One or many at a time?

  • When I am doing a polished illustration like for 3rd thursday I have to finish it before moving on, because I would just never return to it. If I let it sit around for some time I start to hate the drawing and feel like there is no point in finishing it. And it is really frustrating and hard to force myself to finish it.

    But this is so personal, that I dont see anything wrong with your approach.

  • SVS OG

    I tend to finish one illustration before moving on to the next one. If I leave an illustration before finishing it, the chances of me going back to the illustration is pretty low.

    However, in the future I plan to change my work process to allow for multiple pieces to be worked on at the same time. I think it would allow me to take on a workload that is more akin to the workload of a professional illustrator. And if I were to do a series of illustrations for the same project, it would probably help to keep a sense of unity running through all the images.

  • I've learned to use procrastination as a tool for productivity. I always try to have one project i don't want to do even more than the one that needs to be done. that way i can put off doing the one while still being productive with the other. so yes, irresponsible, but multiple projects at once works for me.

  • yeah I have to finish one illustration before I proceed to the next. I only put it aside if I really got frustrated and about to pull my hair out like a girl fight right outside my high school.

  • ok you've convinced me to stop flitting from one thing to another, at least until I'm finished the current work! ^^
    thanks for your answers!

  • @audrey-dowling No way is the right way - I guess it is just different people's brains. I'd go insane and probably end up like the Joker if I did it your way, but if it works for you, then it's definitely the right way for you.


  • well I can't say it really works because I have enough not finishing things or when they take too long...
    I think I will try to find a balance between the 2 ways

  • I like to work on several things at once because it allows me to "step away" from an illustration for a time (several days usually). That way, when I come back I'm able to see it with fresh eyes. Helps catch issues.

  • I always have several things on the go at the same time. Coming back to a painting or drawing a few days later allows me to take a fresh view of that work in progress. It also keeps me from overworking my work. Sadly I still manage to do that : ).

  • hi Audrey, For me it works best if I finish up before starting another, however, my mind keeps telling me new stories or images to illustrate, witch bothers me a lot, because I need to finish stuff. I also like to draw different styles what makes it even harder. At this moment I work on three books, and have four other illustrating assignments. My head is cracking up, but then I wake up thinking that I can start another project, silly huh? This week is closing time for the regulair assignments and December I finish up the first book, so I hope that christmas time is giving me some peace. So, now my advice to you, ehh to me is don't start up a new one before you have finished another unless you really have to. XD

  • Same here but I am getting better. One tip I have in order to complete a image is have it part of a project.

  • I have the same working style, though I wish I could just sit and finish one all at once. When I'm working on others' projects I have to have something going on for myself that inspires me, but sometimes that's how to get really good work!

  • SVS OG

    For me, it's kinda both. I usually only have one image that I am actively taking through to finish, but before finishing I have other ideas being worked through in my sketchbook so hopefully I have something new ready to go when I finish whatever it is I'm working on. So basically I do multiple ideas at once, but usually only one that is past the sketching stage.

  • You're a creative person, so do what comes naturally and makes you feel good! Many fine artist work on several pieces at a time, not only to give their work time to dry between layers (depending on the media of course!), but to go back to it later with an objective eye. Luckily digital artists don't have that problem! I don't believe there's a right or wrong way. I think also that the more art you make, the easier it is to envision where you're going and what the final outcome will be. To see a professional 'in action', watch Will Terry's newest video, and you can actually understand his thinking progress as he works! It's another great video by him! I looked up your work and I think it's charming. Really nice characters! Have you put your paintings up on Etsy?

  • When an illustration is not working out the way I had envisioned, I save it for a later date and move on to the next. And in case I have abandoned it too early, at a very rough stage (sketching or rough forms), I create an extra layer in Photoshop and add a few bullet points describing what I was trying to achieve. So if too much time passes between archiving it and opening the file again, the notes will remind me of what my goals were at the time.

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