Hello and welcome to my blog! My name is Kimma Smith, and I'm an aspiring artist and writer for children and the young at heart. 

I feel like I'm pretty much starting from the beginning. I have so much practicing to do with my drawing, painting, and writing. I'm taking several online art classes as well as an amazing writing course called "Writing for Children and Teens" by the Institute of Children's Literature. 

I want to share my experiences with my courses, my art and writing practice and process, and a little bit of life in general. I'm gonna be brave and post pics of my sketchbooks so you can see the artistic process, warts and all. ;)

I know that I absolutely love getting to see artist's sketchbooks. It's so inspiring and encouraging to see that they don't make perfect drawings right out of the gate. It takes lots of sketches and figuring things out before you can create the image that is in your mind and one you are happy with. 

I'll be doing lots of copying at first as that is how you learn to improve and hone your craft. It took me literally decades to believe it's okay to copy in order to become a better artist. I don't know where I got it in my head that you were only a true artist if you can draw whatever is in your mind. 

So, not true. When you're starting out, you are going to copy, and you are going to copy a lot! Also, something I learned this year... Even when you are a successful artist and have honed your craft for years, you still often use reference images.

Say, for instance, that you're illustrating "Golidlocks and the Three Bears." You might look up pictures of bears and use them as a reference to draw the bears in the story. You might even need to find a picture of a bear sleeping and stretching and scratching his back on a tree so that you can figure out how to draw your bears in these positions. Cool, huh? 

This knowledge has given me a great sense of relief and freedom. It's okay not to know how to draw All The Things. Thank goodness!! 

Speaking of drawing All The Things, I'm going to get some drawing practice in. 

Lots of love, 

xo ~ Kimma


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