Day 11 of 30 days, 30 illustrations

Day 11: Black Lungs

I don’t want to say too much about this illustration, as I hope the image should speak for itself. One thing I will say, that I have thought about for years now, is that I think if we, humans, could open our front body up like a door and see everything inside, I don’t think we would do half the things we do to our bodies. Maybe I’m wrong, maybe we are inherently designed to neglect facts and self destruct.

I think smoking will become illegal in the UK when the amount it costs the NHS out ways what the government makes from tax on sales of tobacco and cigarettes. But not sure that day will ever come.

When asked what surprises him the most in a recent interview, the Dalai Lama offered this insightful response: “Man. Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.”

Black Lungs HOLLY SHARPE 7dpi

Holly
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30 days, 30 illustrations.

Studio photo 2017 HOLLY SHARPE

^ Photo from my studio space in Glasgow ^

“It’s only after you’ve stepped outside your comfort zone that you begin to change, grow, and transform.”  – Roy T. Bennett

Today, I want to introduce a project I have set myself that I will begin tomorrow. The clue is in the title: 30 days, 30 illustrations.

Something of a 30 day diary, but more in illustrations with a side dish of words. My plan is to draw things from my life, from my day, which will sometimes be mundane, or superficial things that I have done, bought, used or eaten. But I also hope to include some illustrations that will be more serious in tone and hopefully express something I feel strongly about, or address an important issue or something I have been thinking about, and try to capture that in an illustration. Needless to say, there will be a varied range of different illustrations over the 30 days!

I have many reasons for setting myself this challenge, some of which are:

  • I work well with deadlines. When something needs to be done, I get it done. I am pretty self disciplined most of the time – you have to be when you are self employed. But, there are lulls, and deadlines help. Restricted time helps – to an extent. And I go off on tangents, A LOT, I always have so many ideas and I want to follow them all, but I do manage to recognise this sometimes and reign it in to train myself to finish the thing I am working on before I move on to the next… it doesn’t always work that way and sometimes the creativity gets the better of me and takes the lead. But I hope with this it will mean I have no choice but to stick to it. As someone wise once said, “You can do anything, but you can’t do everything”.
  • To improve my drawing skills by trying things I don’t usually draw and things that are out of my comfort zone. I think it is important to always be trying to improve you skills and challenge yourself.
  • Develop my gratitude for things that may sometimes go unnoticed. By reflecting on my day, and thinking about what to draw will force me to slow down, stop and think about what has happened. What are the little (or big) things that I have been doing, been given or tried etc. I think this will help me to be even more grateful and notice these things more than I already do.
  • Expand my portfolio – I already feel that sometimes I struggle with trying to fit myself into the title of either ‘artist’ or ‘illustrator’ and by doing this I want to utilise and demonstrate more of my ‘illustrating’ skills.
  • I hope it will allow people to get to know me better. It is hard to get your personality across sometimes through the internet, but I hope by giving more of an insight into my life that people who follow my work may be able to understand more of me!

So, stay tuned for a new illustration every day, for 30 days, starting tomorrow!

I will also be posting them in the news section of my website.

Thanks again for following my blog and for taking the time to read it. I’d love to hear from you in the comments below if you are thinking of setting yourself any challenges for any lengths on time?

Holly

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website: http://www.hollysharpe.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/hollysharpe_drawings/

“‎Hold yourself responsible for a higher standard than anybody else expects of you. Never excuse yourself. Never pity yourself. Be a hard master to yourself-and be lenient to everybody else.” – Henry Ward Beecher

This year.

This. year.

This year I want to live life like I am running through a meadow, with the fresh air on my skin and the breeze in my hair. I want to remember that I have so much space, and freedom, to live however I want to live. I can run free through the long grass and the wild flowers. Breathe in the nourishing air and the glowing sunrise. I can dance under the clouds and amongst the stars. And at the same time not be afraid to run close to the edge, to plunge into the water below and be ready for new adventures and possibilities, or wherever the tide may take me. And to know that I can visit this wonderful place whenever, and wherever, I want.

Happy new year everyone! I hope you all have a wonderful 2016 and remember what it is that is most important to you,
Holly x

Light - instaG -H.sharpe

‘Light’ – new watercolour

 

 

 

 

 

When your ideas exceed your time = creative dilemmas

too many ideas

I posted the above photo on my Instagram earlier and a lot of people commented on it saying they felt the same. The response to my sharing of this feeling, inspired me to write a blog post about it, because apparently that’s what I do now…

Sometimes I have so many ideas going on in this little head that I feel like my head is going to explode, or my brain, or my heart,… SOMETHING is going to explode. It can be so all –consuming, so overwhelming that I literally don’t know where to start. This is becoming a problem which often presents itself in one of the following two options;

1. I don’t know which idea to pursue, or proceed with, so I don’t start, I do nothing, I procrastinate, I tidy my studio, I reply to emails, I do yoga, I do anything but create and follow through with the idea/s. I am quite sure this is a common thing for creatives and has been written and talked about a lot (for example in ‘Turning Pro’, by Steven Pressfield, he talks about this amongst other things…), = resistance.

2. I start loads of different things, and don’t finish any of them, or finish some of them, and get all confused again because it seems to have no relevance to what I actually want to do, or to the ‘path’ I previously thought I was trying to take my work and career on. This happens a lot, and the trouble is knowing, and figuring out, and deciding, which ones to carry on with, which ones will I gain the most from, personally, for others, and financially (which unfortunately has to come into it on occasion)??

So, one of my ‘new years’ resolutions’, if you want to call it that, is to try and be more focused and try to not go off on tangents and get distracted as much… If I start an idea, I would like to decide fairly near the initial commencement of said idea whether or not it feels right, if I feel like I have enough fuel, and excitement for the idea to see it through. And if yes, I want to almost force myself to make sure I finish it. This is going to be a delicate balance, because if it is something creative we are talking about, rules and regulations don’t tend to mix well with it (not for me anyway). I think one solution, for me, is to create enough space from the work, I generally always have more than one project or commission that I am working on at any one time, and this can be a good thing, as when I feel a bit tired with one thing, I can work on something that I feel more excited about (sometimes this is not an option when deadlines are involved of course…) and therefore hopefully always keep things fresh. I think a good idea to make sure I can sustain my motivation to finish things, is to allow myself time here and there, to just off load ideas, to sketch, paint, write, whatever, with no plans, no pressure on the outcome or the success of whatever it is. This way, I can go back to focusing on the things I want to see to the end and finish, whilst having ‘side projects’ that don’t need to mean anything, or necessarily go anywhere, but I guess act as some sort of release. And if they turn into something more than that, I guess that can only be a bonus.

This focus and drive to see things through to the end, also means facing the fear of the idea/s failing, which I think is often an underlying reason for the aforementioned ‘resistance’ whether we are aware of it or not. And failing, or not being afraid to, is an all important aspect to staying creative. If something fails, this is a learning experience and it usually means you have pushed yourself, so, I would like to try and maintain my focus on the ideas I decide to follow through on, irregardless of whether or not there is a chance they will ‘fail’. Whatever ‘fail’ means anyway.

I would be really interested to hear any of your views or thoughts on whether or not you feel like this sometimes? And if so, do you have ways of channeling it or ‘coping’ with it? And any advice on how I should manage my own hectic head full of ideas would be very welcome!

Thanks for reading,

– Holly
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Email: hollysharpe@live.com

Twitter: @hollysharpe

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