Filling Up Your Creative Tank


About half a year ago, I bit the bullet, and bought an iPad Pro. I had already dabbled a little on my old iPad 2 using Procreate, but it just didn’t feel right. I didn’t like the idea of drawing on a piece of glass, and the styluses that I tried were kind of stubby and clunky. So I did some projects that I enjoyed doing (like little animations), but I never considered my iPad as one of my go-to mediums to use for my creative habit.

Then something shifted. During the production of People Drawing People, I watched Danny and France sitting shoulder to shoulder on set, both with their iPads on their laps. While waiting for the crew to get ready for the next shot, they were showing each other tricks in Procreate. Tricks they learned by doing.

Both of them have gotten used to drawing on the iPad, it’s like second nature. And more important: it brings them so much joy. Danny also let me use his iPad to do a drawing, and although I had tried it before on that exact same iPad a couple of years ago, this time I felt excited. I understood the potential, the way an iPad can be another weapon of mass creation. Suddenly, I didn’t mind drawing on a glass surface instead of paper. I didn’t mind that there was no juicy ink being soaked up by the paper.

I realized that it’s another way of making art. Like painting with oils is something completely different than drawing with a fountain pen. Just another tool and medium. With endless possibilities.

One of the things that I noticed is that using the iPad for art has influenced the way I look around me. I suddenly notice nice textures or patterns, and color combinations—all things that I can use for my iPad art! Changing up our tools changes our perspective! Isn’t that exciting?

I am so glad that Danny put the iPad kourse together. I will be taking this kourse as a student, along with all the other students. I am looking forward to the many a-ha moments I will have. Because I sorta find my way around in Procreate now, but I also know that I am just using a small percentage of what is possible.

I am looking forward to changing from being an iPad dabbler to a confident iPad artist. Not so much because I want my art to be better. Of course I do, but that’s not why I feel so excited. It is so important to keep learning. To discover new things, discover new ways of making art, to feel inspired. We should always stay curious— that way we stay creative and we grow as artists.

Just the other day, my dad, who is in his seventies, told me how he is taking classes in Photoshop. He was a professional photographer before he retired and used Photoshop for his work. He says he thought he knew a lot about Photoshop, until he started to dive deeper—and he is learning daily. Just because he is curious, and he loves it. He says it’s his version of doing crossword puzzles. That’s what I mean. You can dabble or you can dive in fully, as long as you feel challenged so you can grow and feel just a little more confident with every effort you put in it.

As I am writing this, it is raining cats and dogs here in Amsterdam. Everybody’s back in town after vacations, kids are back in school. The days aren’t endlessly long anymore like they were in summer, and we have months ahead of dark evenings inside. Can’t wait to spend those with my iPad in my lap!

I am going back to Skool!

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