Well, one of you might be an old blog reader. Aladyx is a friend of mine from DeviantART.com who told me about RedBubble and gave me the link with a link to one of her watercolor pieces. I like this community. I love the way the front page shows artworks, lots of art jumping right out at me.
I’ve been active and busy lately. Being a fantasy writer, I never miss “http://www.nanowrimo.org” and the only year I didn’t win it was 2002, when I was too sick and didn’t get started till the 25th. This year I’m about halfway done with my newest novel, Snowflake Obsidian, a fantasy with an equine hero based on a Lipizzan stallion but enchanted, he’s actually become a wizard now and I can’t wait to see how his quest comes out.
A month ago, in October, on “http://robertsloan2.livejournal.com” where I usually blog, I started doing a drawing a day for a group called ArtSoMoFo. This led to so many interesting experiments and new directions that I kept it up right into November. I started experimenting with ACEOs around that time or a little earlier, doing colored pencil realism in a size category where I could finish it in a day or so instead of hanging onto it for weeks and years puttering and burnishing and finishing it with the same level of detail on a large piece. I’ve been having fun with it.
Then last week I started auctioning on eBay, with the username robertsloan2art — and that’s distracting. I’ve gotten no bids yet, but plenty of reassurance that no one bids till the last day and maybe the last hours when it rolls up onto the front page. They’re getting some views, that’s something that makes me happy. I got all set up over there, joined an ACEO group, made some new friends and have been getting focused on selling my art again.
I live on Social Security, but I’m starting a business — my writing and art, working at getting self supporting again so that when I do get a big novel sale or commission it doesn’t get taken out of my check. For years I worked as a street artist in New Orleans, but the physical toll it took on my bad leg and back eventually forced me to retire and after that life got hard for almost a decade. I wound up in homeless shelters and after that banged around staying with friends till my daughter got a house and kids and a new husband, so now I’m living in a good place and have finally gotten past surgery and other health problems to where I think I can build up again to being able to support myself. I know I want to. While the check is in some ways an easy ride, it gets frustrating and it just rubs me wrong that I get penalized for earning.
I’ve got one book in print. Raven Dance is available at Amazon, search on title or on Robert A. Sloan author name, it’s a big fat science fiction epic with a black and red cover. I’ve sold a couple of pro stories for big money and am now also getting into doing how to draw articles at “http://www.ehow.com” where you can search on my username robertsloan2 or just skim the Art > Drawing category till you start seeing my name — a lot of my articles make it to the front page on popularity. They vary, but I’m slowly building up a complete drawing course there.
I also started working on Street Sketching I: Portraits in 2004, got interrupted by health trouble and life crises but have been steadily rewriting it. I teach art in person and have always been able to get a beginner from zero to selling realistic portraits within six months to a year on meeting with them monthly in a group or one on one. So I had to relearn how to write completely! No plot, no characters, no zingy dialogue and no setting? How do I make a book interesting when it has none of the things that make a novel fun? But it’s coming along now, and the eHow articles have really been giving me a better feel for it. The technique is using pastels or colored Conte crayons on tinted art paper.
So there’s an introduction! My self portrait is reasonably accurate in my icon. I’d have used my daughter’s photo, the one I used for a reference, but I thought it’d be cool to use art for an icon. I’ll be posting some art soon… watch for it.