Being an artist on YouTube is a special kind of personal torture. YouTube rewards regular uploads, but completing even a half decent work of art is not something that can be achieved daily or, most times, weekly. To do such a thing weekly means you must have a ton of free time, never have a bad drawing (I have plenty), all while leaving yourself time to edit the videos together.
I’ve been told making videos in bulk and then scheduling them is the best way to go about it – the best way to go about any kind of weekly social media update, really. It’s not always easy.
Recently, I decided to do a little cheat and make three videos from one painting. The first video was my Fixing An Art Mistake video, which starred a less than flattering pencil and water colour of the Mandalorian. Later, I uploaded the full time lapse of that. The third video was of Bioshock character, Subject Delta, who happened to be a feature in this painting too.
Viola! Three videos with one art piece.
Believe it or not though, I didn’t actually do this for clicks. Bioshock is literally 15 years old and no one is talking about the Mandalorian at the moment, so these videos don’t exactly scream ideal content. I did it because it amused me. The drawing was a dumb little crossover fan art of two dads in armour with their supernatural adopted children, and literally no one cares about this parallel except for me. The videos were just supposed to add to the fun of it, that’s all.
Regardless, it might be a good technique to try if I want to keep feeding the YouTube algorithm. I might give it another bash, this time with a more serious ‘YT business’ approach or whatever the cool kids are calling it.
I don’t envy other YouTubers for the amount of work they had to put into their channels. I can’t see myself making any kind of money off of YouTube, or on this blog or my other one for that matter. As of now, YouTube is something I’m going for fun. How long it lasts or where it goes is a complete mystery to me.
I’m working on some Mandalorian fan art right now (Yes, again, shoot me) and I had a bit of a mishap with some water colour. Essentially, I applied water colour and it looked really bad and I nearly threw the artwork, the sketchbook, and my paints in the bin. The only reason I didn’t is because my Encanto fan art was on the back and I actually like that one. A classic artist conundrum if I’ve ever seen one.
Messing up is pretty much inevitable since I don’t know what I’m doing.. *ahem* buuut I decided to push on and keep going. And it’s the perseverance that counts right? Art is about not giving up on your dreams or something.
Anyway, this piece is still largely a WIP and I’ll let you know in, uh, a million years whether it actually ended up any good or not.
I find that, on occasion, I can be pretty good at drawing portraits. On others, I find that I’m good at drawing facial features but somewhere in constructing the face things go a little… wrong. Case in point, my latest attempt at drawing with coloured pencils.
Look, I’m aware it’s not terrible. But it’s not the person I was trying to draw. And it’s no where near realistic. The features are just a touch… off.
If you don’t know, this is Julian Bashir/Alexander Sidigg from Star Trek. You can see the likeness for sure but when you compare it to an actual photograph of him, all the flaws start to scream.
Why Is Drawing Realistic Portraits So Hard?
In my own defense, I am very much out of practice when it comes to drawing with colour. Graphite pencils are my go-to. Just compare Bashir with my drawing of One/Vecna from Stranger Things. While not perfect, I think it’s a little better.
While I was drawing Bashir, I noticed the problem with his… everything but by that time it was too late to change it. You can’t rub out coloured pencils. (Another reason I prefer graphite).
So I went to google, pathetically typed ‘why do i draw faces so baaaddddd’ and hit on a surprisingly mind-blowing result.
We often make the mistake of drawing what we think something should look like, rather than what it actually looks like.
I’m completely guilty of this. While I’m drawing, I think ‘that eye is surely not that shape’ so I change it. I think ‘that mouth looks pretty good’ even though it doesn’t look like the mouth of the face I’m sketching. I re-position the eyes, re-shape the nose, change the cheeks, all in the aim of ‘improving’ the wrongness of the drawing, only to make it more wrong. The end result is a lousy portrait with pristine features.