Today’s card actually took a bit of time spread over two days. It’s the first card I’ve re-done, and it’s a re-do of the first card I did.
As you can see, the exercise has trained my eye and hand much more effectively than even I thought it would: twelve cards done and I’m already much better than I thought I’d be.
The Magician is like that. Getting really familiar with his standard tool kit, he grows in skill and capability until he is hardly recognizable. It’s the process you’re going to go through as an artist, too. The more you practice, the better you’ll get. It’s impossible to know this about yourself when you start out, of course — except in a weird and abstract way — but practice really does bring massive improvement in the very short term. You’ll hit plateaus of course, but that’s normal. Like the magician, you’ll have to learn relaxation as well as tension, force as well as finesse, technique as well as passion. That’s been the message all along, though. Hasn’t it?