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Postby Artsy24 » Tue Jul 30, 2019 10:02 pm

  Artsy24
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Jul 30, 2019 9:44 pm

Subject title: Art just makes me crying and anxious

Hello,
I'm a 18 years old young artist who just had his high-school degree. I make a topic here because I have no one to talk...

I love art since I am 10-11. I always loved music and painting, and during high-school I was seriously invested in digital painting/drawing, and during years I thought that I would make it my career. I live in a country where NO ONE knows NOTHING about concept art/illustration/art in general. This is not viewed as a "normal, realistic job". No one among my friends and my family knows this could be a job.

I make this topic because, for 6 months, I realised that art became only a huge source of anxiety. I project myself into the future and I tell to myself that I will never succeed. Finding a job in concept art is based on talent, which is so stressful and uncertain for the future. It stresses me enormously, unlike a "normal" diploma for a "normal" job. I have not drawn anyhing for months, the simple idea of taking a pencil to draw stresses me because I tell myself that I'm going to draw badly and that I have to come quickly to a professionnal level to be able to pay the bills and the rent and all that bullshit later. I do not feel any pleasure in drawing anymore.

Especially when I hear guys like Feng Zhu saying that you have to draw 16 hours a day, that it's ultra competitive etc, now that's what I associate art with, to a filthy and disgusting stress that makes me want to throw up. These are a little hard words but that's how I feel, I base all my personal value as human on my level in art, I feel lousy if I do not have an excellent level in art I tell myself that I am mediocre, that I have nothing to distinguish myself. I feel guilty as soon as I do something other than drawing, when I see again this stress and urgency to draw 15-16 hours a day.
If I'm doing concept art I'll have to leave my homeland, but on the other hand I want to stay on my homeland but there is NOTHING like art industry here. I do not know what I'm going to do later, I'm worried.

I start hating art and other artists, this sort of anxious climate that I MUST draw 16 hours a day that I MUST be competitive that I MUST work overtime in the studio otherwise I will be seen as a lazy.

I often think about suicide, I can not breathe sometimes when I think about it, if you can give me some advice, thanks...

 

Postby arodude » Wed Jul 31, 2019 4:03 pm

  arodude
Posts: 126
Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2017 5:42 am

If the thought of art is causing you that much anxiety then stop thinking about it and take a long break. You shouldn't force yourself to do something that makes you physically uncomfortable. If you're having thoughts of suicide I would highly recommend you seek out a helpline or some other mental health resources in your country.

No one draws 16 hours a day. It's not feasible if you want to have some semblance of a life. And being able to work for hours on art each day is not achieved overnight. That endurance takes practice. Breaks are also important. It also helps immensely if you're in a good mental space. Also it's important to remember that it can take many years to get to a professional level and that everyone learns at a different pace.

The nice thing about now is that you can find jobs to do online but that shouldn't be something you should be worrying about now. It's also totally fine to do a "regular" job to support yourself while working on your art on your free time. I think you should really address your mental wellbeing first.

 

Postby Artsy24 » Wed Jul 31, 2019 6:27 pm

  Artsy24
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Jul 30, 2019 9:44 pm

@arodude

Thank you for the answer. Nothing goes right in my life actually. Art is just a part of the problem. I didn't see any of my friends since 7 months, I have no one to talk and all these thoughts about my future just turns in my head without any escape. In high school I felt safe, now that I have to do my own life and to fight the real world I feel anxious, alone... suicidal thoughts are just this, thoughts, but they come really often.

Art was great when it was just something that I did in my free time, but as a job I feel actually that is just a huge source of stress. Next year I'm going to college (nothing to do with art) but I don't know if I did the right choice, I don't know if the degree will brings me a job that is pleasant for me, I have absolutely NO idea of what I will do in the future.

(sorry for the mistakes english is not my first language...)

For months I feel anxious because of existential thoughts, the fear of loneliness, and all this world in general that scares me and makes me crazy. I don't know if I am officially, scientifically in depression but this is how I feel and I have no help. I already tried to talk to a psychologist but it didn't helped so much...

I know this isn't really the place to talk about this but this is part of the problem I guess...

An another part of the problem is that I love music too (the college next year is quite related to music) and that I don't want to lose it for painting, but I also don't want to lose painting for music. I want to have a great level in the two arts but I feel this will be impossible, too hard, I just don't know what to do...

 

Postby arodude » Wed Jul 31, 2019 11:11 pm

  arodude
Posts: 126
Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2017 5:42 am

I think you're not alone in feeling that way. I'm sure a lot of people your age feel similarly. Does your college have mental health counselors? I don't know about other countries but my college had some that students could go to free of charge. You could also talk to your primary care doctor/general physician about what you're feeling. Sometimes it takes seeing a number of doctors/therapists until you find the one that can help. There are also some self help resources out there in the form of books or online articles that you could explore if you prefer.

