Hope you've been doing well!
Here's your weekly dose of resources, thoughts, 'aha moments' and announcements directly from my brain to yours!
- What I'm reading
'The Power of Habit' by Charles Duhigg
This was the first book that sparked my interest in the human brain and how we learn things (I’m fascinated about expedited learning techniques and learning things fast!).
This was one of the books that was the seed that influenced me to….
- Build a consistent art habit
- Build a gym habit
- Learn how to code
- Build a healthier eating habit
- Build a learning habit
Habits, are one of the key tools I use to learn new skills and stay consistent with them over the long run.
And with a bit of understanding of how the brain works, it’s pretty nuts what a bit of consistency can reward you with.
The key idea of the book surrounds something called the ‘Habit Loop’
It’s built up of 3 things
- The Cue: This is the thing that the brain is looking for to start the routine
- The Routine: This is the thing that you do, with little effort and with not much thought or brain power (could be good or bad)
- The Reward: The reward can be many different things, it could be physical like the sweet, sweet taste of a freshly baked doughnut or an intrinsic feeling of accomplishment.
I’m trying to build a new habit of reading and writing every morning.
My habit loop might look something like…
- The Cue: When I wake up and walk to the living room I’ll have a book sitting there or my lap top ready to go for my morning reading session.
- The Routine: I’ll Read and take notes as I go and I’ll set a time limit for 30 minutes minimum
- The Reward: Once complete I get an internal feeling of self improvement and progress, knowing I’ve mined some nuggets of proverbial gold out of these books that I can use in the real world
There’s a couple of other key books and ideas surrounding habits that are awesome, and I’ll be writing more about them in the future.
Habits are something that anyone can use to get better and stay consistent with anything, so if you’re struggling with your art habit, then I recommend diving deep into this topic, it’ll also help you out in all aspects of life.
- Aha moments
It’s always great to hear how other artists I look up to learned their skills, and listening to Jeff Watts from ‘Watts Atlier of the Arts’ talk about how he goes about learning a new style that appeals to him was really interesting.
When he finds an artist with a style he likes and wants to learn from…
- He might just focus on that one artist for a few months and really absorb their way of working
- He tries and captures their style by doing studies, then doing his own drawing but using bits and pieces from their style
- He’ll have their books/work beside his bed
- He mentioned actively observing the work, this is very underrated and I don’t hear enough people talking about this
Here’s the link to the video -> https://youtu.be/pH0mK1Vvz_E
Alex woo (Drawing the head from different angles) -> https://youtu.be/afIIuW5aJnk
Alex has taught at Pixar and has story boarded for Wall-E, Ratatouille, Finding Dory and more!
This one is about 5 years old, but I love how he simplifies the head.
Adam Duff (I Can’t Stay Silent About This Anymore) -> https://youtu.be/8eNI1chRoFc
This one was a VERY interesting look at the art education system as a whole and how it’s changing definitely worth a watch.
- Thoughts and musings
Learning with the garage door open.
The idea of learning with the garage door up was inspired by this article https://notes.andymatuschak.org/z21cgR9K3UcQ5a7yPsj2RUim3oM2TzdBByZu .
This is an article by Andy Matuschak who popularised the idea of ‘Digital Gardening’ which is based on the Zettelkasten note taking methodology of which I've been diving deep into lately.
Learning with the garage door open is basically just showing your process, the mistakes, the rough edges of your work in public.
It’s something I’m trying to do on my social channels (and blog coming soon!)
It’s a concept/practise that I’m really gravitating towards; and I wish I saw more of it in the art community.
So instead of showing final, polished pieces on social media all the time, I think you can create a more interesting place if you let people behind the curtain or (garage door) of what you’re working on.
I've found you’ll start to meet different people online that you otherwise wouldn’t have because it sparks an endless number of topics and conversations that just posting finished pieces of work wouldn't.
I highly recommend anyone, at any level of skill in any area of expertise give this a go, it no only helps get rid of the perfectionism side of things, but it can really help clear up and articulate ideas if you know others are going to be reading/looking at them!
Well, that's all from me! Until next week, stay consistent, use reference, have fun with it and remember; it's only pixels baybee!
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