Your Own Artistic Traditions (And Some Ideas If You Don’t Have Any)

2014 Artwork Artistic Traditions Sketch

Well, it’s the 17th of April today and this means that it’s exactly two years since I decided to make at least one piece of art every day.

Since then, I’ve produced a ridiculous amount of art and all of this daily practice has really helped me to develop too. Seriously, there is nothing like a regular practice schedule to accelerate your art skills.

Anyway, as a kind of tradition – every year, I redraw or re-paint the first picture I made after I made this decision:

This picture is from exactly two years ago. Stay tuned for the new version tonight.

This picture is from exactly two years ago. Stay tuned for the new version tonight.

So, apart from talking about how important it is practice, why am I mentioning this?

I’m mentioning it because it’s a good example of an artistic tradition. The fact is that making art is often a rather solitary activity (as it should be) and, as such, you are often the only person who can motivate yourself to keep practising and keep making art.

Finding or creating your own artistic traditions can help you do this. They can help to remind you of how far you’ve come since you first picked up a pen, pencil and/or paintbrush.

They can help you feel a sense of purpose to what you are doing. They can help you to remember that you are an artist. They can be a part of your artistic “personality” and style. Then can remind you to keep practising.

Your own artistic traditions may seem strange to other people or they might not even be noticed by other people, but – for you as an artist – they can be a valuable way to feel better about what you are doing. It’s certainly worth creating at least one tradition.

As long as it has some level of personal significance to you, then having at least one artistic tradition can really work wonders for you. But, if you’re not sure of what your tradition or traditions should be, here are a few ideas:

-Re-draw or re-paint the same picture on a particular day every year.

-Have a song or an album which you always listen to whenever you are drawing and/or painting.

-Have a recurring character who appears once in every few drawings and/or paintings you make (I used to have one of these, but he hasn’t appeared for a while).

– Draw or paint a piece of fan art or copy an old painting once every month.

– Draw or paint a self-portrait every few months.

-Keep track of when you draw or paint every picture you make and, once in a while, take a look at what you made three months ago or a year ago.

I’m sure that you can probably think of some better ideas, even if you don’t have any artistic traditions of your own at the moment.

Remember, your artistic traditions should feel like they are significant to you – if they don’t, then you’re just wasting your time.


Sorry for such a short article, but I hope that it was interesting 🙂

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