Pump up the Volume – Jacob Walker

Art, Blog, Business

I want to use this forum for a Friday Focus Post in order to spotlight some really cool artists that are making a name for themselves and share this with my friends.

A couple of years ago, I was introduced to this artist by my friend, Tony Steele. We ran into each other again last November at the One Fantastic Weekend art workshop where we spent four days talking about creating art, discussing the business of art, and focusing on our own art projects. His name is Jacob Walker. He’s been forging a career for himself through graphic design and his art work. If you are a fan of H.P. Lovecraft you should check out his website at http://www.jacobwalkerart.com.

jacob

He has just finished a very successful Kickstarter campaign for his pen and ink drawings inspired by the works of H.P. Lovecraft. His art book, has also become a coloring book and I’ve been watching it develop over the past couple of months. It’s been exciting to see this develop and watch his success.

His artwork speaks volumes by itself. I strongly encourage you to check it out and if you happen to see him at a convention, go introduce yourself. His work is spectacular.

 

 

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Website Updates

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It’s my goal to have a new website by the time you see this post.  My plans are to update my site with Squarespace.  I’ve had an old site at http://www.kirktaskila.com but it has not been what I wanted.

The things I want to see different about my site is that the landing page needs to be a page that will be an art gallery.  There will need to be a seperate page for ordering prints of my art and a page that will take you directly to a store where you can buy online.  My current site doesn’t have the store feature.  This needs to be part of my site.  Squarespace has this built in feature.  Several friends have recommended this site so I hope that this will be in place in the next few days.

I’ve never been well versed in website building. My graphic design training didn’t cover web design, thankfully more and more of these web building sites are user friendly.  My current site has not been very good with being user friendly.  I’m scheduling this post for this Thursday.  I should have a couple of evenings this week to work on this.  Please bear with me as this site is under construction. 🙂

So Many Art Classes

Art, Blog

Since 2012, I started to get back into my art.  Now the best advice I have is to keep working on your art every day.  EVERY DAY.   Do I follow my own advice?  No.  But I give great advice.  I should follow my own advice but that is another post.

I’ve taken and spent a lot of money over the past few years taking art classes.  I’ve gone to weekend classes, week long classes, taken online classes and watched an untold number of youtube videos.  There are a lot of options out there to learn art.  Some free, some cheaper than others.

One of the best thing about taking an art class or seminar is getting a chance to meet other artists.  I’ve met people from across the country.  Some really amazing people.  Some who are established artists making an incredible amount of money.  Some are changing their careers trying to break into a new field of art, and some like myself are starting to build a new art career.  This has been my favorite part of the art classes.

This summer I will be going to the Illustration Master Class in June.  This is the most expensive class I have paid for.  It is also an opportunity to spend an entire week working on art, each day and every day.  I will have the opportunity to focus entirely on oil painting.  I also have the benefit of having some of the greatest illustrators in fantasy art teaching me.  It’s something I’ve been looking forward to for most of the past year! This class is almost $3000 dollars and has been a big investment.

You don’t have to spend that much for an art class or a seminar.  There are MANY good programs and seminars to investigate.  Online programs, and videos can teach you a lot.  If you have an interest in watercolor painting, oils, drawing or sculpture there are some great teachers who are posting videos online about these topics.  Check them out and see if they are of interest to you.

There have been several great art podcasts or critique shows that I have become devoted to.  The first was the weekly art crit group but I’ve been following One Fantastic Week each week.  This weekly show has introduced me to a lot of new artists that I’ve never heard of but found to be great artists.

Depression and Getting Motivated

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There is a lot of depression in my life.  I’ve been dealing with my own depression for a long time.  It was at its worst when I was a teenager.  Now, it’s not too bad.  The biggest issues for me is that I deal with a lot of depression at work and talking with people in my personal life.

I recently had a friend unexpectedly die.  Another friend has lost his partner of 32 years.  Both create different reactions, depending on the personal relationships you have with the person.  Losing a loved one is a specific type of depression, called grief.

When depression starts to affect me, I often feel unmotivated.  Over the past year, I have kept a bullet journal to address the tasks I want to accomplish when I get out of my full time job.  It may be household chores, or art related, or social activities I want to get accomplished.  When the depression hits I often am unmotivated.  I can check my bullet journal and find I’ve not made a list or notation in it for a week or more.  It’s not a good sign and I need to make changes in my life.

Being a social worker, I hear a lot of bad things each day.  It’s not easy, but I try to use my art as a means to “save my soul” as I call it.  A few years ago, my depression was getting bad, and I was getting burnt out.  I needed to find something I wanted to do just for me.  I chose art.  I’ve always loved art and wanted to get better at it.  I started to work on it again, I have been taking a lot of classes on Art since that time, and it’s been something that I can do just for my own satisfaction.

Working on depression must be a personal thing.  Nobody really knows your pains, frustrations and trials but you.  If you want to change your life, you need to find a solution that works for you.  Working on art and keeping a bullet journal have been good tools for me and if you are dealing with depression, I urge you to get out and try to find your own solution.

Out with old and Updating the New

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It’s been awhile since I’ve written a post here. Over the past few months, I’ve been having more and more frustrating problems with my home computer. Malware and viruses that I can’t seem to remove. I’ve been debating if I wanted to reformat the system or just buy a new computer. In the end, I’ve chosen to buy a new system.
My new machine has a 17.3″ screen, one Terrabyte on the hard drive, and 8 Gigabytes of RAM. It is a thing of beauty. I’ve been spending the past few weeks uploading the software I want to use on the computer. I have a working Photoshop copy as well as my Desktop publishing software again.
So far I am very happy with this new machine. Windows 10 is slow but it is very functional and I like all the things it does. For a machine of this size it was the cheapest I’ve ever paid for a laptop. You should be able to see more activity from me when I’m home. The problems I was having was deterring me from even wanting to fight with my computer. It made all digital art a problem. You should be seeing more in the future.