Aidan asleep awake
Artwork and story from Cindy Kelly
I started selling acrylic paintings in high school. These were works I created using photographs; many from National Geographic magazine. At that point, I was mostly self-taught. My father encouraged me to go to college and was excited when I was accepted into the School of Visual Arts in New York. However, he passed away before he would see me off to my first semester there. Unfortunately, I couldn’t afford to continue studying in New York and ended up going to a state school I could afford. This was a big disappointment but I graduated in 1988 with a degree in printmaking from Mason Gross School of Art, Rutgers University. I settled on printmaking because I loved the idea of art being available to more people at an affordable price through limited editions. However, I always lamented that I was never really taught ‘how’ to draw or paint. We were just given assignments to complete and while I didn’t realize it at the time, courses were a mishmash of mediums with no foundation in developing more basic skills.
I worked for a while in graphic design so I could support myself. I think I always felt unprepared for commercial art because I didn’t study it formally. So I decided to go back to a school called the Portfolio Center in Atlanta, GA. There I fell in love with editorial illustration. However, that dream got sidetracked by the reality of making a living and paying student debt.
When I got married art took a backseat to raising and homeschooling my children. A decision I never regretted.
Now, I am wondering if I can reawaken the joy I found in making art again. I feel challenged by my age (60), but I think, too, that my confidence is lacking. I discovered the Drawing Academy while looking to improve my drawing skills that lay dormant the last twenty years.
I have started the online anatomy course. It is sequential and detailed and I can work at my own pace. What I like about the Drawing Academy is that it is based on the masters like Da Vinci. There skills were learned from life and observation.
I want to learn about proportion of the human figure and how to use those skills to draw more from imagination. I want to learn how to use my drawing skills and how to begin painting with oils, which are so much richer than acrylic paint.
I think the Drawing Academy will allow me to get feedback on my work and learn those foundational skills that I missed.
I want to win the Drawing Academy Course because I couldn’t afford it any other way. People should vote for me because I am an example of life sidetracking a dream but that it is never too late. That is a message of hope for anyone who wants to challenge themself to do something they always wanted to do.