The Desire to Scratch

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Website is back up! + Other stuff

The website is back up! (Finally!) I still have a few tweaks to work out here and there, but for the most part, it’s working okay! XD

I’ve also added the comic that I did for the Silent Manga competition on there…

And speaking of manga, I’m really torn. I feel like I want to start on a new comic, but I’m the type of person where, if I don’t have enough drive to finish something (or if I am not motivated by the initial thing that got me started), then it is very, very hard for me to finish something. But I feel like I want to… I just don’t want it to end up being another unfinished project in the works, you know? (Not to say that I don’t plan on finishing the ones I’m currently working on…)

That’s all. ( ̄∠ )ノ (Random babbling.)

When ‘doing what you love’ turns into ‘doing what you must’

…When turning your ‘hobby’ into a career, there is a dangerous chance that what you originally did, just to please yourself (and maybe a few friends, here and there) has turned into this monster– this insatiable monster– wherein you must create, create, create to reach this never-ending road to perfection. By perfection, I mean this perfect life that you supposedly dreamed up for yourself.

When you were little (or just younger), what did you dream of becoming? Has it manifested itself into reality lately? If not, is there something holding you back? By ‘you’, I am speaking of myself here too. I am always holding my own self back, it feels. People-pleasing has always been a big thing for me to overcome. And even once I feel that I’m over it, the need to do so sucks me right back in. And why?

Of course, I want others to love and appreciate my stories, but to the expense of who I am– who I feel I really need to express? That is not a very fair trade-off, is it? I wouldn’t want my friends to sacrifice their very soul just ‘to be liked’, or what have you. I would like them to ‘express the real you’; everything else will just be a shadow of themselves. Not what I’d really like to see.

So, what’s the big deal then with me, you ask? I’m not quite clear on it, myself, but from what I do know, it seems my ‘people-pleasing’ has turned into ‘company-pleasing’. Instead of sacrificing myself/art to satisfy a certain group of people, that group/audience has merely shifted into people who are in charge of other people– a.k.a. comic book companies. When’s the last real time I did any art JUST for myself, huh? Or just to please myself, or just to get something out, huh?

I mean, I have a few good stories out there that I’ve done in the past– just for myself– but what about now? What, in the last two years have been really for myself, and not for the sake of ‘getting a job’ or whatnot? Of course, I’m not saying that getting a job isn’t important (and even more so if you want to ‘follow your dream(job)s’), but when your dream doesn’t even feel pleasurable anymore, when you lose the original meaning to why you did art in the first place, well… I just don’t get why I’m still doing this anymore.

I’m not saying that turning your hobby into a career is NEVER going to feel like work; it is actually a LOT of work. (I am not there yet, but it is work so far). But there is a difference between doing work that you LOVE, that you don’t MIND how many strenuous hours it takes, and doing work that you despise, don’t look forward to, and ‘must distract yourself to get through it’ work. I can always tell when I am working on a drawing or a story that I love vs. one that I don’t because I don’t NEED any other distractions (in terms of background music/movies and frequent breaks); and in fact, sometimes I cut it completely out because it’s more enjoyable to be in the moment of story-telling  and making things as perfect as can be, that to be partially enveloped in someone else’s story (for distraction purposes). Also, by perfect, I simply mean that you want to get your emotions and meaning in your artwork and words as close to how it is in your head onto the page. You will always be/feel better or worse that someone else, so there’s no use comparing there. (Plus, art is subjective, anyway! 😛 )

What I really mean to say here is that we/I need to be careful when doing/combining something so natural (self-expression through art) with a ‘work’, so that it does not become systematic and chore-like.

