Sketch artist Candice Langham has been making waves across social media by showcasing her sketch art, which has received accolades from fans of her work and celebrities alike, but there was a time when she put away the sketch pad and almost stopped drawing her avant-garde interpretations.
On a typical day, you may find Candice Langham at her job as a wafer fabrication specialist, building microchips for computers; however, after working 12-hour shifts, Langham finds comfort in pulling out charcoal and sketching faces from the world around her — or her dreams.
When I was a kid, I suffered a lot from nightmares. … I would draw them to kind of get it out of my head," Langham said. "I was always really imaginative as a kid."
Langham describes her current style as "grunge art," saying she uses colored charcoal pencils to add pops of color to her predominantly black and white drawings.
There was a time when someone close to Langham discouraged her from pursuing art as a potential career choice. Another person criticized her artistic technique. Feeling defeated, she tucked her sketches away.
"I got really depressed, and I kind of just put away the drawings, put them in a memory box, and I didn't draw for a long time," she said.
After a friend encouraged Langham to join Twitter earlier this year, she started sketching the actors from her favorite television shows. Taking the plunge, she decided to publicly share her work and anxiously waited on a response, whether it be affirming or discouraging.
It wasn't long until her sketches of the Rosewood cast were quickly noticed and praised by the actors themselves. Langham says one of the most memorable comments she has received is from Domenick Lombardozzi, a cast member of Rosewood.
"He said I made him look cooler than he ever looked," Langham said with a laugh.
Once she finished a series of Rosewood sketches, Langham framed her art and sent it to the writers of the show. She says she was in shock when the writers later posed with her gift and shared a photo to thank Langham for her work.
"Most recently, doing fan art for Rosewood, I found a style that for the first time I Iooked at a piece, I didn't want to change anything about it," she said. "It was a way to thank them, because I've found a style that really suits me. … They were really encouraging, the whole cast was really encouraging."
She added, "I geeked out, like you wouldn't believe, when I saw Todd Harthan [Rosewood creator] and Andy Berman [Rosewood writer] holding my drawings."
Langham also drew fan art of Houdini & Doyle, and she says Michael Weston (Houdini), shared positive feedback that encouraged her to keep pursuing her artistic dreams.
"I guess the stars don't realize how much just liking a photo [can mean]. If they like it or say anything, or retweet it, to me, that's the biggest compliment you can give. Simply liking any tweet, I think, is just really encouraging," she said.
Aside from drawing, Langham also garnered praise on social media for organizing a fundraiser to benefit The Tiger Frances Foundation, a pet rescue based in California and founded by Jude McVay and Psych star Maggie Lawson. Due to her efforts, over $1,500 was raised for the rescue through fan donations, and Langham worked overtime to purchase Psych t-shirts to give away as an incentive for people to contribute to the cause.
Due to the financial expense of owning a pet, Langham doesn't have one of her own, but she says she was encouraged by the work of TTFF and wanted to give back in some way. She says the response from fans and their generosity to the rescue through monetary support made all the organizing worthwhile.
"It really is a testament to the fandom and how great they were in really getting behind it," she said. "I love to see people doing good and for everyone to come together for such a good cause."
Langham says she wants to continue sketching, and she encourages anyone pursuing their dreams to learn from those who are critical but to never stop doing something they love.
"It's just always been a part of me," Langham said of her desire to sketch. "I take all the comments that are given to me, negative or positive, and look at it as a way to grow. … I want people to feel like they're important, and as long as they're doing something that they love, they should have confidence in it." ------------------------------- Candice Langham can be found on Twitter by searching @waitforfistbump.