I don't think anyone expects you to have everything figured out at this point. Going to college is supposedly how you figure out what to do but even after graduating I know a lot of people who are still unsure where their life is heading. It's okay to take things slowly if it's too overwhelming.

If you want to learn more about music then you should. It might be something you grow to love even more. You'll still have time to take up painting if you want. I think a lot of people here have not gone to art school but continue to do art on the side.

 

Postby Artsy24 » Thu Aug 01, 2019 1:03 am

  Artsy24
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Jul 30, 2019 9:44 pm

Yes I know but these last months have been particularly rough. I feel really alone, I'm quite a shy person so this is hard for me to talk about all of this. Yes I think there is something like a center for psychologic help specially for students, I will probably go to it next year but I think I will feel better when I will just have the opportunity to see 1 or 2 of my friends that I didn't see for a very long time. I will think about seeing other therapists too

Sorry for talking about all these personnal things hahaa but this is really a big part of the problem, loneliness + feeling of depression makes me lose all the pleasure that I had in painting and in pratically everything except eating, I think that I really should begin with little drawings, not too much, just a few, finding again the fun in painting... but this is hard because every time that I start a painting I think about this super long road that I will have to walk through and all of these artists who are at a crazy level, I feel that "urge", that "urgency" to get better faster faster faster... but like you said everyone has to do things in his own pace, I think that's a matter of habits I guess..

For music I think that I did the right choice too, going to this college seems like the best compromise (agreement ? don't know how to say it in english) I'm just stressed because there are a lot of things in the same time that I have to think about. I think the problem is just that I am naturally an anxious person..


Anyway, thank you again for replying me it really means a lot

 

Postby arodude » Thu Aug 01, 2019 11:02 pm

  arodude
Posts: 126
Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2017 5:42 am

I think that's great. You should do what you feel is best for you.

yeah starting small and trying to focus on the fun parts of art is a good place to start. At the same time I don't want you to force yourself. I've found that comparing myself to others is always a source of misery. That feeling of not being good enough never really goes away but you can get better at managing it. It's similar to anxiety...Anxiety doesn't really go away but after learning healthy coping techniques and new thought patterns to replace old unhealthy ones you can better manage it. That itself is also a long journey, one I'm still on too.

Also on the topic of urgency...there are many people who didn't start art until their 30s and 40s but eventually became skilled and have even become professionals. So it's really never too late.

I can relate a little to your feelings, I used to think about death a lot and that my life had little meaning. I dropped out of college just before graduating. I had a lot of the classic symptoms of depression and anxiety but at the time I thought it was presumptuous of me to believe i was ill. Mental illness has a way of warping your perspective. I hadn't seen a doctor in more than a decade and my parents refused help me see one. It wasn't until a friend helped me register for health insurance, went to some professionals and was put on antidepressants that I felt better ( I recognize medication is not for everyone but the option is there.). So I just want to say there is help out there and you deserve to feel better than you do now.

 

Postby Artsy24 » Fri Aug 02, 2019 8:20 am

  Artsy24
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Jul 30, 2019 9:44 pm

Yes I agree with you with anxiety. I thought in the past that there will be one day where this feeling will disappear but it's not, it's always here and I just have to learn how to deal with it. I think that I know what works for me, doing sport and other things like that but until now I was sticked to this obsession with doing 10-15 hours of art, it looked to me like a giant like a huge rock that was constantly crushing me, I know it maybe sounds stupid but I was always feeling guilty about this, not working hard enough etc etc.. and the paradox here is that I was always thinking 24h/24 about art but I was doing NOTHING, like 0 drawing 0 painting, I had this unhealthy perfectionism that was telling me : it's useless to start with a few drawings a day, you have to work(I hate this word applied to art) like a dawn crazy hard worker... but like you said endurance takes practice I just need to START.

" Also on the topic of urgency...there are many people who didn't start art until their 30s and 40s but eventually became skilled and have even become professionals. So it's really never too late. "

Yes I agree with that. I think I'm afraid of the future because I'm very shy, and having to work as a cashier, a waiter or some other job in contact with people if I can not find at the beginning a job that suits me -even in music- , it makes me very uncomfortable. That's why I want to do an artistic job, without much contact with people...

