Introduce Yourself Here!

I am a retired airline employee after 42 years, parent of a fabulous 34 year old son, wife of the true “southern gentleman” and advocate for improving my artistic ability (?). Originally, my favorite medium was watercolor and oil, but I have been experimenting with colored pencils and love the results.
This appears to be a very active, helpful site and I am looking forward to learning from you all.


Hi Everyone,

My name is Becky and I‘m from the Boston area. I just joined a few weeks ago. I have been drawing on and off in graphite for the past year and decided to join the VI to help expand my skills beyond adult ed courses, and to try out colored pencil. Matt was wicked nice to critique a drawing I submitted last week! Looking forward to engaging in feedback/critique with all of you.


Hello Everyone, I am a Newbie at all of this. I am just trying things to get started. Essentially having a look around to see what is what. My name is Darlene Gillet but my friends call me Duckie. I learned to draw late in life, and I am trying to it in the best way I know how. I have tried everything from drawing, charcoals, graphites, pastels, watercolours, etc. I would like to think that the world is my oyster. If you have any words of wisdom I would greatly appreciate it.


Hello! My name is Gwen Prettyman. I have loved to draw with graphite since I was a child, but have never taken any formal art class. I began following The Virtual Instructor about 2 years ago and hope to find more time to grow as an artist. I look forward to taking a passion to new levels!

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Ok,words of wisdom: i also started very late in life and as you did tried every medium my most recent brush pens . Sometimes im pleasantly surprised ,sometimes not . But its fun and there is so many nice helpful artists just like me here. im in this community 2 or 3 years now .
welcome tom

i love pencil work too and this is a nice lesson for me. You haven’t missed a thing here,the stroke direction, contrast, and the amazing reflection of the window . thanks for posting tom

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Thank You Tom, I appreciate your response. It is nice to know that I am not the only one that has started all this later in life. When I see what some of the young people can do it makes me think how can I do this, but I do enjoy it. Thanks again, Duckie

I’m Ivey. About 50 years ago I was an art major at a small college. Didn’t end up there, and art got away from me until I retired and I picked it back up. I LOVE ink and watercolor, especially watercolor pencils. Art calms me, it contents me, it pleases me. Thanks, Matt, for the encouragement. You didn’t know you were doing it, but you have made a huge impact on my life.

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Hi, I’m Darrel, a 67 year old, recently retired from the banking industry. I’ve always liked to draw, and Until this past year never invested enough time into the pursuit to improve my skills. I’m looking forward to learning more and seeing others’ work. I’m still amazed at what I have accomplished, and when I finish a drawing that comes out well, I can hardly believe I was the artist involved. Not that the works are so amazing, but I have no idea how I came to be able to do this. I am looking forward to having a great hobby to develop over my “Golden Years”. I will post a picture of one of my drawings. I’ve only used pencil and graphite so far. I have always had an affinity for the pencil, but I look forward to learning other media types in the future. This is a drawing of my youngest granddaughter, Taylor.


What a beautiful picture, and I’m sure her mother will save this forever. I love pencil work, and after subscribing to this site, I have fallen in love with colored pencils (to which I had not been previously exposed). Hopefully, you will find them fun to work with too.
Welcome to a nice group of like minded friends.


Thank you so much for your comments Jody. All encouragement is greatly appreciated!!

Hello everyone! I’m a beginning artist who found the Virtual Instructor on YouTube. I noticed I kept finding Matt’s tutorials whenever I was looking for new art to try. I signed up for the VI program so I can develop as an artist. I enjoy watercolor painting the most. I started with watercolor, but am learning to draw with the 25 Days to Better Drawing. I have also enjoyed using oil pastels and colored pencils.
Kali Pelham


Hi everyone ~ I’m Kat. I’ve spent most of my life with a camera in my hands, but since quarantine, my outings have been limited. I decided it would be nice to learn to draw (again), and to paint. My husband retired last year and took up acrylic painting, but I prefer the looseness of watercolor, so here I am! It’s nice to be able to use some of my landscape and nature photos as reference pictures.

I love the lessons, and the daily challenge. Thanks, Mat!


Hello everyone!

My name is Margie, and I’m 45 years old. I’ve been drawing ever since I was a little girl. I would consider myself above average drawler with the potential to be much better. Aside from high school and some college classes, I’ve never had any formal training.
Some things I’d love to learn from this process are to be freer with art, not get so caught up into details. I tend to get mental blocks with creativity, and I had stopped drawing for years. I found myself getting frustrated with the minor details that i couldn’t seem to get exactly right, and I’d give up mid-drawling. I have countless unfinished drawlings. I’m sure this is a standard part of the process, but I just stopped enjoying art. I’m so excited about this class, and Matt is a great instructor. I’ve already learned so much about technique, and I’m excited to learn more. Thanks!


Hello, my name is Patience and I just was introduced to here. I been trying to go back to the basic’s to help improve my own art. I am hoping to discover new technics. The photo is what I am currently working on. I am struggling with my moon as you can see in the photo. Once I am done I will upload to get everyone’s input. :slight_smile:


Patience this is an AWESOME contour drawing! I sense great things about it. Enquiring minds want to know- what kind of artwork is this going to be?

a painting? colored pencil? graphite*?? so many good things could happen with this interesting and creative idea/outline.

*yeah, prolly not- thats Ink or my eyes are funny.

I encourage you to bust through that feeling Margie.

I’m nearly Exactly the same age and I feel funny after Every drawing; posting it to this site (and another).

if you can relate; I often feel like I’m a little kid hanging my garish drawings on the refridgerator (didn’t we ALL do that when we were small?).

but here is the truth as I understand it. the purpose of a draw is to express yourself and if you never finish that expression it feels hollow and pointless. (this is speaking for me)

I can show you MANY quote from many Incredible artists (including Matt!) that all stress the importance of producing art when your not skilled and there are many, many mistakes.

so feel free to post and finish your drawings.

Hi there. I agree, that feeling of hollowness is a real thing for me. And yes, I’m extremely hesitant to share my drawings with people. It’s something i’ve always held very close to my heart and i was and still am, very fearful of putting it out there. Not so much because of fear of what someone will say or think (although that is part of it), more because i feel vulnerable. Again, i have a lot to learn and when i was young i focused more on pencil drawing and sketching and a lot less on color, technique and mediums. I’m really looking forward to learning that here . Thanks for your feedback and response. I appreciate it!

My compliments and you are right: Matt is a wonderful instructor and will tell you: never give up. It is a wonderful hobby

Hi everyone,
This is the first time I e ever joined an art forum like this.
I started painting at a late age…after retirement. Found out I loved it! I started with drawing, then acrylic, the. Oil, back to acrylic. I have done some acrylic pouring with enhancements as well.
I hope to learn a lot from all of you and share some of my pieces for critique.