking full advantage of.

There seem to be 3 main ways that Art Students unknowingly decrease their own chances of finding success after their actual or virtual “graduation”.

1. Not Considering Themselves Artists

There’s something very peculiar that happens when the average person begins to attend Art School.

Before their attendance, they likely considered themselves to be artists in one form or another, because it was a passion that they pursued on a daily basis and hoped to one day turn into a career.

After becoming an undergraduate student, however, many people insert the term “aspiring” in front of the term “artist” for some mysterious reason. It’s not that they are all of a sudden less of an artist, but there seems to be some sort of psychological reason for changing their perception of themselves that I’m not qualified to explain.

When I was in Art School, I couldn’t help but notice how many of my fellow students talked about themselves as “aspiring artists” or talk about how they hoped to be artists some day.

To my mind, this is a mindset that can do a lot to stunt your creative growth.

Instead, I think it’s extremely important to realize that you are an artist if you create art.

You may not be as experienced, or talented, or successful as other artists, but one of the best things you can do for your creative life is to declare yourself as an “artist”, not an “aspiring” one.

No one else is going to give that title to you, nor should they. You are an artist as soon as you decide that you are, no matter how much you feel that you still have to learn.

It’s a well known fact that even in your professional life, you will always have more to learn about art and illustration, and there is no known threshold to cross, other than the one that you set for yourself.

2. Not Taking Advantage of Resources

I’ve heard from a lot of professors and Chairs of Illustration programs that there is usually a small percentage of students who take full advantage of the resources and information available to them in Art School.

While I feel that some Art Schools have some room for improvement as far as their education on the business side of things, there are a great deal of resources available to students in the form of the guidance of highly knowledgeable and experienced instructors.

If you’re not making the most of this opportunity, you’re not getting the full benefit of your investment, and we all know that Art School is expensive.

If you are taking initiative and shooting for the moon as a student, you’re one of the determined few who will have a much better chance of making a living as an artist.

3. Depending Solely on Art School for Their Education

No matter what quality of education and resources a particular Art School provides, and no matter how well a student is engaged in their education, there still remains another common practice that serves to hold people back from their success as a creative professional.

Some students become so dependent on their Art School that they forget about the wealth of resources and information to be found out in the “real world”. This may refer back to the idea of not yet considering themselves to be “artists”.

However, it’s never too early to do everything you can to round out your education as much as possible.

Don’t fall into the trap of seeing your school as the only source of guidance.

Books, websites, podcasts, tutorials, and yes, even artists themselves are all great resources to mine for further information and inspiration. This is, after all, where you’ll likely pursue your continuing education after you graduate, so why not start now?

If you’re an art student, you will likely notice many of your peers holding themselves back in these ways every day. The good news is, avoiding the pitfalls listed above will set you apart from your fellow students and increase your chances of success as an artist.

The choice is yours.

Posted by Thomas James on 07/20/15 under business
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Learn How to Get Published as an Illustrator

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Are you an artist or illustrator who dreams of seeing your designs in print?

Do you have an amazing book idea but have no clue how to get it published?

Few artists know how to pitch their work in a way that’s compelling to acquisition editors. That’s why literary agent Kate Woodrow created this online workshop to explore the different ways you can get your work published as an illustrator.

This 3 day online workshop will show you how to:

– Package your work into an idea publishers will love
– Find the right publisher for your book
– Navigate the publishing world as an artist

Check out Kate’s workshop Publishing Paths for Illustrators here >>

Posted by Thomas James on 07/20/15 under business
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The Colorful Work of Paola Saliby

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ILUSTRAÇÃO_ENTAO_CASA_E_JARDIM_MENOR -3 -2 -4 -1 Paola Saliby Website >>

Posted by Thomas James on 07/20/15 under artists,children's art
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Tim Probert’s Charming Illustrations



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Tim Probert Website >>

Posted by Thomas James on 07/19/15 under artists,children's art
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TREASURE by Janice Fried


Submitted by Janice Fried for the Illustration Friday topic TREASURE.

Posted by Thomas James on 07/18/15 under artists,weekly topics
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Treasure by Katy Nicolau


Submitted by Katy Nicolau for the Illustration Friday topic TREASURE.

Posted by Thomas James on 07/17/15 under artists,weekly topics
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TREASURE by Patrick Girouard


Submitted by Patrick Girouard for the Illustration Friday topic TREASURE.

Posted by Thomas James on 07/17/15 under artists,children's art,weekly topics
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Motion Graphic Novel – The Land of the Magic Flute

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The Land of the Magic Flute is a Motion Graphic Novel, a re-imagined version of Mozart’s classic Magic Flute. We decided to take opera and narrate it in a fresh and entirely new medium. We implemented the opera in a contemporary way, into the shape of a comic and a language that speaks to youth. Mysterious and full of secrets, atmospheric drawings and animations, along with seven complete arias and a music concept which plays with excerpts from Mozart’s composition, The Land of the Magic Flute Motion Graphic Novel creates an unforgettable visual and hearing experience.”

Experience The Land of the Magic Flute here >>

Watch the trailer video here >>

Posted by Thomas James on 07/17/15 under animation,comic
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Pick of the Week for GARDEN and This Week’s Topic


It’s Illustration Friday again!

We’re ready to announce this week’s topic, but first please enjoy the wonderful illustration above by Veronica Grech, our Pick of the Week for last week’s topic of GARDEN. Thanks to everyone who participated with drawings, paintings, sculptures, and more. We love seeing it all!

You can see a gallery of ALL the entries here.

And of course, you can now participate in this week’s topic:


Here’s how:

Step 1: Illustrate your interpretation of the current week’s topic (always viewable on the homepage).

Step 2: Post your image onto your blog / flickr / facebook, etc.

Step 3: Come back to Illustration Friday and submit your illustration (see big “Submit your illustration” button on the homepage).

Step 4: Your illustration will then be added to the public Gallery where it will be viewable along with everyone else’s from the IF community!

Also be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter and subscribe to our weekly email newsletter to keep up with our exciting community updates!


Posted by Thomas James on 07/17/15 under artists,IF news update,weekly topics
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Comics Illustrator of the Week :: Brandon Graham

















It was a rare “event week” for me at the comics shop with the much anticipated release of the new comics anthology Island! Brandon Graham, the creator, editor, and cover artist for Island is our subject this week. Graham’s work is inspired by classic European and Japanese(manga)comics. He started off drawing comics for Antarctic Press & Radio Comix, some being pornographic(see Milk! #7, etc.).

Graham would go on to work with the infamous Meathaus collective and to creating his own independent titles: Multiple Warheads and King City. I was fortunate to meet the super-friendly Mr. Graham back in 2012 during his Multiple Warheads: Alphabet Tour and he was kind enough to contribute to my convention sketchbook!

Brandon Graham is part of a new age of Image Comics, which has overtaken the “Big 2″(Marvel/DC) in the original content department. Recently, Graham, along with artist Simon Roy, “re-imagined” Image Comics co-founder Rob Liefeld’s Prophet to much critical acclaim.

Island #1 is an over-sized comic magazine published by Image Comics and features work by Brandon Graham, Marian Churchland, Emma Rios, Kelly Sue DeConnick, and Ludroe. You can check out a preview here. The series will be released on a monthly basis.

You can see the latest news & art updates for Brandon Graham here.

For more comics related art, you can follow me on my website comicstavern.com – Andy Yates

Posted by Andy Yates on 07/16/15 under artists,comic,weekly topics
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