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Fueling Your Creative Fire: 5 Resources for Creatives
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One of the earliest lessons I learned in the creative field was to seek out as much help as I could. Whether it was tutorials1 or resources or mentors, I’ve always tried to find someone doing things better than me.2
So, I figured what better way to fill a helpful role to you today than to share 10 things; some are things I’ve learned, things I’ve found, and things that you may need in the future. Regardless of where these ‘things’ fall on that spectrum, I hope you find them helpful and you pass them along to someone else (maybe even share the post with people who could use it too!).
1. Video Copilot
As I briefly mentioned in the footer that you probably didn’t read yet, my early years as a video editor were spent scrummaging through the vast depository of tutorials at Video Copilot. The titular copilot was Andrew Kramer, dishing on all of the incredibly things you could pull out of Adobe After Effects if you thought hard enough.
I may no longer be a full-time video editor, but the skillset developed with these tutorials and plug-ins from Video Copilot were vital to my growth as a creative. If you are in that space, you may already know all about Andrew Kramer’s visual fx work, but if you are taking your first great steps into the video world, this may be useful for you to learn a new skill.
2. Graphic Design & Art Tutorials
Because I didn’t major in design during my time in college, I’m a sucker for graphic design tutorials to fill in all of the many gaps in my knowledge-base. I would recommend it for anyone though, regardless degree-requisite. Some of my drawing styles have come directly from seeing other creators show their process for digital illustration, whether it’s on an iPad using Procreate or on a computer using Affinity Designer, Adobe Illustrator, or Photoshop.
Learning from a wide variety of creators and in different styles as allowed me to be platform agnostic so that I can utilize any piece of digital hardware to make artwork.
3. Tut Vid
Nathaniel Dodson has a way of communicating that’s both slick and informative with every tutorial he produces over at Tut Vid. His tutorials range across different creative practices (video, illustration, design, layout, animation) and the full gambit of adobe products. His tutorials range from advanced to very helpful beginner tutorials (like the one below).
4. Take Notes!
Whether it’s taking down the particulars, ‘ruining’3 the margins with your ideas, or just plain doodling, there is power in taking pen to pad to get something down. Our brains may be super computers, but they can’t hold an infinite amount of information before they get bogged down. I have no scientific research or basis for this idea, but I can speak from experience that the more gets loaded into my memory banks, the more likely there will be a critical data leak… and usually at the most inopportune time.4
Grab a pen and a pad of paper that you can carry around with you. Pick stuff that is convenient for you and things you won’t forget easily. That can be a challenge, but you can do it. Trust me. Start writing things down. Take notes in meetings on paper. Bring the notes to computer later. Doubled info is remembered info.
Drawing is crazy fun too. Draw a doodle that reflects the important info you need to remember, and it just clicks.
5. Creative Pep Talk
Andy J Pizza’s podcast, Creative Pep Talk, has been the perfect pit stop for me. Whether you are a writer, artist, filmmaker, musician, animator, craftsman, or just generally looking for some creative pep in your step, his podcast is an amazing resource.
Andy is constantly interviewing interesting folks from different art concentrations. The variety is saucy, but also dependable. It’s a great place to start if you are finding yourself in a creative lull.
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I basically jumpstarted my video production gig thanks to Video Copilot tutorials. Thanks, Andrew Kramer.
And that is an infinite list.
I’m still mad at my 8th grade math teacher for docking me points for drawing in the margins of my math homework
and it usually culminates in my wife rolling her eyes at me.