A Quick Dive into My Life - About Me

Hi, I'm Luuk Minkman. I'm a 23-year-old artist from the Netherlands. I draw realistic cars with alcohol-based markers and colored pencils (and sometimes I use oil paint). 

I started this blog in April 2022 but didn't post anything until August.

My Car Drawing Journey

I was never really interested in cars. Why would you even need a fast car?

But all that changed when I started playing a game called Real Racing 3.

Suddenly I started learning bout cars and recognizing them irl.

And with that came to urge to draw cars instead of construction vehicles.

I started designing my own car and, well, they all sucked and the proportions were waaaay off.

The first time I started to use a reference photo for the lighting my whole perception of cars changed. I never realized cars had reflections.

This made me very interested in drawing cars photorealistically and I started watching timelapse videos of people drawing cars on YouTube.

In those videos, the artists were drawing with something unknown to me and it took me a long time to figure out that they were using alcohol-based markers.

After I had found that out I bought a set of Winsor & Newton Promarkers and Immediately drew a car with them.

And to no one's surprise, I sucked at drawing with alcohol markers.

I started learning everything there is to know about it and I experimented a ton. This resulted in a pretty good second attempt at using alcohol-based markers.

And so my car drawing journey began.

After I had made a few drawings, a friend of mine at the time said "I can't like anything if you don't post it on Instagram." 

So I did.

To my surprise, people started following me when I posted that drawing and a lot of people liked my post. 

So naturally I kept posting my drawings. 

Not long after I got my first commission from someone who found my IG page. I was very inexperienced so I made that drawing for way too little... But the drawing turned out pretty well for how much experience I had at drawing.

After about 2 years of drawing cars with alcohol-based markers, I felt like I couldn't get my drawings to look more realistic. I decided to make a switch to colored pencils and I bought a set of Faber-Castell Polychromos pencils.

Using these colored pencils made my drawings look a lot better, but I needed to learn a lot about how to use them.

After a short while of combining alcohol markers and colored pencils and made the switch to only using colored pencils in my drawings.

But after some time, I started to develop a love-hate relationship with colored pencils. Most of the time they work great, but sometimes they do everything in their power to make your drawing look as grainy as possible.

After pondering how to fix this I decided to go back to using alcohol marker as a base and using colored pencils to add details and to smoothen everything out. This worked really well and I made some of my best drawings during this period.

I become really good at drawing cars photo-realistically, however making one drawing takes soooo much time. I needed a break from these very detailed drawings.

This was also the time I started writing tutorials on how to draw certain cars. For those tutorials I couldn't make the drawings too complicated so I simplified the drawing process a lot.

The drawings are still pretty realistic, but not like my marker + colored pencil drawings were. They also take waaaay less time, only about 6 hours instead of 60.

Why Did I Start This Blog?

For the longest time, I've dreamed about making money myself and not working for anyone else ever. So I needed a way to earn a living.

The most logical thing would be to sell my art as I'm an artist. 

However, this seemed too out of reach, and from what I learned by watching a ton of videos and reading a few books about business is that you can more easily scale your income when the work you do and what makes you money isn't linearly tight to the time you spend on it.

There are only so many drawings I can make in a year. So I needed to find something else. 

I know, I know, there are lots of people who earn a decent income creating art, but it didn't feel right, and honesty, doing commission kind of sucks.

During this time in my life, I came across a video by Kirsty Partridge. In the video, she listed multiple ways you can earn money by creating art and she clustered all ideas into 3 main topics: selling art, teaching art, and entertainment.

I thought teaching would be my best bet. But filming YouTube videos and being on camera was not something I was good at all. 

I did try though. You can watch them here, but I'd appreciate it if you wouldn't...

If teaching something using videos wasn't for me, then how else can I teach people stuff?

During this period a friend from high school started her own blog. She is a really good writer and her articles are very well written and easy to read. 

I was never a great writer. I hated writing essays in school.

But having a blog seemed fun, but how do you even make money with it?

This was when a YouTube video popped up on my recommended feed: How To Start a Blog | How I Make Over $75,000 A Month Blogging.

People are out here earning tons of money with their blog?!?!

This video pulled me right into the world of blogging and I decided to start my own blog.

I Almost Made This Blog About Web Development

When deciding what to write about I came up with 3 options: photography, drawing, and web development. But I didn't know which one to choose.

I would've loved to have a blog about photography, but I don't know anything about it apart from that I'm not that good at it. So this option quickly dropped.

Next up is drawing. Drawing is such a grey area, like, how do you even explain how to draw something??? It seemed so difficult to explain "drawing" so I also dropped that option from the list.

So it had to be the last option on the list: web development. I know quite a bit about it from coding and designing my own websites so this would be a great topic to write about.

So web development it was.

I started building this blog, but writing about web dev started to not feel right anymore. However, I kept building the website as the base would be the same for all three topics.

After a while, I came to the conclusion that webdev was definitely not the right choice, so I redesigned my blog to be about drawing which felt a lot more right

Fun fact, the folder of my website is still called webdev_site.

University is Not for Me

I graduated high school in 2018.

I had no idea what to do with my life. The only thing I knew was that I didn't want to be tight to a job for the rest of my life.

What do you even study to accomplish that? 

The only thing they teach you at uni or college is how to become the perfect employee. I don't want to the the perfect employee. I don't want to work for anyone else.

I didn't know what to do, so I started studying Automotive at TU/E. It would probably be a fun course to follow if I didn't need to travel 3 hours a day and if it wasn't full-time.

I quit after 4 months or so.

I still hadn't figured out what to do with my life so I fell again into the trap society put up. 

I started studying Industrial Design for no particular reason other than people expected me to study and I didn't know what else to do. 

It was fun but it also sucked a lot and that wasn't solely because of Covid. I'm really bad at studying for something I don't care about. It's still a wonder to me that I could pass so many exams without properly studying for them.

After the first year, I wasn't doing too well mentally, but I kept going. What else could I do?

Slowly I started to figure out I wanted to start a blog to make money with. 

I started coding my website in my free time (and at school when class was boring). 

At this point, I really wanted to work on my blog and grow it. However, uni had different plans. 

Doing all the work it took to pass my classes and having these mental battles deciding what to do drained so much energy I couldn't do anything. 

We also were supposed to go on a full-time internship for 6 months. 

Why does uni have to be a full-time commitment? Do other people just not have a life outside of school or am I just different than most people?

I had to choose. Uni or my blog.

This was probably the hardest decision I've ever made. I knew very well what the best option was, but I didn't want to disappoint my parents, so I took a long break from school which didn't seem as definitive as quitting.

A few months later I decided to fully commit to my blog and quit uni.

University is not for me.

Pursuing my Dreams

After quitting uni twice, I finally knew what I wanted to do with my life. At least for the upcoming few years.

Now it's time to fully commit to pursuing and accomplishing my dreams. But what are my dreams exactly?

1. I don't ever want to work for anyone else.

2. I want to become a millionaire before 30.

3. I want to own a Ferrari 812 Superfast and a Porsche 911.

4. I want to be able to work from anywhere.

My blog is the first path that will take me closer to achieving my dreams. It's going to be a lot of work, but I have to make it and I'm going to make it.

Now it's time to work, work, and work. And I feel like I'm on the right path.