Tag: Summary of Art

Ang’s Year in Art 2023 Summary [Video + Blog Post]

It’s time for one of my favorite things – rounding up the art for a year-end retrospective!  This year, I wanted to do something different, however, so in addition to this little round-up blog post, I’ve also narrated a video for your enjoyment!  For those who don’t have 15+ mins to listen to my longer form rambling, you can skim the major talking points here instead.

Enjoy and let me know what your favorite piece of mine was from this year!  Is there anything you’d like to see me do more of in 2024?

My Month-to-Month Summary

A better look at each piece, plus extra art I couldn’t fit into the month-to-month format.

How Was My Year?

It was honestly a rough one!  From my existential dread dealing with generative AI replacing Illustrators to a significant cancer scare that derailed all my best laid plans, I’ve come out the other side with the best outcome of a benign tumor.  In spite of the dark cloud of looming disasters, I managed to complete my Birthstone Goddesses collection after 6 years of toil!  It may not have gotten the big finish I wanted for that project, but I’m happy to free up my muse and attention for other exciting endeavors on the horizon.

My Level-Up Piece

The piece that taught me the most and helped improve my skills – “The Lamb”

I chose this as my Level Up piece because I was able to find a balance within it that brought me a step closer to a Tarot-inspired art style I’ve been nurturing of late.  I used line art to accentuate the form and bring in very subtle hatchwork, while also letting the image be painterly. It’s a hard balance to strike, but this image was my “Eureka” moment for how to combine my love of lines and painterliness!

My Personal Favorite

The piece that I loved the most out of the rest I made – “Leaping River Orchid”

Things just ‘clicked’ with this piece.  Despite being quite loose, this image still has a good sense of character and mood.  In trying to emulate the Arcane animated series art style, I unlocked something between that space of loose lines and color that makes for a very appealing visual look.  Perhaps it’s merely her cool hat that makes this my favorite?  Either way, I hope I can use what I learned from painting Orchid for future pieces like it!

2024 Art Goals

  • Make more videos & streams – While I’ve been dipping my toe into sharing more videos this year, I’d like to really up the ante in 2024. I’m hoping to create more narrated videos and be more present as a person in them to remind folks I’m a human, not an art machine. I also want more face to face time with you all by streaming! Now, I just need to learn how to stick to a streaming schedule which I’ve had a terrible track record at.
  • Learn Clip Studio Paint – I feel like I’ve stagnated the past couple of years because I’ve avoided complex images with multiple figures and architectural elements. I’m hoping to teach myself Clip Studio Paint so I can start using 3D models to create reference materials for complex elements so painting them will be easier.
  • Re-invest in myself and my artistic voice/stories! – For years, I’ve always intended to write more, but my Art Muse has always dominated my time.  With AI now intruding into all creative fields, I want to push my work to be more about my voice, which I hope will stand out from the increase in AI material that’s bound to happen in the next few years. I have something to say with my work and now I finally have the freedom to pursue this endeavor with full attention thanks to our newfound stability!


2023 was tough, but I’m stoked for 2024!  I feel like I’ve finally been able to slow down and heal in 2023 after literal years of health disasters, medical debt, house moves, and uncertainty.  Now, I’m able to approach a new branching path in my artistic direction in 2024.  I can’t wait to share it with you all!  I’ll be talking about the new and decidedly different work I’ll be sharing on this Patreon in the next entry.

Till then, onwards to 2024!  Thanks for sticking with me on this eteneral roller coaster of a ride.

– Ang

2022 Year-End Wrap-Up, An Existential Crisis, & Future Plans

EDIT: I’ve added a more thorough collage collecting my sketches and WIPs from 2022 as well. Enjoy!

2022 has been quite the ride!  As most of you guys know by now from reading here, I’ve had to take a lot of time off in 2022.  Not only did we go through an intense house move during an interest-rate hike and unfavorable housing market, but I’ve also been recovering from major shoulder surgery for tendon repairs from an old injury and subsequent physical therapy.  My art biz functioned on the bare minimum, mainly bolstered by the kind folks still supporting here on Patreon and my merch sales.

Thankfully, I still managed to draw at least one thing a month and that kept me sane and happy!  Even if my indulgent art resulted in sharing such an odd smattering of character art and writing here.  I hope to get back on task with my Birthstone Goddesses in the new year and keep these more exploratory pieces to sketchbook compilation posts while that project’s going on.

My Personal Favorite Artwork from this Year – The Pirate’s Kiss

This gift art for my good friend, Sam Hogg, was my fave from this year.  I had resigned myself to not making much art and spent a process of several weeks slowly chipping away at this painting in short bursts while just enjoying the painting process and learning new tools in Procreate. I hadn’t slowed down that much in a very long time!  It made me love making art again during a time I was feeling extremely burnt out on it and unsure of my future.  Thankfully surgery turned out okay after this painting was completed!

  • Read more about this piece’s creation here.

My Level Up Artwork from this Year – The Unmerry Band

Created for a Dungeons & Dragons game with friends, I pushed myself out of my comfort zone drawing vastly different looking characters, weapons, and body types.  My Genasi gal from this image also sparked off a whole NaNoWriMo inspiration adventure. 

  • Read more about this piece’s creation here.

