After setting a goal of practicing my digital painting two hours daily and keeping to it for about half the year, I kind of took a break from it. I'm very proud of my hard work and progress for those first six months or so, but my social life kind of exploded afterwards and I wanted to take advantage of that. So I kind of put a hold on my art and have been having a blast with great friends. I still sketched and doodled quite a bit, but completed fewer paintings and did less studying.
Part of this is because I've never had so many awesome people in my life before, and the other part is because I felt like I was working so hard at my art that I was losing sight of why I was doing it and what I wanted out of it. It was sort of becoming a second job that I had to clock hours into instead of a creative form of self-expression; and I felt that I needed to change my approach or perspective in some way in order to avoid what I felt was a road to lifeless paintings.
I was kind of inspired by a statement I had heard in the podcast "Sawbones" where Sidney said something about in order to be the best doctor she could be, she also had to be the best her that she could be. So I've kind of stepped away from my art, and I'm attempting to get a new perspective on it and why I want to do it, or what I enjoy about it. I feel that the 2hrs/day practice was lacking what I enjoy about art.
So now I'm trying to find the balance in my life between art, friends, and me time (doing nothing important/productive) while also trying to push my art and experiment more. I'm reviewing the work of artists that I like and reminding myself of what I like about art. I'm pushing the form more, adding more energy and emotion, overemphasizing movement; basically cartoonifying figures. Work that I admire most is usually created by animators or artists with training in animation, so I'm attempting to emulate a lot of what they do while still doing my own thing. Hopefully, I can work towards adding more life to my illustrations while also making time to experience life.