... and it's also very connected with all these thoughts that turns in my head 24/24, about practically everything in life. I think that as humans we are sticked in a schema that tries to give meaning to our existence which, on the cosmic scale, has almost none - that I find very very disturbing, not knowing who or what created us, who created the Universe and especially this irrational fear when I think that in millions of years the Sun will go out and the Earth with, when I think of that in the morning when I see the sun rising I have this irrational stress that grabs me. We are stuck in this pattern of always thinking about LATER, thinking about which college that I will chose, which job, which house, which pension, while never knowing when death can rob me of life, in just a fraction of a second. I find all of these things very disturbing.

This is for example some of the thoughts that always depresses me hahaa I think I just spend too much time THINKING instead of just doing things and stop ruminate about all of these existential things but that's quite hard to be balanced about this...

" I had a lot of the classic symptoms of depression and anxiety but at the time I thought it was presumptuous of me to believe i was ill. "

Yes exactly how I feel now. I think it will be a little better in the next weeks, just talking to a very close friend, doing sport in nature, taking the sun, and if I feel I need a little more help I will go to the center in my college next year. I already feel better with writing all of these things and talking to someone about this, thank you for taking the time to read and reply, means a lot

 

Postby arodude » Sat Aug 03, 2019 9:17 pm

  arodude
Posts: 126
Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2017 5:42 am

Yeah, starting is very hard for me too. Maybe listening to music, or a podcast, or a tv show, youtube, etc while drawing can help you start.

I've also found rumination to be a big problem for me too. I'm impressed how others can move on to new things/new states of minds so quickly but for me I get very stuck on one thing or emotion. My mind doesn't like letting go because it wants to leave no stone unturned but most of what my brain was thinking wasn't really helping me. It instead kept me from doing things. For me when I draw quietly with no distraction I usually want to quit in no time because there is a part of my brain thinking about every awful moment in my life. It took me a while to realize that it wasn't healthy. After drawing outside and drawing while watching tv with no problems I realized that maybe my brain just needs more stimulation while drawing. Maybe it has to do with being introverted, having an overactive brain, I don't know. So I try to work distractions into my life when I know an activity won't stimulate my brain enough. It can take a bit of experimentation to find the best type of thing that helps occupy your brain enough to not ruminate.

It's hard at first but I think practicing some positive self talk when you feel bad, like trying to act like you are talking to a friend instead of yourself might help.

I think doing sports, or other hobbies is good. Having different interests and indulging in them every once in a while can keep other parts of your life fresh.

I'm glad writing things out is helpful for you. I hope things continue to get better for you.

 

Postby Alexander Cvetanov » Mon Aug 05, 2019 8:06 pm

  Alexander Cvetanov
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Jul 26, 2019 2:52 pm

I'm the same as you ,but almost 21. A couple of years ago even though my art sucked i enjoyed the process and was having great fun.Now i feel physically sick when i pick up the pencil.
Now i feel that doing literally anything else would be more rewarding .And the really funny part is that the art school that i go to is pretty good and i don't have any major complains.For me i think the problem is that most art is not related to creating anything that exist in a real life. That"s why i would probably transfer to architecture school next year.

 

Postby fi_le » Mon Aug 05, 2019 9:24 pm

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  fi_le
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This is an interesting thread to me, although I rarely have these problems. Sounds like a very deep issue to me, existential even. Have you all tried reading Seneca or Camus or something? Meditating maybe?

Won't replace a therapist, but it certainly opens up a way of not judging one puts on the page. In case it works it would probably bring a plethora of side benefits as well.
...you see, it's supposed to be fi_le like the file from the computer... the one where you put the data things in.

my sketchbook on here and my Instagram

 

Postby azarga » Tue Aug 06, 2019 9:04 pm

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  azarga
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Location: putinland

I'm 30 now yet can really relate to what u're talking about.
The anxiety was so high that I actually caved in and largely shifted my focus to a "real job" and other responsibilities. I only occasionally do something art related now, and anxiety returns immediately each time.
I still measure my worth by my artistic achievement. You can guess how low it plummeted by now.
Can't wait till kids grow up so I could finally do myself in. :lol:
Please check my stuff here:
My dA, it is pretty bad.

 

Postby Cedric » Tue Aug 06, 2019 10:59 pm

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  Cedric
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Location: Belgium

I believe the anxiety is possibly related to your gut microbiome. I base this assumption upon the fact that more and more research is showing that your mood and gut bacteria are very closely related.
Ocassionaly the Youtube channel "Swatches" talks about this/his issues with mood and depression related to Art and how he fixed it by taking supplements in the form of probiotics and an adjustement in his diet (less sugary). I'm not here to suggest any specific route to take or to swallow pills. But I do recommend looking into diet and gut flora to alleviate your anxiety.

