@kuroimugetsu: Not sure....I try to enter the contests when I can. If you haven't already seen them, there are a few contests pinned for you to look at. There are a lot of talented artist that post their work there.
@kuroimugetsu: That's a good question....If you consider me to be an artist, I am flattered. I guess you could say everyone that posts art on this site is always trying to "become" an artist. There is no finish line for making it as an artist.....We all just keep learning, experimenting and applying....I know that sounds corny. Since I can remember, drawing is always something I did.....my teachers did not share my enthusiasm during class :) I would buy comics based on the pictures inside I wanted to draw. Drawing was something I always did on my own....never was taught that.
Right now I am focused on posting art with as little reference to existing art as possible. I am trying to draw from memory rather than look at a picture. The above drawing is an example of that.