Have you ever had the opportunity to follow an artist from the start of a project through every step until they reveal the finished project? It's an amazing thing, like watching time elapsed video of a miracle unfolding. Then pop, the picture sits there in all it's breathtaking color, and it's all the more amazing because you first saw it as a sketchy drawing with no real form, just the skeleton of a drawing really. You even got to see the "ugly" phases where the drawing looked like it might never fulfill it's promise, but it did. And it's gorgeous.
I have, and you can, too. Check this link out to The Wonderful Obsessions where artist and writer Jonene Ficklin documented the journey of a gorgeous Tahitian drawing from first pencil scratches to fabulous finished project. And you can win a copy of the drawing. Yup, an 8x10 piece of tropical paradise. Jonene is an amazing artist, writer, and friend of mine. She is also my art teacher and a brave, brave woman to take me on. And she's brilliant.
Watching her work doesn't just amaze me, it gives me hope. Not only in my own fledgling art projects but for my books, too. It reminds me that every masterpiece starts as bare bones and evolves through hard work, ever-expanding skill, and persistence into beauty itself. She shows me it takes a lot of pencil (or key strokes) to turn blank paper into art.
Check out Jonene's blog and see the first pencil sketch to the finished project. And for all the steps in between just check out the Art Lessons tab at the top of her blog. Your eyes are in for a treat.