Category: Top Posts of the Year

Top Ten Posts of 2013

Another year has passed here at my little art blog and it’s time for the year-end wrap up!  Here are my most popular posts from 2013.

Have a year-end wrap up of my art too while we’re here.

1. A Solution for a Photoshop CC Brush Lag Bug across Mac and PC

Who knew my mind-numbing frustration with Photoshop’s CC’s early updates would be so popular?  The lag has since disappeared so I can only hope this means they quietly fixed whatever bad coding was responsible for such a widespread error Adobe refused to acknowledge during my support calls with them.

2. Are Conventions Worth Selling At?

A very candid talk about whether conventions are worth the blood, sweat, and tears we put into them in a Pros and Cons format.
A discussion about my first experience in painting a master copy and how this experience benefited me greatly.

4. My Portfolio Building Homework – Part 1

My answers to Jon Schindehette’s pointed questions on how to organize and build a portfolio with passion and purpose for myself following along with Jon’s portfolio-building class blog series.  All of these homework posts of mine were very popular and they were all in my top ten.  I’m only including the first part for the sake of variety of this list, but each part is linked at the bottom of the previous entry for your convenience.

5. Convention Report – IlluXCon VI

My first IlluXCon was literally life changing!  This entry collects my thoughts on how attending this con was worth my time and money as an artist and why exactly anyone who is an artist in the Scifi/Fantasy field should consider attending themselves.
Another very candid post about getting older, navigating long-term career goals, and personal introspection on gender, life experience, and all the rest!
All the ways that the iPad has improved my life, plus recommendations of handy apps that are useful for artists.
The origin story for how I got into the hobby of crafting leather masks plus advice for anyone else interested in picking up the craft.

9.  Anatomy of a Book Cover – Genesis Part 1

A breakdown of my sketches, drafts, and character design sheets for the Genesis book cover, a novel by Wade Garrett.
Another introspective post about recognizing bad work habits and mental routines with strategies on how we might combat them.
And there you have it!  2013 in a nutshell.  It’s been a rough year for me, personally, but now that much of the turmoil of health and life is behind me, the clouds have parted and I can see so much potential for greatness for 2014.  Here’s to the new year and inspiration for you and me!

My Top Ten Posts of 2012

Hard to believe we’re finally in 2013!  It sounds so futuristic. I remember when Scifi movies would say ‘In the year 2015’ and it would sound so far, far away!  Well now here we are and it’s the 4th year in operation for this little art corner of mine on the internet.  I thought I’d continue the tradition of rounding up the most popular posts of the year every time we ring in a new year.  I calculated popularity by seeing which posts got the most views in Google Analytics.
Have a rundown of my art from 2012, while we’re here!
Yay! Images make my text posts less boring.

1. Review: Noah Bradley’s The Art of Freelancing

This was my very positive reaction to Noah Bradley’s helpful and revealing video about what it takes to be a successful freelance artist. It is not a motivational video. It is pure facts and the truths of this business. Worth every penny paid and I’ve gotten some of the best advice from other freelancers in Noah’s Facebook group, which is only accessible to others who have bought this video.

A wonderful dialog between myself and other artists discussing my personal health issues and other issues common to artists, including weight gain, neck aches, etc. Some great advice shared in comments, all around!
An in-depth look at the creative thought process and info gathering that went into my painting, Persephone Queen of the Underworld.
A review of Stephanie Pui-Mun Law’s beautiful and inspiring compilation dedicated the Minors in her Tarot deck and why I thought it worth having in any artist’s collection.
My first ever Critique Corner post! I hope people will send me more to crit, as they are quite good practice for me.
A moment of angst and reflection on my part. I talked about everything I wish I had known before I got into this biz in hopes that it might help you guys out.
My experience in shopping for that holy grail of art tools, the Wacom Cintiq. I talk about everything from how to get a cheap price on it to a good bag for transportation.
A discussion of why it’s important to turn your artistic eye inwards to truthfully access your art and your career goals.
Talking about how to say ‘no’ to a job and why it makes almost every artist feel like crap.
10. DragonCon 2012 To-Do List
A run-down of all the tasks that go into preparing for a huge con like DragonCon!

Onwards to 2013 and another year of great discussion on art, inspiration, and all the rest here at this journal!

Top Posts of 2011

I’m stealing this idea from Hayley at Eventide because it seemed like a great way to wind down the year on this journal and to remember all that’s happened here in 2011!

I started this blog waay back in 2009, which feels like forever ago, and looking back helps me realize how this blog has grown into so many interesting pathways!

My top blog posts of this year (not including popular posts from previous years that are still some of my most highly viewed topics) aaaare:

1. Evolution of an Artist’s Alley Table Parts 1 and 2
I like to keep a record of how I display my artwork for my own purposes and so others might learn from my trial and error. These posts cover how my displays for art shows have leveled up over the years! I hope it saves ya’ll money and helps you to make your wares look their best!

2. DragonCon 2011 Con Report

The con report/review for my biggest event of the year!  I like to do a con report for every con I go to so that other artists might benefit from my working experience there.  DragonCon has always been my favorite event to go to each year and I learn something new no matter what!  There are also plenty of links to great costumes and silly videos we made in this post.
3. Ezio Mask Dev Diary (Parts 1, 2, and 3)
An in-depth walkthrough of how I created my Venetian Assassin Mask inspired by Assassin’s Creed 2.
Because everyone likes free stuff! This was my first ever book giveaway and hopefully not the last!

5. Commissions, Portfolio Reviews, and Study Sources

A comprehensive blog of study sources for traditional artists wishing to learn more digital work and those interested in game art.  Also announced my call for Portfolio Reviews in this blog (which I’m still taking on an ongoing basis!)
A glimpse at some of the many pieces I had going on for this year’s DragonCon.  Many of these pieces were sold before they were properly photographed, so this entry is the only record of them!
Another artisan craft tutorial on how to set a stone in a leather mask.
An in-depth review of my experiences with Artfire, another website much like Etsy that exists to serve the handmade market.
9. Sketch Diary: Angel of January (Parts 1, 2, 3, and 4)
An in-depth walkthrough of my piece “Angel of January” detailing the creative process, working with photo references, and learning new digital tricks.
Probably the most difficult entry for me to write, as it took admitting some of my failures of being an artist this year.  It really helped me get my thoughts in order, however, and put me in a better position to start thinking of solutions!
Now, onward to 2012!  I hope that my entries continue to provide helpful info to other creative professionals!  I write this blog not just for myself, but you, the readers, so if you know of any topics you’d like to suggest for me to cover in the coming year, please feel free to suggest them here in comments!
Till next year!