046: Sticking Around To Find Out
This week I dive a little deep into our conversation with the artist known as ChubbleGum. Learn how he broke through his struggles and found success by accident...
Welcome to week 46 of the Draw or Die Newsletter for Visual Storytellers.
It’s only day 5 of our 28 Day Drawing Challenge. Be sure to check out the hashtag #drawordieclub on Instagram, TikTok (mainly instagram) to see all the wonderful pieces coming in from our community. And reminder, it’s not a race! There is no behind. You can start any day. Sure, you can try to draw them all this month, but even a little drawing is better than none! Give it a go!
Learnings from the Sticker King
We were so thrilled to have our first interview on the Thursday night podcast with Dan from ChubbleGum, who runs a million dollar sticker empire, mainly born on TikTok… by accident. If you didn’t watch/listen to the whole thing, I highly recommend it:
Dan’s journey to success was far from an overnight one. And I wanted to highlight some key things that “stuck” with me from our conversation.
Not his first rodeo…
Dan never set out initially to be Kawaii sticker guy. He talks about how his real passion was painting, pop art. He did tons of work before, animal portraits. He had seen some success there, but one day, it felt like it all dried up. And that can be depressing. Dan struggles with mental health issues as well.
He could have just given it all up. Thrown in the towel.. .but he didn’t because of…
I talked about it in newsletter #001. It’s the core of what this Draw or Die brand is. That somewhere, deep down inside, you’re called to do it. To create. To draw… and draw again. And if you don’t? You feel a bit lifeless. Draw or Die!
In Dan’s case, as he described it, the calling came when he was laying in bed at night, his mind racing. There was no sleep. He decided to get up and go draw. And this time he was just banging out some simple kawaii characters he had stuck his brain.
What would have happened had Dan just stayed in bed? Ignored that feeling? How many of us ignore that calling to the craft?
Dan’s calling led him, seemingly by accident to the birth of Chubblegum.
“3 feet from gold.”
The saying 3 feet from gold was popularized by Napoleon Hill’s “Think and Grow Rich”. To sum it up, it’s a brief tale about a guy who bought a piece of land to drill for oil thinking he’d strike it rich. He toiled away for years. And finally he gave up, he gave in to the pressure and sold the land. The new owner? He dug 3 more feet in the hole and hit the oil. And the old owner stayed bitter, resentful and depressed.
It might seem like this is saying to just never quit and keep doing what you’re doing. No. The message here is, you’re putting the work in. Every day you draw or create, you’re going to get better. You’re digging deep.
You may not see it or feel it, but it’s happening. And one day, just like Dan, you strike the gold. Sometimes not on the path you thought it would happen from.
Success doesn’t always = fulfillment…
Dan touched on this in our private chat before the show, and a little during the interview. While he is super grateful for his success with ChubbleGum, and he loves the brand and that it provides for his family… It’s not completely fulfilling as an artist.
Deep down, Dan wants to paint again.
You’ll have to listen to how he describes it and you’ll understand more. That the art of painting, would put in so much emotional energy. You can feel drained after a session like that.
And he’s still doubting himself. Will people want to see THAT Dan? Will anyone care?
And I think the answer is YES.
Because I want to see that Dan too. I’m so curious now to see his paintings and other work. I want to see more behind the scenes on the realities or running an e-commerce business from a small town in Southwestern Pennsylvania. That’s just selfishly what I want.
I would love to point you to Dan’s Youtube Channel where he plans in the near future to do more behind the scenes and “documenting” the process of life as an artist running a modern cartoon brand.
Draw or Die Video Re-Cap!
All month in February I’ll be doing live drawing streams every night around 8pm EST on the Youtube channel. Set a reminder, come chill in the chat, draw along with me… listen to me tell stories while I draw.
And in Friday night’s i told a story from my youth… how i was labeled the “problem child” for drawing Iron Maiden art :D
AND new today is…ART GOALS CHECK IN! A quick look at how to manage your time, so you have more time to create!
The Weekly Drawing CHALLENGE!
We’re at the start of 28 Day drawing challenge… and today’s drawing prompt is:
Hashtag #drawordieclub on your drawings on social and I may show them off in future videos!
AND our Daily Drawing Prompts paid subscribers get a special “plot twist”
Try it for free!
Hope you’re drawing every day! I’ll see you on the 8pm streams!
☠️ Draw or Die MERCH!
✏️ DIGITAL TOOLS FOR ARTISTS: Custom Brushes, Templates & Prompts
▶️ DRAW or DIE on YOUTUBE (Tutorials & more)