Art · Weekend Links

Most Popular Color on the Internet, Etsy Tags,Turning a Hand Drawn Logo into a Vector, Skills vs. Talent.

I’ve been wanting Friday to arrive all week. I’m not sure why-we’re busier on the weekends-but it feels like vacation to me. And we need a vacation, but on the other hand we don’t. We’ve agreed that we’re far more productive when we’re juggling too much than when we have nothing to do. If only we could find that elusive balance, am I right?

On to the links.

The most popular color on the internet I won’t spoil it for you, but I don’t like the most popular color. I don’t use it in our home decor (if I can avoid it, it’s everywhere) and I typically don’t wear it. I do use it in my art pieces, because it feels less offensive there. I wonder why I have such a strong reaction to this particular color.

The Truth About Etsy Tags This is for you etsy peeps out there. Last week I felt like I was on top of things, SEO/etsy-wise, but I’m still learning (and since it’s always changing we can never truly be on top, a sobering yet encouraging thought). I switched up a few tags (just the order, mind you) and that resulted in a couple of sales. This article is good, especially if you want to bash things when you hear terms like “long tail” and “short tail”;)

How To Turn a Hand Drawn Logo Into a Vector I’ll occasionally joke that my method of doing things in Photoshop (I don’t have Illustrator yet) is google how to do the thing, google how to do the things in the article about how to do the things, and then google all the words I didn’t recognize in either article. I’m plodding along, having a lot of fun with effects, and one day, hopefully, I will be able to nod along as I read an article about how to do something in these programs. Rather than have multiple tabs open trying to figure out what the heck they’re talking about.

Skills vs Talents This is something I talk about -all- the time, at length (gird yourself). I know my kids have heard this lecture at least three times this semester. I’m blessed to be surrounded by people with talent, my family is practically oozing with it, but that talent wasn’t allowed to ever lay dormant-we treated it more like a skill set. I like to tell about my brother, who picked up the guitar at age 10 and annoyed everyone in the vicinity with his playing and singing (he actually was a good singer, but he imitated whomever he was listening to at the moment). 20 years later, after consistently playing, rocking the late-night bar scene, working early morning shifts, paying his way through college, expanding his skill set so he could afford to continue playing his music: he has an album and one of their songs reached #6 on the Christian Billboard Chart. (You can find the album here) I am incredibly proud, and looking at him now, you might not suspect the years of work that went into what he is today-but they happened.

My other brother is more like me, less flashy. We like to be in the background. I also thought, for a long time, that we weren’t blessed with the innate talents the other brother was blessed with, but I’m wondering if that’s actually true-we tend to pick things up pretty quickly, and our interests are wide and varied. But we both had to work at it: this brother has spent years perfecting his craft (video editing, audio stuff, photography-he’s willing to try anything that might occur in a video) and he’s now a successful freelancer. I spent my teenage years in their shadows, trying to figure out what my talent might be. I tried knitting, calligraphy, the flute (I actually was good at that), beading-and then life happened and I needed to bring in money so I put my crafts aside. I picked them back up and was pleasantly surprised to find that my teenage efforts had not been wasted: I’ve been drawing for a year and a half now, and have actually sold originals at prices I set. This tends to surprise the artists I know (“you learned how to draw last year!!!!“), and I hasten to add that I have a background in the arts with my calligraphy and learned dexterity with my beading. This calms them down;)

So my point, which may have gotten lost in there (I really do talk about this particular subject all the time), is that talent is nice, but you’re gonna have to treat it like a skill to be learned in order to do something with it. And the road is probably going to be hard, and not necessarily rewarding (at first). But knowing that you don’t actually have to have innate talent (I didn’t think I had any), you just need to work hard, -is- incredibly freeing. It means you can do it, whatever it is, if you’re willing to put in the work.

So Happy Friday, my friends. Art On-don’t ever stop.


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