I tried to color that picture twice last night, no, actually three times, with entirely different methods each time. They all looked horrible. The painter-ish one had a bit of promise, but went south. The flat colors one stumbled pretty early on and never recovered. The other flat color one was a total wash from the start.
Stupid hands! Er. Stupid eyes!
I will search for inspiration and reference, and try again. Sigh.
Last night I spent a couple of hours grumbling and drawing and drawing and re-drawing and grumbling again. I had a picture in my head. Have had it for a few days. Never got what I wanted on the screen. In fact, what I saw made me doubt that I can draw competently at all. I hate it when that happens.
After all the thinking that maybe I should give up on this whole thing, I said to myself. "This is how it works. Tomorrow night, you'll draw it again."
And I will. From scratch. Because, otherwise, how the hell am I going to get any better?
Maybe if I was some kind of genius, talented artist I could whip off six great pictures an hour every time I sat down to draw. Maybe someday I'll get to that point. But for now, nine out of ten pictures is a slog through the muck, constantly cursing my stupid, stupid hands. So the only thing I can do is to start over, and do it better next time.
I used to tell myself I did these pictures as practice. And it is practice. I think it helps. I keep thinking this is working towards some end state where I will be able to paint whatever I want. But lately I've decided to be honest. I do it because it's fun to do it. I like the pictures that come out of it. I like the feeling of accomplishment when one goes well, and I don't mind staring very closely at a beautiful woman for hours. It's fun.
In the last part I wrote of this novel thing I'm working on, the heroine is lying in bed, staring at the ceiling, and trying to decide how she can possibly get out of the situation she has got herself and her friends into. I'm thinking this is really me, lying in bed, trying to figure out what's going to happen next. Probably I'll have to take it out or change it. You don't really want to think out loud about where the plot should go in your books, unless you are some sort of acknowledged literary master and can get away with it.
Also: New Illustration magazine arrived last night. I was inspired. But I was also sleepy. Then I was asleep.