One of the greatest thrills that I have is when I learn something, or re-discover a skill I have not used in a while. Whilst at a job interview, I noticed that one of the reviewers of my portfolio said to me “you seem really good at pencil and pen, but you don’t seem as comfortable with digital work”. What she said was partially true, but not entirely. I tried to explain some of my work (especially what was commented on) was made on extreme deadline. I had to finish a fair portion of my work in a few hours. My work, by necessity could bot be as detailed as my private work, in which I have the luxury of being more detailed. Also, different jobs require different levels of detail for visual impact. Some work should not be detailed for what it was meant for. All of what I said was true, however, the comment rankled me a bit inside. Partially because it was true in the sense that some of my skills had been ignored because of the necessities of my former employment. Now I know I can do things better, and I know I have the skills, or can learn said skill rapidly. But knowing is only half the battle. Proving it is the other half.
One of the good things about having as long a career in print production as I have, as well as being through almost 20 years of computer graphics growth is that I have learned a lot of things. Bits here, and bits there. And then off to another project, and sometimes months or longer pass without using a particular skill. However, the kernel is still in my brain, and is resident, if somewhat submerged. T hat is one of the reasons I can quickly learn graphics skills. I’ve messed around with them. For instance, enter gradient meshes in Adobe Illustrator. I hadn’t used the tool in a while, and then “aha!) I remembered.
I have just begun my new, creative art, but my learning curve and my digital art is growing in skill pretty quickly already . As and instance, someone asked me how I made flames in photoshop. I kind of forgot. Then I looked at a quick reference, or start screwing around, and I remembered! I sometimes think I’ve learned and forgot more that some people have learned. My art, when I finally have time to develop it, thus grows really fast. I’m uncovering a lot, instead of learning a new skill. And even if I learn a new skill, usually it is like something else I have messed with or designed before. I am fortunate in that regard.
What I need to do (and am doing), is make the new pieces of my portfolio look more outstanding and dynamic. With the tools I am re-discovering, I think this should be little problem.