An Existential Crisis

Unfortunately, this year has also brought us the wider proliferation of AI generated imagery, which has been a lot for me to process! I’ve written up a resources list of my research, should you want to read more about this topic.  I had played with this tech for a while thinking it could be a fun and useful tool to integrate into my process…until I learned that it functions by stealing artwork from the internet (including my own!) without the consent of artists to make its creations.  

We’ve now seen this tech spreading without much oversight and even a major publisher using it on a book cover. I’m not here to debate the merits of the tech, so please don’t start that debate in the comments.

For me, it’s made me LESS motivated to work on my more decorative art because I don’t feel it can compete with AI imagery in the same vein and MORE motivated to move my work in a direction where the narrative aspect takes priority to convey a message that I hope will make my work stand out from AI generated work.

For this reason, I’ve left longtime platforms I have loved for 20 years (half my life!), including DeviantART and ArtStation, which I’ll be using sparingly because they have allowed unethically sourced AI generated art to drown out human artists on their platforms and are common targets for unethical AI scrapers.  If you Followed me on those sites, be sure to look for me to be primarily sharing new artwork on Inkblot instead, with my presence still the same on IG, Facebook, Twitter, etc. for now.

Future Plans

I’m not giving up on art!  I still take joy in the act of creation, I just have less hope now that art can sustain me in a meaningful way within the illustration industry, which is already being flooded with AI generated competition, especially in the smaller independent arenas and even in some larger ones.  This is more incentive for me to work on what makes my artistic voice unique, to refine my traditional techniques, and to tell the stories only I can tell from my unique perspective.  

Thankfully, my husband and myself are stable enough right now alongside your support so that I can focus on my own personal IPs and stories in a way I never thought possible before now.  The advent of AI generated images has only helped convince me that pursuing my own stories instead of commercial work is less foolish of an endeavor than I used to think it was.

I still may try to pursue some of my dream commercial art jobs (IE. Magic the Gathering, TTRPG art, and pursuing more commercial book/comic cover work), but I want to stay focused on my own ideas rather than feeding an industry that grows more hostile and automated by the day, while continuously devaluing and underpaying artists.

What does this mean for this Patreon?  My plans have remained the same.  I’m moving forward with a re-launch of my Patreon (aiming for February) where I hope to wrap up my Birthstone Goddesses project over the next year or so and then I’ll be switching my Patreon’s focus to more narrative endeavors.  I also plan to shake up how I’m doing business now that I am no longer attending in-person events.  More specifically, I hope to do more online streaming, video content, etc. to invite you all into the process and get some of that face time back.  I really miss your faces and meeting kindred spirits at events!

I want to celebrate my Patreon’s re-launch with flair and am currently working on a line of Patreon-only merch for the occasion.  I’ll share more about the new merch, my evolving biz plans, and my specific Birthstone Goddesses Final Phase plans in a dedicated post soon, so stay tuned!

For now, this post is long enough, so I’m going to stop rambling here and wish you all happy holidays.  Thank you once more for making all the difference with your support this year, despite the fact I haven’t been able to give back as much as I’d like in return!  The downtime has been healing and invigorating for me and I can’t wait to put that energy back into my art and art biz in 2023.

We have a new home and studio to celebrate and a whole new path ahead.  Here’s to a 2023 full of passion and a glorious return to art-making for me!

♥ Ang

This Year On My Patreon + Year In Art Wrap-Up 2021

It’s still hard to believe this year has almost ended!  It started out rough (COVID, moving, burnout, quitting conventions, etc), but has ended in an amazingly positive place (Kev’s good health + new job, etc.).

I didn’t produce a lot of art this year, but I was also making a lot of invisible moves in the background to overhaul my web presence, sites, and shops.  I used a lot of what I learned this year to make big steps towards building a more sustainable art biz for myself without having to rely on conventions, which is looking to be a permanent change for me as we prioritize Kev’s health and risk factors.

Our Year On Patreon

Your support here has done so much for me, especially during the rough times!  Not only that, but every word of encouragement here in the comments or over in my Discord server have really meant a lot.  Every word of encouragement really keeps an artist going!

Fans and Patrons have helped me do the following this year:

  • Pay for lifetime subs for my websites’ themes and gallery plugins so I can save money in the long run
  • Up my budget for ads, which drives sales and helps new folks discover my art
  • Stay stable and have more peace of mind while we’ve endured struggles and medical bills
  • Afford the Making Art Work class, which has been so helpful for improving my biz this year

My Major Milestones This Year

  • Built a new site for the Gemstone Goddesses 
  • Started laying the foundation for the Birthstone Goddesses Calendar & Art Book
  • Participated in my very first Tarot deck with Temperance 
  • Started learning how to use Clip Studio Paint, an amazing tool

What’s Next?

I’m excited for next year, where I hope to keep making steps forward to finish my biggest ambitions for the Birthstone Goddesses and to keep pushing my art skills.  I have a pretty big list from class of things I’d like to start rolling out for the Goddesses (ie. pendants, totes, gift sets, etc.).

But first, I’m going to relax for the holidays and enjoy a much-needed quiet end of the year.

Thanks so much, as ever, for being here and for all who have supported this Patreon or have just been encouraging fans.  I know I keep repeating this, but it’s little things like that which keep an artist going, especially when times get rough!

Thanks for your kind words and thoughts.  I hope you all have a wonderful rest of the year!

♥ Ang