The end of a year and the start of the new year is the perfect time to look back on your achievements as a beginner artist. Often we are so focussed on what we can’t get right that we forget how far we have come. Why not take time to celebrate some of your successes over the year, however small. It is also a time of looking forward to tackle new artist challenges in the year ahead.
If you have just started art or have been learning for a while there are always new skills, techniques and goals to achieve. Here are a few of my suggestions for everyone:
Have A Mini Review
At the end of the year it is a good time to get out all your artwork and have a good look at what you have done over the years or months. When you come back to artwork with fresh eyes you see it differently, you are in a much better position to critique your own work after some time has passed. You will be able to see areas of improvement much more clearly and perhaps themes of things you keep doing like working too small or using too much brown paint etc.
Define Your Strengths
If you have been learning to draw and paint for a while you should have noticed that you find some things easier than others. It is important to recognise both our strengths and weaknesses, I meet too many beginner artists trying to be good at everything. Maybe it is time to accept pastels aren’t for you and tune into the areas that you can excel at.
Set Short Term and Long Term Goals
Many of us are good at setting short-term goals but I think some long-term goals are really important too. At first you probably don’t want to think long-term but having a long-term goal, however unachievable it may seem at the moment is very motivating. An example of some long-term goals could be:
- Exhibiting a piece of your artwork
- Drawing everyday for a year
- Joining an art course
- Planning an art holiday
- Learning a new media
- Getting a portfolio together for an art course
Whatever your longer-goal, however ambitious, start planning it now and then thinking how you will move towards it each day, month or year.
Schedule Time to Draw/Paint
The best made plans tend to go out of the window until we decide to schedule time to draw and paint. I know how hard this can be with daily life, work, children, household chores etc. getting in the way. This is why joining an art class is good, it is dedicated time for art. Be realistic, if you have a very busy life this might be the only way you can make time for what you enjoy.
Keep A Sketchpad
I have mentioned it many times in many posts but keeping a sketchpad is a good way of keeping your art interest alive. If you don’t have time to develop pieces of art then sketchpad work is one way to keep going with drawing and painting with quick studies. Use it to gather inspiration from daily life and you will never be short of ideas for final pieces.
Go To Art Galleries
It is a great way to be inspired and learn about art. Maybe set yourself a goal to visit at least one in the coming year to gain ideas about art and see how media can be used. Once you go once you will probably find yourself seeking out more exhibitions to see.