Author Archives: Nathan E. Lilly

The Fear List

Since 1993 I’ve been keeping a fear list. A list of quotes, sayings, and proverbs about fear. Here’s what I have so far: A life lived in fear is a life half lived. —Spanish proverb, from Strictly Ballroom A ship is safe in harbor, but that is not what ships are for. —Rear Admiral Grace […]

2018 goals: midpoint

This is the halfway mark. Not much has changed in my initial goals, but I still feel like I’m making decent progress. Additional things have popped up that I’ve had to address, above and beyond my personal goals, so in one sense that may be slowing me down, but in another I’m pretty pleased with […]

How to get better at drawing

Just start drawing. Don’t stop drawing. Just start drawing This, in theory, is the easy part. It’s especially easy for children. Older, less naive, people find that they make excuses when they should be drawing. Whole careers have been wasted simply through the inability of someone to start something. Pure procrastination. Fear of failure. Waiting […]

The Best Art Instruction Manuals: Creative Theory

Over the past two years I’ve been working through a series of books on Art, from histories to theory to manuals. I’ve decided to share some of the best works that I’ve come across. This page, A Very Artistic Library, will be an up-to-date list of recommendations for people who want to learn more about […]

Drawing on Escher on Drawing

If you’re ever feeling that you’re not good enough, remember that no artist thinks that they’re good enough. Here’s a quote from M.C. Escher, one of the finest draftsman you could encounter. “Good God, I wish I’d learn to draw a little better! How much effort and persistence costs to try to do it well. […]

Hot bacon grease dressing

4 ounces of bacon, diced 1 small onion, minced (optional) ½ cup mild vinegar 1 tablespoon Sugar 1 teaspoon salt Pinch of mustard Dice the bacon, this will serve as bacon bits after it has been fried. Mince the onion. Fry bacon to a light brown; remove the bacon bits and into the hot grease […]

The Best Art Instruction Manuals: Painting

Over the past two years I’ve been working through a series of books on Art, from histories to theory to manuals. I’ve decided to share some of the best works that I’ve come across. I’ll be adding all of these, and future works, to my Very Artistic Library page. It will be an up-to-date list […]

How am I going to pay for this?

My daughter is earning her college degree. Which is a peculiar phrase because really she’s paying for the degree. Which is another peculiar phrase because most young adults fresh out of high school don’t have $80,000 or more to pay for a four-year degree. So I guess the actual phrase is more like she’s promising […]

The Best Art Instruction Manuals: Drawing

Over the past two years I’ve been working through a series of books on Art, from histories to theory to manuals. I’ve decided to share some of the best works that I’ve come across. I’ll be adding all of these, and future works, to my Very Artistic Library page. It will be an up-to-date list […]

Being Bad

I don’t think I’m getting my thoughts out properly. It feels like there’s a gap between what I want to say (portray, write, etc.) and what I actually say. I’m clumsily groping for the words to express what I’m trying to say. The solution: allow yourself to do things badly. Make 1000 bad drawings Paint […]