Happy new year 2023 !…

This changing of year, is always a great time to reflect on how things are going, and planning for the year ahead. How was your year 2022?

Mine was great, compared to others, like in Ukraine, who are living in war time since February 2022….  I moved to a smaller house, which was a big event for me. I’m still figuring out where to put all my stuff. Allthough I got rid of too much stuff, I still feel like I have too much stuff I don’t really need. A consumption society disease I try to get cured of… I published 4 online classes on Skillshare and I have 3 new book projects!

I’m especially happy about the 3 new book projects, because they give me a lot of energy!

At each new year I ask myself the same question: what do I want to do before I die?  Suppose you die next week: what do you want to do this week? In other words: what’s REALLY important to you? Who’s REALLY important to you and who do you really want to spend your PRECIOUS finite time with?

How can we make the difference and make this world a better place? Like Toni Morrison wrote: “This is precisely the time when artists go to work. There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity, no need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language. That is how civilizations heal. I know the world is bruised and bleeding, and though it is important not to ignore its pain, it is also critical to refuse to succumb to its malevolence. Like failure, chaos contains information that can lead to knowledge — even wisdom. Like art.”

Scientific research has shown that what makes us really happy is:

  • spending time with loved ones
  • help other people, doing volunteering work
  • get in a flow
  • concentrate on the content of an activity and not on the reward
  • exercise gratitude

Also, to be able to maintain good resolutions one has to create essential small daily rituals to remind us of what makes us happy.

I’m taking on again a very important big resolution (I can’t help it): I want to make one drawing a day, because that’s the only way to get better at it: practice, practice, practice! 

I get to hear so often: “but you’re so talented and drawing and painting! I don’t have your TALENT” So I write it again and again: it’s not about talent! it’s about SKILLS you can learn by PRACTICE! Like learning how to write and play music you have to practice to learn how to draw and paint! It’s a muscle I train every week! (I don’t watch TV. I draw!…. The average person watches about 141 hours of TV per month or 1,692 hours per year. Assuming you reach the average U.S. life expectancy of 78, that’s about 15 years of your life. Imagine drawing and painting all that time instead of watching TV? That person would become Michelangelo…)

Replace criticism with curiosity so you’ll have more joy = you’ll practice more = you’ll progress more quickly . Practice is really the only way to progress. you can watch all online classes of the world, if you don’t practice, you won’t make any progress….

Another trick to take away resistance is making small thumbnails. Don’t have any time to draw & paint? making a small thumbnail of 4cm x 4cm only takes about 15 minutes…! 🙂 Making a thumbnail is less scary than making a big painting!

Happy new year & Happy sketching !

Much love to all of you and thank you so much for subscribing to my website! Don’t hesitate to tell me what are your creative struggles so I can make video’s to hopefully help you make better progress!

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