Skip to main content

Need time for life and art projects? What this artist does.


In this clip from the art podcast, fantasy illustrator Neal Tse talks about using a Kanban method to manage his time between life and art projects. You can check out the full episode hereNeal Tse: Fantasy Illustrator - Tom Ray's Art Podcast

What are some of the things that you're in the process of doing artistically these days?

I always have a huge backlog of project ideas so just coming out of project management mindset I use MeisterTask which is a kanban board setup. That's where you have your backlog and then you have currently working on, and then complete. 

So you take the task and kind of move it across those different columns. It's a way to stay focused. 

Any time I have a random idea for a project I'll throw it in the backlog and after each project, I kind of reassess what my priorities are going to be. Constantly reprioritizing that stack just based on what the current needs are like if it's a client commission the deadline is coming up or I really want to have this ready for a convention so this piece needs to go into the queue. 

It's kind of blending my digital marketing worlds with my illustration worlds. I love picking the best of both things. 

Is it difficult to give priority to personal projects when you do have actual work projects?

It's different in every single case, like the best way to handle it is like I said after every project or maybe once a week look at that stack and make sure you're on track. 

So if you know that you're gonna get a piece done in a week and there's gonna be some extra time then you can slot in a personal project before your next major thing. 

Do pare it down into actual tasks inside of the project? Like, draw the thumbnail sketch for this drawing, instead of the whole drawing itself. How much do you break down? 

I do break it down a little bit. There are certain steps that group well together so, doing your ideation and thumbnails and like rough compositions can be one phase. Then working into your color comps then color roughs. Then settling on the final composition can be another phase.

In digital, you'll do a lot of base layer painting I always try to work back to front so, paint the background paint the objects in it, paint the figures, paint the clothes, and then digital effects would be last. Like a beam of light or a certain glow or something and then I'll do kind of final color tweaks in photoshop. 

So certain things, if it's going to print I'll do a scene with CMYK preview of it and it'll show me like what colors are out of gamut so I need to adjust for those. That's the final stage and then I have the final file composition that's ready to hand off to a client or post on my site.


Listen To The Podcast

Popular

Can I Buy And Resell Copies Of My Own Book From Amazon KDP?

There are two questions that I get asked about publishing my webcomic books on Amazon KDP . 1 - Can I Order A Print Copy Of My Own Book From Amazon KDP? When I started printing on Amazon KDP I also had that question. The reason I put the books together is I was just kind of doing it for myself. I could make a paperback version of my webcomic books and then I and my family could get a copy. It didn't even occur to me that I could actually start selling the book in public.  I thought it was just print-on-demand and then maybe I could order one.  But when I print a book on Amazon KDP I can also get up to 999 copies and sell it on my own!  I was able to get my own copies from Amazon KDP sent to me.  As the author, I can get them at printing cost . So they're at a discounted price. The option to order author copies is right in the KDP publishing setup.  The button is next to the book in KDP. 👇 The other question I get about publishing my book on Amazon KDP... 2 - Can I Sell My A

How I use one Gmail address for multiple Soundcloud accounts

Do you know the Gmail "+" trick to use one email for multiple accounts on one service? Here's a little trick I use that works for any service.  I talked about this on the podcast episode I did with artist Mortimur K . In this case, let's say I used up all the uploads I have for my free Soundcloud account . With this trick, I can open a new free account and use the same Gmail address. I don't want to create another Gmail account to sign up again.  Using my one Gmail address for multiple accounts on the same service I don't remember when I learned this but you can alter the name on a Gmail address. Like, let's say mine is "tom@gmail.com". To be clear that is not my email. I wish it was, but this is just a short example. Start with the original Gmail address Add a "+" after the email name Where it says "tom" on the address I can put a "+" after that. Add a "+" after the email name After that "+" I ca

New car key.

I told them I didn't think the key was the problem when I took it to get serviced. Read all my comics as eBooks 📚 Click here to read on Amazon!

Artwork for the original Candy Land game by Milton Bradley from 1955.

I have a vintage Candy Land game from 1955 by Milton Bradley and I was about to sell it so I thought I would add it to my personal art history course concept I've been doing . I'm going to try and see if I can find out how this game was created, designed and why? Here is what I found out about this game https://candy-land.fandom.com/wiki/Candy_Land_Wiki Candy Land is a board game about children exploring a world made out of candy and other sweets that originally came out in 1949. In every version of the game, there are a group of children that go through Candy Land. In the earliest versions of the game, it was a realistically drawn boy and girl. Drawing of the Candy Land kids I did on my phone ☝ https://board-games-galore.fandom.com/wiki/Candy_Land The game was designed in 1948 by Eleanor Abbott , while she was recovering from polio in San Diego, California. It's rumored that Eleanor also did the original artwork but I didn't find anything that