What exactly constitutes an artist’s voice? Well, it is a number of intangibles working together. And how exactly do you find your voice, or style as it is often described?
In my opinion, it takes several years of consistently painting to find your voice. You have to put in the time and discipline it takes for your work to truly blossom. It is often about failure, self-discovery, and making mistakes. An art school cannot teach their students about finding their voice.
It must come from within.
To make it as a professional artist, your work must have unity, character, cohesion, and consistency. Your entire body of work should look similar. It has to be distinctive, or else you are going to look like everyone else. Think about it–how many people can point out a Picasso or a Monet? Most people can, and it is because their style is instantly recognizable. Sure, they had tons of copiers and followers, but they managed to eke out a unique voice from how they viewed the world and themselves.
My point is, all of this takes time. It is not something you are born with. Your voice is something that needs to be developed.
Here are 3 older paintings from back when I was painting in a realistic style with brushes.
My older work may have shared the same theme, seascapes, but they fail to share the same unity. They look like they were created by 3 different artists altogether. One almost has a Albert Bierstadt-esque feel to it, while one sort of looks like a Bob Ross (top left). The one at the bottom looks a little more polished but different nonetheless. These 3 seem to lack the shared elements that constitutes a singular body of work.
Let’s take a look at my new work.
These 3 paintings are clearly done by the same artist. They all share similar feelings, warmth, tone, and expression. This is all part of branding. Whether we are talking about my starfish logo, the textured mounds of paint, or my bold, lively colors—these works of art come together in perfect harmony.
And they all represent how I view the beach and the sea!
I hope you have a better understanding of the ambiguous term “voice.” And I am confident that through experimentation and practice you will discover your own amazing voice! Something that sets you apart from the rest of the world. That is what I wish for you.
Don’t forget to check out my new Youtube video if you haven’t yet given it a gander. If you are enjoying these, hit “like” and subscribe for future speed painting videos.
Hope all of you have a wonderful weekend!
And until next time, let’s bring some color into the world.