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Dear Artists of Starmen.Net - by PoeTrader

Dear Artists of Starmen.Net

Starmen.Net has an immensely creative fan community that's always attracting new talent. We've got music buffs, creative writers, video-makers, and genius hackers. But what Starmen.Net is probably best known for, in terms of creativity, is the visual art community. The collection of fan artists here is huge and it always seems to be growing.

Over the past decade, I've watched some of the artists on this site hone their skills and use them to get into prestigious art schools, have their work featured on a poster or t-shirt, or even start a fun career for themselves. Heck, Fangamer was born from Starmen.Net's art community, and it continues to support artists all over the internet. Starmen.Net's love for art and the people who create it is a special feature that I've not seen in any other fan community. This site really does feel like a delicious melting pot of talented people.

On the flipside of these successes, I've also seen the opposite - budding artists who come here eager to participate in the fun, and then promptly beat themselves down when they see that their work isn't up to par with another artist (or group of artists) they admire. It's the artist's curse - you are your own worst critic. I've fallen into this self-imposed trap many times myself, as has every artist who's ever lived, even the one you admire the most.

If you consider yourself an artist, one of the most destructive things you can do is compare your work to someone else's. Of course the person who's been drawing for 10 years will have more skills than someone who just started last week. Of course the person who's been through art school will have a better grasp of perspective than someone who doodles just for fun. On a fan site where people's ages range from 13 – 30+, there's just as wide a range of artistic skills floating around.

I used to be the Fan Art staffer here, and one of the best parts of the job was watching individual artists improve over time. That's the key to being a successful and happy artist: self-improvement. Instead of comparing your work to others, compare it to your previous works. Over time, you'll see that what you drew today is a lot better than what you drew a year ago.

The next time you draw something that you're not completely satisfied with, tell yourself: you can only get better. This drawing may suck a little, and that's okay! The next one will be better. And the one after that will be even better. Just keep drawing, because if you stop now, you'll also stop improving. If you want to get better, draw something! Practice, practice, practice. Every drawing won't be a winner, but it will be valuable experience.

Artists of Starmen.Net – I want you to do me a favor. The next time you post your artwork on the Fan Forum or anywhere else, please don't immediately shoot yourself down by saying how much it sucks or point out all the tiny little mistakes you made. Post your art with confidence. A lot of hard work went into your drawing, so be proud of it! You're expressing your love for your favorite game, and that's nothing to be ashamed of.

I'll leave you with something to chew on: people rarely notice your tiny little mistakes until you actually point them out – then they can't be unseen. Next time, note your mistakes, but keep them to yourself and use that knowledge to improve on your next drawing. And if somebody offers constructive criticism, don't take it personally – accept it graciously and use that knowledge to improve on your next drawing.

So get out there and draw. And most importantly – have fun!


Other Submissions by PoeTrader

Author Sort Ascending Sort Descending Title Sort Ascending Sort Descending Description Sort Ascending Sort Descending Date Sort Ascending Sort Descending Rank Sort Ascending Sort Descending
PoeTrader "Earthbound" in Animal Crossing
If you ever see a shooting star in Animal Crossing: Wild World, press the A button and you will clap your hands together and make a wish. The next day, you will receive a letter and a gift from Wishy the Star. My first letter is show above. When I saw who it was addressed to, I immediately thought, "How do they know I like EarthBound?!" Haha, and then I came back to reality. ;)
2/8/06 0.00
PoeTrader A Different Halloween
A poem written from Lucas's perspective. Chapter 1 spoilers!
10/9/07 0.00
PoeTrader A Ghostly Visitor
The Ghost of Starman. In my world, ALL ghosts carry lanterns. :B

Acrylics and glitter.
8/15/07 10.00
PoeTrader A Tale of Two Seeds
A story about how the sesame seeds met and what drove them apart.
6/24/12 0.00
PoeTrader Annoying Old Party Duck
Annoying Old Party Duck was thrown out of Brick Road's Christmas party for spiking the eggnog and getting fresh with a Worthless Protoplasm.
12/16/07 9.00

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