A day in the life of an Illustrator #2

How do I start my day and where do I work?

Starting my day
This is a personal post again. I said I wanted to tell you about all the aspects of being an illusrtrator. Since I just started I'm confronted with problems I didn't expect. I thought I really had everything in control, but be realistic, you are never completely in control.
And that is one of the fun things of being an artist in this field. You are not just going to your everyday job and do what you should do and when it is 5 o'clock you go home and sit on your couch while smelling your own farts. Everyday is a surprise and you are building on your own way of working.
Be sure to get enough sleep!
When I started I wanted to work like a normal production factory since I worked that way for a long time. Wake up early and work until you are done following a strict schedule. But that seemed to bring stress and it appeared to block my creativity and productivity.
Waking up early is not a problem, but I noticed I am more aware of what I am doing in the evening. So yeah I am one of those artists who are awake when everyone is asleep. And sorry everyone, I am one of the reasons 'normal' people think that artists are lazy. I have to admit I wake up about 8 o'clock these days and then I start having my breakfast, taking a dump, get my smoking pipe ready and stuff like that.
Don't smoke children. When you are old enough you can start destroying your life.
BUT I still work hard to finish everything I should do. The first thing I do (while smoking my pipe) is looking for potential new projects/clients. Sending emails and making calls and stuff like that is always important. And don't send just one email. Send two or three every day and keep this in your administration. You need to know who you send a mail and when.
And why do you need to send your portfolio to more than just one potential client? Most people wouldn't even take the effort to send you a e-mail back. I think this is one of the most annoying things in this age because everyone has become one with their mobile phones and receiving emails and messages around the clock. And I may complain about this because I make sure I am answering a message/email within 24 hours.
But don't think nobody saw your mail. There are people who just putted in their archive until you are needed as an artist because they don't have anything for you at the moment.  Still I think they could send you something like 'Sorry, I don't have the time to respond with the attention you deserve so I will send you a proper reply later this week' or whatever. Then you know they received your portfolio.
When I am done with all this and need to pay any bills or do some other small things around the house I fix all of this. I learned I should not have things like this on my mind so I can focus on my drawings.
So take your time and make sure you get enough rest that makes you more productive.

Where do I work?
After all of this I start to work on my drawings while I am enjoying a lot of tea. I make sure I am comfortable at my working space. That is why I don't drink any coffee anymore, it makes me feel nervous so tea is actually really nice to work with. Oh, but make sure you don't put your cleaning water or terpentine next to your tea or whatever. I don't keep my tea close to me when I am working with paint or ink because I am way to afraid to grab the wrong glass.

my messy working table.

As you can see I am a pretty messy person. But I like it to a certain level. There are a lot of drawings and pictures around the exact place where I work so things are all getting mixed up all the time. And always things are getting combined and mixed up while I am taking a step back from my drawings. I make sure I am always surrounded with the things I love and inspire me. Sadly my sweet lady is not always around because she is great to have close too. Always good to speak out your mind. When you hear your own thoughts things will fall in place or someone else comes up with idea's you wouldn't think about in the first place and therefore completely ignored.
Besides that, you probably know I collect a shitload of books and other stuff. Everything should be a inspiration in my house. That is why my apartment looks a bit like a wunderkammer.

Tips and tricks
So my conclusion of this post is a bit like Don't act like a factory or a office job. You run a creative business. You need to make your deadlines but no one is telling you when or how you make the things you do. This makes you feel comfortable and in charge of the things you are drawing. But plan your time when you know you are less productive on the creative part. Do things you don't like or the things that take less creativity in the morning like I do or maybe when you feel too tired to make art but are sharp enough to send emails or do your bank business.
And be comfortable where you work. You work at home. Why should you create a place you dislike in your own home?! This time work is not a place of punishment it is a place where you can do what you really love. I make a mess and like to collect a lot of stuff but maybe you don't. Feel free to adjust your natural habitat the way you want it to be. I know artists who are extremely clean at their place and I envy it in a way but then again, I like all the inspiration around me and not just on the internet.

Hope you liked this and next week I will write something about the materials I use to make my drawings and why.

Kind regards,



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