What I've Learned So Far
Practice doesn't make perfect but it definitely helps. Some of you might be thinking that's a typo but it's not. Being self-taught the only way that I have gotten okay at doing nail art is by practicing, however things I've practiced a lot don't always come out perfect. I might do something very well one time and fail horribly at it the next time I try it. By practicing frequently you minimize the amount of failures that you have. So if you try something once or twice and it doesn't workout don't get discouraged, even the best nail artists out there have had mishaps and are better at some techniques more so than others.
Not all nail products are created equal and a high price tag doesn't mean best quality (for you). So, often I have fallen in love with a nail product or a brand and raved about it to friends or family, just to have them tell me how horrible it was when they tried it. Just like many other cosmetics nail polishes have different ingredients that react differently with different body chemistries. This might mean that a polish will last a week on you before chipping while when your sister wears the same exact polish and it chips in a couple of days.
You might wonder than why bloggers both with swatches and reviews. One, because it gives us something to blog about but mostly to give you our point of view. I'm personally very fond of China Glaze, Color Club, and Zoya. They all seem to work very well for me, so if you've tried these products and have similarly pleasing results my reviews will most likely be spot on for you. If you don't have similar body chemistry but have similar skin tone the swatches will be most helpful. Either way swatches and reviews help give you an idea of what might work well and how the colors may look when applied before you go and spend a great deal of money on products that may not be what you thought they were.
Routine nail care and maintenance are more important than the nail art itself. Let's face it, anyone can be an awesome artist with enough practice but if your canvas is broken and busted up its going to distract from your masterpiece. Too often have I seen really nice nail art surrounded by dry, cracked, and messy cuticles. I too have been a culprit in posting pictures like this but I have learned to be better about regular maintenance so that these occurances are fewer and fewer. It has quickly become my first and foremost pet peeve when view nail art and I cringe at former pats of mine that were subject to these atrocities.
Nail art communities are the best. Throughout this last year I have become acquainted with a few nail art communities and individual nail arts across various social media platforms. I have received nothing but encouragement, motivation, and inspiration from each and everyone. Though I know some that have dealt with negativity on some platforms I have yet to experience any negativity first hand. I have been lucky to see only the better side of people and I hope this trend continues.
I'm not one to toot my own horn but I feel I made a few notable accomplishments that I would like to mention.
I finally figured out a fair nail care routine that keeps my hands descent. I've also learned to be less abusive to my nails as well. I used to use my nails like tools, ending up with broken nails frequently along with torn cuticles and occasionally open wounds.
I've gotten pretty good wielding nail art tools and polish brushes with my non-dominant hand. It is very rare that I do a nail art design on only one hand. I try to do both hands whenever possible because I like to practice with my non-dominant hand and I often wear the nail art I create for a day or two.
I finally figured out a pretty good lighting system and method for taking pictures. When I first started out I had so many issues with lighting. My pictures often came out too dark or had too much sun which washed out colors. Though I still have occasionally problems I think I have things mostly worked out with my photography set up.
I managed to blog for an entire year. I had no idea how long I was going to stick with the blog and my husband gave me three months before I gave up. Not only did I stick with it, I've come to enjoy it as well as become a bit dependent on creating nail art and writing posts.
Goals for 2015
I hope to create more nail art, using unusual and unique mediums. As well as practice methods that I am still having troubles with such as watermarble (curse you watermarble nail art designs *fist shakes*).
Explore the indie polish realm more. I currently own one indie brand of polish (though I have one more on order, keep an eye out for swatches and review). As much as I enjoy mainstream polish brands I would really like to support independent businesses more.
I would like to get to know my audience better. I would like to have more open discussions, take requests, do mani swaps (if you or anyone you know maybe interested, please contact me via e-mail), and project collaborations with other artists.
To give you an idea how I've progressed over the last year I've decided to recreate the first nail art I've ever posted. I decided to use the same colors I did a year ago so that it is a more accurate comparison.
I'm really proud of the improvement I've made both in my nail art and photography skills. It just goes to show you that with enough determination and practice almost anyone can create nice nail art.
Those of you how have been keeping track of this blog for awhile, I thank you for sticking with me and showing me continuous support. Those of you that just recently discovered this blog, I welcome you and hope you'll start or continue to follow my blog. I have a lot planned for this year and I'm hoping to accomplish a great deal.
If you would like to follow me blog you can do so by clicking the 'Join this Site' icon on the top right hand side of the screen or through Google+ and/or Bloglovin. I also post to Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest. Once, again thank you so much for your support, and thank you for stopping by, see you next time.
Your Fellow Plebe,