The AMA is great - there's lots of good advice in there to start, but it ultimately led me to his blog and finally to this post called Stop Whining, Start Working. (It's on a similar subject as my earlier post about Letting the Learning Get in the Way.) I'll repeat his text here, as I felt like it was speaking straight to me:
I hear it all the time:
Am I talented enough? How much should I draw? Am I studying right? What’s the best way to use XYZ book? Art school or no art school? Do I need a degree? How will I know when I’m professional? What should I draw? Should I do more studies or finished work? What are the best materials? What kind of paint should I use? What pencil should I use? Are pencils or pens better to draw with? Should I draw big or small? Is it bad to draw from photos? Should I paint digitally or traditionally? Am I too old to start learning? Is Photoshop or Painter better? What’s the best way to hold a pencil? Where should I find inspiration? What do I do if I’m not inspired? How do I get through “artist’s block”? How long will it take to be a professional? Why does it feel like I’m not improving? Should I get a Moleskine? Is art dead? What is art? How do I do backgrounds? What are the best tutorials? What resolution should I work at? How do I come up with good ideas? What do I do if I stop enjoying art?
Well, I have the answer to all of your questions: it doesn’t matter. Really. It doesn’t. These questions are excuses, plain and simple. They are used by people who aren’t drawing or painting that want to get wrapped up in petty minutiae at the expense of their own work.
The fact is that if you want to make art, then you need to make art. I could answer every single question on this list and it wouldn’t make you the slightest bit better at drawing.
Now, I should qualify these statements before people start chucking rocks: these are mostly valid questions, with equally valid answers. They’re worth discussing at times, and are things that you’ll eventually figure out. But by and large, you’ll figure them all out for yourself by working. Notice a pattern here? Don’t be afraid to ask questions and research things, but be sure you’re not doing it at the expense of actually learning things.
So shut up, stop whining, and get to work.
Thanks Noah. And now I'm going to get off the internet and do some drawing. :)