Back to beginnings

For a number of years I have played around with color, trying to develop a painting/drawing technique that used color in a way that I was satisfied with. I’ve also tried to develop some technique with ink. With both I’ve had varying levels of success and satisfaction, but have never felt completely happy or at ease with what I had achieved.

Recently, I decided to go back to doing pencil drawings. This was how I started with drawing, when I was young, using a pencil to copy pictures from The Savage Sword of Conan. Now, to go back to that and forget about everything but a pencil felt so liberating. Suddenly a pencil seemed so natural and easy to work with. And the drawings I was doing seemed so satisfying.

Similarly, when I started writing fiction, I began with contemporary general fiction. Eventually I came to realize I wanted to be writing the kinds of stories I fell in love with as a child, fantasy and science fiction stories. When I started down that path it was like a great fire had lit up inside me.

These experiences have reminded me how important it is when developing your creative skill to go back to the basics, and to go back to what you fell in love with. Somehow, that love and enchantment, be it with a pencil, or with words, or with paint, or with a particular subject, is the source of your creativity. Embrace it!