20 February 2008

Interview with Henning Ludvigsen

Originally from Norway, Henning now lives in Greece and is helping to develop the MMORPG Darkfall. In this interview, I ask Henning some questions aspiring artists may wonder about. You can view more of his artwork at HenningLudvigsen.com. Enjoy!

Q. I think a big reason people stop drawing as kids is out of fear of failure and their art not being accepted. Have you ever felt this way and if so, how did you overcome this feeling?

A. I never had this fear, and everyone around me was always very supportive concerning my interest in drawing and painting. I’ve always been the artsy person in my group of friends, and I decided from my early years that I wanted to work with illustration when I grew up. The transition towards art school and the art and design industry simply happened on its own. In some cultures, art isn’t considered a “serious” profession, which I think it very sad as you do see this all around you, all day, every day.

I think that it’s a good thing having the personal skills of always jumping into any tasks with both legs, even if there are tasks you’ve never handled before. I personally think I have this skill, and I don’t really listen to people who find my work unserious.

Q. I grew up as pretty much *the* artist, I didn’t know any other people who liked to draw as much as I did. What advice do you have for people in similar situations and how would you suggest they maintain their creative buzz?

A. I had the very same situation, but then again, I never had any problems with my creativity. I think that looking at your self as something special and different from the others might help. Try to figure out WHY you want to work with art, and do it because of that. Don’t do it for the wrong reasons, or you will finally loose your muse and productivity.

Q. What advice can you give to us artists who are starting out in the creative field? What are some of the best ways to get noticed?

With the modern times, I believe in having a strong online presence for getting noticed and for getting projects and offers. Having a solid portfolio, and always deliver more than what is requested from you when you get the chance of proving yourself. It’s a very competitive profession, and with the internet, you have to make yourself visible by producing quality in a reliable way.

Q. How do you suggest balancing networking and drawing time, as each is important in becoming a successful professional artist?

A. Networking is extremely important for getting your name out there, and also for getting the cool jobs and projects. Both things takes time and none of them should be underestimated, which usually means long days and crunching hours.

Q. Drawing a lot is the only way to get better, but until each of us get our dream jobs, we have to juggle real life, other jobs and art. What is some practical advice for us artists with a busy schedule on how to improve our art?

A. First of all, hope that you have an understanding and supportive partner. Working with art WILL mean long hours and unpredictable projects popping up when you least expect them to do. Painting a lot if of course important to improve, but don’t burn yourself out. If you’re meeting the wall and find yourself in an art slump, either take a break and wait for it to return, or MAKE yourself work though it. Both things works for me.

Remember that even simple 30 minute speed paintings helps you to improve, and I believe that everyone can make time for this once per day no matter how busy they are. It’s all about self education.

Q. What do you find is the best way to market yourself to get noticed and get a job within the creative field? Do you suggest limiting your genre and style or making it expansive enough to permeate multiple genres?

In the beginning I tried to cover as many drawing and painting styles as possible to offer myself as a diverse artist. Throughout the years I kind of found my own genre, and I believe that if you want to become really good at something, you need to limit your style and genre. By time, you will probably narrow down no matter how diverse you’re aiming to be, unconsciously.

If you have any suggestions or tips on the format or would like to be interviewed yourself, just email me or leave a comment!

1 comment:

  1. I admit, I have not been on this webpage in a long time... however it was another joy to see It is such an important topic and ignored by so many, even professionals. I thank you to help making people more aware of possible issues.Great stuff as usual