Thursday, April 16, 2015

Why is This Dungeon Full of Potholes?

I want to start off my new blog with a subject that has really hit home this semester:  Determination.

"the quality of being resolute; firmness of purpose." (Thanks

I think this is a quality that all artists need in abundance, especially beginning artists like myself.  I remember when I was younger (pfft, like ten years ago) when I loved to draw anything that would come to my head.  I had these stories that would just play out and I wanted them out on paper.

That love led me to going to college to pursue a degree in illustration.  School is like a dungeon in a Zelda game; all sorts of obstacles, puzzles, and opponents get in the way of your goal with the express purpose of making you quit before you reach the end.

School has been trying to kill off the love that spawned in my heart all those years ago.

Learning is fantastic, and I've certainly learned and improved all these long years at school, but school is also kind of like working in a warehouse putting labels on bottles all day (Where did you get that comparison? Trust me when I say you do not want that job), it will get monotonous and tedious and try and break you down.

That is why determination is critical.

Determination to plow through.  Determination to finish that goal.  To improve yourself.

Determination to dig your nails into that love of yours and never ever let it slip from your grasp.

Here's a quote that I love (Miranda Meeks shared it with me, ya'll should check her out: and sorry for the lengthy-ness:

“Nobody tells this to people who are beginners, I wish someone told me. All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase, they quit. Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn’t have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know its normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one story. It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. And I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s gonna take awhile. It’s normal to take awhile. You’ve just gotta fight your way through.”   - Ira Glass (emphasis was totes added by me)

I feel like my work improves the most when I feel like everything is trying to bring it down (including myself).  Why is that? Probably because my mule stubbornness grows exponentially with the crap that's thrown at me.

Is it all fun and rainbows? Nope.  But maybe that's apart of why I love it.


P.S. (Here is my portfolio that I used to apply into the Illustration program at Utah Valley University (more on that subject later); it's not the best, but hey, it's mine.)

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