 

Postby Artsy24 » Wed Aug 07, 2019 11:17 am

  Artsy24
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Jul 30, 2019 9:44 pm

Thank you for the answers everyone

@arodude

" For me when I draw quietly with no distraction I usually want to quit in no time because there is a part of my brain thinking about every awful moment in my life. " yes that is exactly the same for me. I realise that I often can't draw without music because my brain is not stimulated enough like you said, or maybe I need to go outside to draw in a library or anything I don't know, but it is very hard to keep my mind quiet while I am doing an intellectual thing like drawing, something that doesn't require physical effort... doing sport help me too.

@alexander cvetanov

" For me i think the problem is that most art is not related to creating anything that exist in a real life. " that's part of the problem. Doing art is so uncertain and hazardous... Good luck with your architecture school next year

@ fi le

Yes this is very related to a lot of existential questions that I asked myself these last months. I always been this naturally anxious person, so the fact that I need to decide right now a certain path for all my life, even if college is not definitive and that you can always figure out your life after your degree, it's quite stressful, I want to be sure to do the right choice. I love reading philosophy and I'm still doing it, it helps me a lot but I still don't feel really sure about my future but I guess this is normal like, I know that all this stress is "normal" because every student is stressed after high-school for doing the right choice, but there are so much things that make me anxious in this fucking bad world. I mean, how can you be happy when you know that some persons wins in a day the same amount of money that certain workers in an entire lifetime ? I took this just like an example hahaa but there are SO many things that can makes you anxious and sad and always that stress but I think too much about all of these existential problems I guess, I just need to learn to keep my mind quiet.

@Cedric

Yes I agree with you about microbiome and diet, I think the same, the mood I am in is always related in a big way with my body and how my body is, these last months I was stucked in unhealthy habits like eating pizzas chips cookies and everything because I was feeling like it's the only thing that brings me some kind of joy in a day, but these last days I changed a lot of things about these habits and it's already a little better. There are again a lot of things to change in my health habits but I feel I am in a good way. I will check your youtube channel to see if some things interest me


thanks again for taking the time to answer everyone and sorry for the eventual writing mistakes

 

Postby Alexander Cvetanov » Wed Aug 07, 2019 8:56 pm

  Alexander Cvetanov
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Jul 26, 2019 2:52 pm

I have a few questions for you.
1.Can you see yourself doing anything beside art?
2.You said that you are afraid of becoming an artist , because the field is competitive.But this is the case for like the most majority of the jobs .Do you have what is needed to do art for 6-8 hours a day?Can you get to this level?If not is there a thing that is marketable and you could do for that amount of time?
3.Can you see yourself doing the same thing or close to it for years?
From what you've written it sounds like you enjoy drawing ,but are just too afraid to commit , because of anxiety for job stability mostly. I think if this is the reason you shouldn't worry at all , i personally know a lot of artist that are not the best out there ,but still are doing fine.At current time most jobs ,with a few exceptions are not really stable, so it's not very different.
For me the case was basically "I would rather create/ invent x than just draw it ",but you have to find for yourself.

 

Postby Artsy24 » Wed Aug 07, 2019 9:37 pm

  Artsy24
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Jul 30, 2019 9:44 pm

@Alexander Cvetanov

1) Honestly, there is nothing that interests me more than art. These last months I thought about being a therapist, I really love reading psychology books and all that stuff but art is still in the first place in my mind.

2) Yeah everything is just about this, competition and money. I am afraid because I don't know if I will ever have a stable position by doing art. And everything is so CONFUSED. I love painting AND music, I want to do both, but isn't it too much work ? To draw a LOT for having a professionnal level as a painter (concept artist or anything) and doing also music in my free time ? I don't know what exactly I want to do in art, illustration ? Concept art ? Freelance or working in a studio ? Colorscript, storyboard ? Painting for books ? And WHERE ? In my country there is 0 art industry, like, really zero. I am afraid of going in a country where I don't speak my first language. And WHEN will I reach this "professionnal level" ? This really stresses me too because I don't want to be professionnal when I will be 30 or anything, I want to do art in an early point of my life, but art is not like regular, normal studies where you have your degree after X number of years and that you can officially start your career. + I am going to a college that is not at all related to drawing, so I will have to paint in my free time, entirely self-taught.

3) "doing the same thing" like working on the same studio, the same project ? or just doing art ? If it's art in general I think I will be great, I am an artist since 10-11, then I don't know what I exactly want to do like I said in 1) but I guess that in art I will be working on quite a lot of different projects...

" I think if this is the reason you shouldn't worry at all , i personally know a lot of artist that are not the best out there ,but still are doing fine." I hope that it will be the same for me...
" At current time most jobs ,with a few exceptions are not really stable, so it's not very different. " yes I guess this is for every job... and that's really why I am so anxious, when I was in high-school I was not stressed a lot because everything was straight-forward, clear, I just had to have my degree and that's all.

