I improved so much this month! Feeling really happy with the art I'm making
Started a fundamentals class with TB Choi (character designer for Valorant). I thought this'd be an intro level course, but half of my classmates are Twitter art celebrities. Most of my improvement from this class came from pulling all nighters to try and keep up with the other students.
The past year, I often felt a bit insecure telling others that I left teach to pursue art, when my level of skill wasn't great. After this month, I feel very confident in who I am and want to become
Went on my first ever vacation with family to Hawaii. My brain doesn't know how to vacation, pulled an all-nighter on my first night there finishing art homework.
Visited SF for the first time in a year. Catching up with old friends and coworkers was really nice, but I'm glad I don't live there anymore. It feels a bit like high school or undergrad -- it raised me, but in so many different ways I've grown past it.
Finished Andy Cung's intro to storyboarding class. The final assignment was to board a comedy dialogue scene. I need to get better at drawing characters on model, but I'm so happy with how much I learned in 8 weeks
Finished most of the figure drawing course by Michael Hampton. I understand muscle anatomy now :)
I also started a foundation sketching course with Charles Lin. He's the best teacher I've had so far, good vibes and great at lecturing and giving feedback. I'm finally getting a handle on the fundamentals of art!
With this month's art classes I'm finally identifying as an art student. I no longer feel the need to introduce myself as someone who worked in tech for a decade and led large projects. I'm happy to just be seen as an art student who cares deeply about their craft
Read some feminist essays (The Right to Sex) for the first time. Sexual assault disturbs me to no end and I want to learn how to better support my friends.
It was my 21st birthday! Cooked dinner for a dozen friends, and afterwards we went out to a bar to go dancing. When the bartender saw my ID (and that it was my first time in a bar not commiting a felony) he got excited and we did shots together.
Worked through the first few weeks of a figure drawing course taught by Michael Hampton. Feels like I'm improving my process for drawing figures for the first time in months.
Also completed the first half of a course taught by Andy Cung: Intro to Storyboarding for Animation. After a few weeks of assignments I feel comfortable with boarding dialogue scenes in multi-cam scenes ("sitcom style" flat staging). Really happy with how my character acting, blocking, and camera shot choices have improved over the month.
I read Phillip Glass' memoir and was struck by how he worked day jobs for 21 years before being able to make a living off music. Despite this, music was his driving goal and identity the whole time, and he never compromised on his creative vision by writing things like ad jingles.
At some point I realized that I want to make my own animated films. This gave an immense amount of clarity, and a huge mountain to climb.
I'll have to become great at storyboarding, animation, color, and 3D modelling. I'll also have to learn things I have no experience with yet: screenwriting, story structure, cinematography, and film theory.
Lastly! I discovered that capitalism is amazing: in the US you can spend ~$20 a month to watch unlimited movies at the theatres. One week I watched a movie every single night.
Every morning this month I spent 3 hours doing timed (1 to 10 minute) figure drawing at the Art Students League of New York.
This was my first time taking an in-person art class. Being around other people who had the same goals as me is incredibly motivating.
I also reviewed drawing heads for the first time in a year, and worked through Andy Cung's gesture drawing for storyboarding class -- it was good to learn how to show a lot about the figure in just a few lines
Went to Boston and caught up with a few friends who I haven't seen in ages. It's nice to realize the post-school, my friendships can be permanent if I put in the effort
Read Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow -- a beautiful romance novel where the two main characters never end up romantically together, but instead follows their creative partnership in making video games over several decades
After 6 months and 350+ hours, I finally finished my art portfolio application for animation at Sheridan.
This is the hardest I've ever worked on a project. Many late nights, abused caffeine for the first time, and accidentally lost a few pounds.
From my art teacher
"If you need some last minute motivation, look at the drawings you made when you started studying with me in October -- you're one of the most driven, hard working, and improved students I've ever worked with"
Moved to NYC and spent a lot of time with new friends: board game nights, hosting dinners, writing clubs, and Sunday morning waffles.
Slept on cardboard for a few nights at my new apartment.
Skrillex dropped two new 10/10 albums. Saw him, Fred Again, and Four Tet perform a surprise show out of a school bus in Times Square, and a 5-hour marathon DJ set at Madison Square Garden.
Also got into reading graphic novel memoirs. Their visual nature is great for personal stories. Favourite from this month The Best We Could Do, exploring the author and her family's experience with the Vietnam war and immigrating to America.
Sheridan portfolios are due in February, and the workload is overwhelming. I need to create portfolio pieces for life drawing, hand anatomy, character design, storyboards, animation, interior and exterior layouts, and 5 personal pieces
For all of these areas I'm not quite where I need to be, so I'm working as hard as I can to improve quickly, but to be honest I'm feeling a bit stretched thin
Every day I'm drawing at the library from 10am to 8pm. Lord give me the strength to finish this project
Most of this month passed by in a blur of drawing, but there were also some fun moments with friends
Went to the Art Gallery of Ontario, and got to experience Jónsi's Obsidian -- a near pitch black room filled with 195 speakers and a faint volcanic smoke. The combination of the music, lack of vision, and smells made me feel, for the first time, a quasi-religious experience.
Also cafe sketched, watched movies, and lifted with friends
The fantasy characters below are ones I designed back in October, but this time I tried working with color for the first time. Really pleased with how good they look despite only being colored with flats, shadows, and highlights
Lived with family in Toronto for the holidays
Caught up with high school classmates I hadn't seen in years. It's nice to see how people ended up going on such different paths in life. The delinquent druggie has a music promotion business. The music producer / athlete joined the military. The Star Wars nerd with a big YouTube account has a gf and is in charge of his uni's CS club.
Went to a ski lodge with a bunch of friends. Tried "The End" hot sauce, and its six million scovilles (the world's hottest pepper, california reapers, are two million) had me feeling like I had looked death in the eyes for 5 minutes straight
I left my job as a data engineer to study art full-time! I made an animated music video to celebrate.
Having the creation of art being my purpose every day (as opposed to working, then drawing a bit in the evening) has been a change that I’m still getting used to.
Most of my days have been spent drawing on Waterloo and Laurier campus, and taking breaks to play on public pianos.
Spent a week hanging out with my family and great-grandma.
Watched the League of Legend world finals with 50 people at the Waterloo esports club. Had such a good time yelling with the crowd. I'll never forget when Guma stole Baron in Game 5, and we all erupted in incoherent yelling.