The Artist and Consistency of Vision
If there one thing that gets drummed more and more into my head as my artistic life goes on ( and especially these days) is that, consistency and determination are foremost allies in the life of an artist.
Creating an animated show for a network raises you status a bit, and puts a bit of money in the bank for a short time ( unless you are Steve Hillenburg or Seth Mcfarland, then it’s a little longer and larger). But for the most part, any project you work on that is owned by someone else is ephemeral. The plug is pulled at any time. Your life as an artist goes on.
What I find again and again, from independent webtoons done by my friend Arin Hanson at Egoraptor, to indie online comics or hard copy comic books, strips , music, blogs, photography, jewelry art and design..etc…
Is that putting out product consistently and diligently, wins the people over the long run.
Dedication to your craft. Dedication to a schedule of output. Also dedication to quality, but not to the extent it keeps you from ever finishing something or putting it out there consistently.
Hazel Dooney , a fine artist in Australia , consistently has put out new paintings on her website that are snatched up by collectors, some even before she finishes. It wasn’t always like that. And that’s what artists, animators, filmmakers need to remember, the beginning is the true test. Can you get over that hurdle where money and support seem to be invisible? Can you believe in what you are doing to follow it through? To put aside brand name , ego building but ephemeral jobs to focus on something that you could very well keep doing until you die.
I can’t keep doing Rocko’s. I can’t keep doing Camp Lazlos. Not to take anything away from those experiences.
And I know it’s a bit ironic for this post to come on the heels of posts about Kaboing coming to a stand still. But course correction and soul searching is good too.
It’s been said that if an artist can build a tribe of “1000 true fans” ( in Arin’s case its more like 470,000, with 87 million views) an artist can find their niche, their place. Arin didn’t start out that way. But over time, his audience found him.
Consistency and dedication. The ability to be frugal and find your legs in those tough early times. Build on something that can keep going if you want. You can stop if you want.