Happily going over some notes I made while listening to the speakers at the conference… and want to share. Didn’t make every speaker of course, but I’ll try to hit the ideas and quotes that spoke to me and I hope will speak to you! Highlights….
I’ll start with the most WONDERFUL opening talk from artist SHAUN TAN. at 8:35 Friday morning of the Artist Intensive. What a way to wake up….truly the ‘WAY TUGEAU!” It was about “Developing a Personal Style.” His overall point was that your personal style needs to be free and encouraged to just ’emerge.’ He talked about how drawing and painting at a very young gave him his ‘source of power,’ and how it was wonderful to work and not worry about how it was ‘received.’ He reminded all that ART is a distortion of reality…it’s NOT literal but more theatrical and manipulated. How you do this grows into your style. It’s often good to let the viewer SEE this manipulation…be aware of the painting. The Deep Style that is or will become you is not so much how you draw or paint, but how you THINK. That approach will change as the story and image changes, and your personal style can be ‘found’ at the intersection of where all the work meets. (love that!)
You don’t choose a personality for yourself or a style really. They evolve and happen from the interests of the day-to-day realities. One way to teach yourself to know and appreciate others styles however is the age-old practice of copying master artists to LEARN from the effort…HOW and WHY it was done a certain way. He likes to divide work into two parts…the ‘public’, known part, and the ‘private’ exploring, developing part. Good to “think of yourself as a train station that ideas pass through.” (!) Allow the dream to ‘bubble up’. The deep style just comes… it’s a conversation with yourself. “Swing with the current.” Style often turns out to be “what you do in an emergency” which he quoted from someone else…and isn’t that a truth!
Well that’s a touch of one talk I just HAD to share…wonderful. Check out Shaun Tan’s work up…interesting talent and personality.
More tomorrow from others there at the WINTER SCBWI CONFERENCE 2013!