But as an adult I will be a slave to the money all my life and THAT is really something that I found hard to accept.

I know that a lot of things here will just be done with time (I just need time to know what I will exactly do in art and I shouldn't be worrying too much about all of these things right now) but these are thoughts that were in my head since several months, feels good to speak about it... I think I have just a big problem with uncertainty in life in general, but I just need to deal with it, the entire Universe is just full of chaos, life can not be predicted...

 

Postby Alexander Cvetanov » Wed Aug 07, 2019 10:28 pm

  Alexander Cvetanov
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Jul 26, 2019 2:52 pm

Artsy24 wrote:@Alexander Cvetanov

1) Honestly, there is nothing that interests me more than art. These last months I thought about being a therapist, I really love reading psychology books and all that stuff but art is still in the first place in my mind.

2) Yeah everything is just about this, competition and money. I am afraid because I don't know if I will ever have a stable position by doing art. And everything is so CONFUSED. I love painting AND music, I want to do both, but isn't it too much work ? To draw a LOT for having a professionnal level as a painter (concept artist or anything) and doing also music in my free time ? I don't know what exactly I want to do in art, illustration ? Concept art ? Freelance or working in a studio ? Colorscript, storyboard ? Painting for books ? And WHERE ? In my country there is 0 art industry, like, really zero. I am afraid of going in a country where I don't speak my first language. And WHEN will I reach this "professionnal level" ? This really stresses me too because I don't want to be professionnal when I will be 30 or anything, I want to do art in an early point of my life, but art is not like regular, normal studies where you have your degree after X number of years and that you can officially start your career. + I am going to a college that is not at all related to drawing, so I will have to paint in my free time, entirely self-taught.

3) "doing the same thing" like working on the same studio, the same project ? or just doing art ? If it's art in general I think I will be great, I am an artist since 10-11, then I don't know what I exactly want to do like I said in 1) but I guess that in art I will be working on quite a lot of different projects...

" I think if this is the reason you shouldn't worry at all , i personally know a lot of artist that are not the best out there ,but still are doing fine." I hope that it will be the same for me...
" At current time most jobs ,with a few exceptions are not really stable, so it's not very different. " yes I guess this is for every job... and that's really why I am so anxious, when I was in high-school I was not stressed a lot because everything was straight-forward, clear, I just had to have my degree and that's all.

But as an adult I will be a slave to the money all my life and THAT is really something that I found hard to accept.
'

I'm from an eastern european shithole. Here the job market is extremely limited.There are a couple of gaming studios ,most of them are just branches of big shitty studios , like Ubisoft , Gameloft and so on.Because they are practically a foreign company they pay much much better than the average here,even though the people who work there mostly just make minor assets or port games for different consoles. The other people who work as artist do freelance or work from distance and make like 5-10 times the average wage .They are living the good life mostly.(at least the people with above average skill).
Also i want to mention something else that is really important.You have limited time on earth.Doing a million things ,because you want some type of backup plan is going to create the classical case of being ok in many fields, but master of none.
Also you are REALLY overthinking the "if" parts.You are just 18 and at that age you just don't have a very good understanding of the world around you ( neither do i ,mind you).Creating hypothetical situations that might or might not happen based on your life experience is just plain waste of energy and mental stability.

When finished HS(19) i went to study engineering design (a great subject) in extremely shitty uni,so i dropped after 1 semester.After that i spend almost a year doing nothing of substance (with the exception of preparing for art school) then i went to art school and realized that i don't care about creating art myself.So now i'm considering switching to architecture next year or even going for a pure science degree.Because of my insecurity i've wasted 2(3 if i decide to switch again next year) and a lot of money.

 

Postby Artsy24 » Wed Aug 07, 2019 11:51 pm

  Artsy24
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Jul 30, 2019 9:44 pm

Also i want to mention something else that is really important.You have limited time on earth.Doing a million things ,because you want some type of backup plan is going to create the classical case of being ok in many fields, but master of none.


I know, but the thing is that I don't do music to have a backup plan, I am really passionated about it and that's part of my anxiety because like you said I have limited time and it will be really hard to do music AND painting. But I don't see myself giving up one for the other

Also you are REALLY overthinking the "if" parts.You are just 18 and at that age you just don't have a very good understanding of the world around you ( neither do i ,mind you).Creating hypothetical situations that might or might not happen based on your life experience is just plain waste of energy and mental stability.


Yes I know... I just have to learn to not be always overthinking.


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