Welcome to Dots And Ink Pots!
Hello there! Welcome!
This marks my first ever blog post! Eek! The nerves!
I thought that I should start off my business blogging with a little bit about me.
So, hi (again), I'm Elle.
I'm a self-taught dotwork artist taking my first tentative steps into the world of creative small business. My passion for art began when I was a child, with my grandma sitting me down at her kitchen table and teaching me the basics of charcoal drawing. From there, she would teach me sketching and watercolours. I studied art up until Year 9 and then decided not to pursue it at GCSE or A-level. I always thought that the art subjects taught in school were too embellished for me. I loved art but I knew I would hate being told what to draw and who to study. I guess that's why it never appealed to me. I was much happier exploring different mediums and subjects myself, eventually discovering which style suited me through trial and error.
I've always had a hard time choosing between science and art as a career choice. Art stokes the fire inside my head and heart but science is more likely to pay the bills. As I approached the time to apply to university, I tried frantically to find a subject I was interested in. This ranged from History to Forensic Science and from Illustration to Production Design. I decided to try and take a year out to gather some kind of art portfolio together which is pretty hard when you've not studied the subject academically!
It was during this time that I tried to show myself exploring different mediums and techniques in my sketchbooks, when I eventually discovered dotwork. I had Youtubed various "Sketchbook Flip Through" videos in order to try and work out what kind of thing I should be doing and what universities wanted to see. After using the technique to create various pieces inside my sketchbook, I then decided to try it out whilst creating a portrait of our family dog, Sade. I loved the result and process so much and I found the whole thing very therapeutic and the rest as they say is history.
Dotwork for me now is something I can't imagine being without. I spend 90% of my time doing it (which is probably a bit unhealthy, oops) but I don't enjoy anything nearly as much! Once I'd started to do more dotwork and really practice the technique, I began to see a vast development in my progress and finally felt like I had discovered my niche. It was during this time that I did a couple of animal portraits for friends and family and I actually started to show people my artwork. Showing my work to others is always a bit daunting and I never really liked it. What if they think it's rubbish?! Surprisingly enough, people mostly seem to love it! Most often they seem to just be fascinated with the detail of it all and the insane amount of dots. (It really is ridiculous!)
I have to say, if it was not for the ridiculously lovely comments and support from my friends and family, I don't think I would have ever had the courage to start my art specific Instagram page, let alone my own small business!! I mean, it has always been one of my dreams to be able to sell my art but I always thought the only way I could do that was to have gone to university and got a degree.
A couple of years ago, I started to follow a bunch of small biz owners and creative people on Instagram and try and live vicariously through them, because that could never have been me. Instead I gradually saw through these people that you could create a viable business out of your artwork and designs but you just need to either have something unique or do what you do very well. Oh and work your arse off. (!!) These people being Rachel from ONRshop, Claire from ClaireAbelleMakes, Nikki from Nikki McWilliams and Kat Molesworth. I am constantly fuelled by their creativity and seeing all their hard work, marketing, studios and designs, it made me believe that I too am capable of doing the same. They are all a fantastic source of motivation for me. Seeing them get to work and have their designs come into fruition, only spurs me on to do the same.
*Gushy session over haha*
So here I am, tentatively trying to make my first steps into the creative small business world! This blog will be a chance for me to document my small business journey, share more from behind the scenes and more about my life, my art and my process. There will probably be a lot more than that, as I am bit of an oversharer! (As you can probably tell by the length of this post!) OH well, you know nothing about me, so here I am, giving you the lowdown. (do kids still say that?!)
I hope you'll follow my journey and enjoy the content I make. It will undoubtedly be a steep learning curve but I am super excited to start this adventure and to learn as much as I can about business, design and all the fun marketing. (I'm already planning Halloween and Christmas themed shoots and materials! Eeek!!)
See you soon!