Comic creator. Painter. Nudist. Fights of existential terror with kaiju movies.

cookedbrett@gmail.com

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One Month Down

So. We're at the end of January. If it's any indication of how the rest of the year will go, I should be just fine.

I'm sitting on some finished things that haven't gone public yet, including illustration and design for an album. Since last week I've been working on a design for a beer that a friend's brewery plans to release later in the year. I sold a painting and some buttons (did I mention that I have a button maker now? I have a button maker now, hit me up if you need buttons), I made the entirety of Cannonball Fist available as a free PDF on my Gumroad page, read 3 different ebooks on naturism, paid off my credit card, and more. Here's a poster I did:

Here's the really big thing: last week, a local cidery posted about looking for artists to show their work in their taproom. I sent them a message along with a link to this site, and they asked if I could show some paintings! I'll be setting up there in March! I declared that I wanted to show my work in some galleries, and while this isn't quite like a "real" gallery, it's a really cool opportunity in a neat venue all the same. I've already cranked out a new painting, and my plan for February is to do at least a few more if I can. This one's called the Ghost Behind the Barn:

Additionally, days later, a friend who works at the Bristol Public Library with my girlfriend asked if I wanted to show some work in their small gallery, probably in May. I had to submit an application along with a proposal for what the show would be, which I turned in on Saturday, so now I just have to wait and see what the curator and gallery committee think. Fingers crossed...

...Yeah. Two opportunities to show my work popped up within the same week. Some FRAG people are talking with the cidery about setting up a group show and maybe some other events through them, and we've got two shows we'll be doing at the same venue as the Holiday Bizarre, too. I'm still only signed up for two comic conventions, but at this point, I think trying to get into any more would be overkill if I'm doing two solo shows and FRAG stuff on top of that.

(there's always the chance that any of this could come crashing down for any number of reasons, and those possibilities serve as a gently humming anxiety in the back of my head, which sucks, but I can manage it)

OH: you'll notice in the sidebar on the right that I've set up a Ko-Fi account. If you like what I do and want to tip me, click that button and you can send a few bucks my way. If you'd rather not, that's fine too. It's just something new I'm trying out. A page for commission prices is on its way, probably after I get more paintings and design projects knocked out and have the breathing room to take some on, so be on the lookout for that.

What I REALLY want to talk about though is figure drawing. This year's kicked off not one, but two meet-ups, one with my own group and one with FRAG.
First off, my own figure drawing group has been renamed as Defining Bodies, and I've set up that Instagram account to share our work. Go follow it if you're into that. Our first meet-up of the year was the 14th, and our next one is lined up in a couple of weeks. I'm putting more effort into making our meet-ups more consistent, hopefully monthly. Since forming in April 2016, we've only had 12 events altogether, and I'm hoping to do way more in 2018. We've added some new artists and models, which is really exciting, and maintaining the Instagram account should hopefully help me stay focused.

FRAG figure drawing this past Saturday was fantastic too, and I took the opportunity to stretch my legs a bit and try some new things. Inspired by my friend Alejandro's recent sketches, I took some highlighters and gave them a shot, with cool results. You can see more in my portfolio, too.
I don't know why figure drawing is so important to me, why the human figure is my favorite subject in art, or why it warms my spirit in a way so few other things do. It is what it is, I guess. There's just something about it. It requires a level of thought and focus that other work doesn't, as well as a level of trust and interaction that just isn't there in other things I do.

I'm not sure what I'm trying to say. I think figure drawing is helping me become a better artist for sure, but it's also helping me become a better person as well. It's made me open up more, feel better about my own body, finding power in vulnerability. I want to keep doing it for as long as I can, and keep getting more people into it.

That's all, I guess. I'm feeling good about things. I know things will go wrong, problems will arise, but right now, tonight, after a month filled with drawing, painting, and going after opportunities, I feel like I can tackle anything that comes my way. We'll find out, one way or another.

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