Welcome back everybody. It's been quite a chaotic few months it seems. As I'm writing this, my freelance project is wrapping up. I know I can't believe it either, it feels like it's been going on for a long time. I'll talk more about the project once it has been released, but this animation was probably some of the most intense work I've done. I've learned a lot of lessons with this project that I plan on incorporating into my life.
But before that, if you haven't watched my new short film flight, watch that first! I spent a lot of time making it last year and it's finally available for all to watch!
So during the production of this project, I had a ton of stress in my life, from multiple areas. Stress about the content I would be putting out, stress about the project, stress about my life, etc. As you can probably can tell, this is not the healthiest way to live. You would be right. Throughout the project I basically had no social life, no romantic interests, and really no fun at all.
It sounds really intense and it was, but going through this have given me what seems to be a laser focused and acute sense of the direction I have been taking in my life versus the direction I need to take. It sounds like a really small difference but in actuality it's quite massive a gap.
I have taken a ton of half measures in the pursuit of my dream with the expectation that it'd be enough. I don't think this happened consciously, but when I look back on my output, I see a very confused artist trying to land in an ever changing environment. This made me realize I had been consistent in the wrong things, and I wouldn't make any headway into pushing my career as an animator forward. In all honesty, there's simply too much to list right now, but some of the things I feel I haven't gotten quite right is how I collect my income, who I collaborate with, and how I spend my free time. Understanding these things within context has given me a very drastic, birds eye view of the things I've been doing wrong.
So the question here is what does all of this mean? My takeaway is that there are 3 things I want to focus on: my life, my animation, my finances. When it comes to my life, there are hobbies and interests I would love to pursue but simply haven't had the time nor made the appropriate amount of money to pursue them. I have since realized that this is something I shouldn't fantasize about doing anymore and need to take the action now to make it happen.
I'm going to skip the animation part for a bit. When it comes to finances, I have not been the smartest kid on the block. There are student loans I want to take care of and I need to commit to better jobs if I want to be debt free. This means I most likely will not take on any freelance in the foreseeable future. The amount of money I need to walk away with from a project, versus the amounts clients will generally ask to pay, is too far of a gap for me to live reliably off of. Now if I get a client willing to pay me well to pursue their creative vision, I'm all for it, but chances are those clients will have to be corporations or larger businesses, not individuals. This is not a slight on any particular client, it's just the nature of doing animation for freelance. It's a lot of work, like literally an insane amount to do, and a fair price for me is likely out of the average person's budget. In liu of this, I've simply decided to take on either more temp jobs, part time or full time work. The money is simply too important of a factor for me in life at the moment, and while I'll say I'm not chasing money, I want to pull enough into my zone to be able to do the things in life I want to do now.
Lastly, is my animation- or more generally my art. Last year I made some changes to my art schedule. I ended the 'How to be successful' series and lowered the amount of illustrations I put out a month. The new changes in art I will be making is that I will focus 99% of my art time on making animations. I will not be doing monthly illustrations any more. I'm debating. Whether or not if I should close down that part of my site or not. To substitute the monthly illustrations, I will begin to do doodle requests. Probably once a week or two. I'm not sure how this will change my social network behavior, but I do know I put wayyyyyyyyy too much time in planning, illustrating and writing updates for illustrations. So I want to drop all of that so I can focus on being what I'm supposed to be. An animator. I'm not sure either how much more animation will premiere a month (I've yet to do the planning for this), but this is a change that needed to happen. This does not include illustrated or comic products, just the kind of stuff you see me put out weekly. I do have some comic projects planned, but those will be for profit projects.
Sigh of relief
So this was a long post that's been needed for a long time. As I've said, I've had a huge shift of perspective due to this project and it's made me the most laser focused I have ever felt in my life. I know exactly what I want to do, how to achieve it and am finally making the necessary moves to make it happen. I really think this is for the best.