For a while back in the 90's I worked in Tokyo, and got to take my daily commute on the Yamanote Line. In no time at all I was rabidly addicted to the phone-book sized weekly manga that they sell at the train stations, especially Afternoon.
Embedded in the print industry as I was, and constantly surrounded by the art and story of brilliant works like Aa, Megamisama, it took no time at all for me to realize that I wanted to express myself through drawing too.
So, I set out to learn how to draw, focusing mainly on pinup art and copying the drawing styles (and, often, even the drawings) of my favorite artists. Over time I slowly developed my own style, and started drawing my own original art. However, I could only go so far by myself.
During 1999 I reached a plateau with my pin-up drawings and struggled to find a way to move beyond it, reaching for every possible solution except classes - for some reason I just couldn't bring myself to take a class.
I know now that I should have gone to MCAD and signed up for some live drawing classes, but at the time I was clueless (not that I'm any better now).
I studied the histories of my favorite artists, and noticed that many of them had reached a similar plateau early in their careers, their pinup art reaching a similar plateau at just about the time they started drawing their first manga, then as their manga progressed so did their ability to draw virtually anything.
So, I created UberCyberCats in the hope that it would help me learn how to draw.
It also taught me to go to MCAD and sign up for live drawing classes.
Since then, I feel like I've found my "voice" with a pencil. Although I still feel like a hack and am utterly convinced that every single thing I draw is embarassing, pointless, and crap, through the brilliant help of some incredibly generous and patient artists I have learned that continuing to draw despite perpetual self doubt is just a part of the process.
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