I need to draw/write more– a LOT more– if I ever plan to really do art/comics as my ‘career’. I’m 29 already. When is enough going to be enough? Although I believe it is never too late to start on your dream, when are you (I mean “I” going to take the roadblocks off of your own path, and quit pretending that you’re making progress, when all that you’re doing is driving SOMEWHERE, ANYwhere and getting lost? As long as you get back on the road, you’ll be fine (nothing wrong with failure, as long as you realize it and try to correct it), but be careful not to waste any gas by going in a direction you know you never should have traveled. And why should a road trip like this be painful to the very end? As long as you’re enjoying the ride, then it shouldn’t matter, really… but that’s the thing; you have to ENJOY it in order to make your trip (through life) worthwhile. Otherwise, what’s the point? If all you were going to do was have a monotonous art job that you don’t really enjoy, you might as well have done that OTHER monotonous job without wasting all of that practice time.

The difference, I feel, between doing something you regret and ‘normal sadness’ can be found in this slightly old fan-comic that I did about Death Note, oddly enough. (This is an explanation of ‘driving where you know you shouldn’t.’)

100 percent- L's Philosophy, page 1 by genaminna

Even if I never make it to where I (think I) want to be, I should at least enjoy the ride, wherever I am going. Who says that I know the exact direction anyway? Who is really driving this thing?!? Lol. 🙂

When your soul will never be satisfied by your work until you achieve the ‘end result’ that you had for it… well… isn’t being focused on the end result, ONLY– being attached to the outcome– the sure-fire way to not be happy with whatever turns about? After all, how can we expect to control everyone’s reactions to our work?? Maybe it is not up to us on HOW we will achieve our dreams. And maybe that’s a good thing.

I still would like for people to like my artwork and stories, HOWEVER, there is a limit to performing like a scripted clown, hoping that people will laugh VS. a person who is laughing on the inside (or outside) as he is performing.
You get me?

I bid you adieu!~

“What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?” (Matthew 16:26)

Random Girl, Blood Moon, and SNOW?!

randomgirlw

Oohh, new pic!~ It’s a… random girl for practice, lol. Still need my lines!!

Also, there is supposed to be a blood moon tonight. But, alas, there’s snow and clouds… (maybe it’ll clear up by 3am though).
Speaking of snow: what the heck, weather?!! It was 70 degrees earlier today… -_- But that’s typical for the Midwestern states, lol. Crazy weather…

So, yeah, I’m been trying different styles in my coloring (and drawing a bit too), but I realize that the best person to be/imitate is yourself (and God too, in terms of character). But everyone has their own style, their own “something they’re good at.” We should just focus on building our strengths with that, and not worry about the rest. There is at least one thing that can make us unique or “known for”. either in our art or otherwise. So, just work on finding your “special brand of something!” 🙂

/endsupposedinspirationalrant

“Baggage” Cover

BaggagepagesCop

Here’s a new pic! 🙂

Well, this is just the cover page for my comic, “Baggage” that I did about a year ago for the 2013 Silent Manga competition…
Wow, an actual W.i.p. that I completed! Haha. The unfinished version is here. As you can see, it’s dated last year… lols…

By the way, I’m trying to get better in my writing too; been reading books, listening to podcasts about writing (for comics, and in general), and the like. I wonder if creators with long stories ever write (not just outline) out their whole story before beginning to draw it? Inquiring minds (namely me) want to know…

In random news, I went to a TLC concert recently. It was rather cool. (Too bad I never got to see them perform with Left Eye long ago… sigh.) I couldn’t exactly sing to all of their songs though. XD (Not because I didn’t know them… but after becoming a disciple… you know…)

Which brings me to my other thought/conundrum… I can’t finish as many stories that I started before [I got baptized] ‘as planned’, since they are either: 1.) Too perverted/dirty, or too otherwise promoting something trifling. If there is some way I can twist it around where it doesn’t promote as trifling behavior, then I will try and change the story a bit, but… there are certain ones which are blatantly obvious that I couldn’t finish in good conscience.

For example, I made a Gohan and Videl fic long ago which shall not be named… but I cannot finish that in good conscience… sorry! (I was thinking, if I’m married, would it be so bad to think the thoughts? But that is basically inviting other unmarried people too to think these thoughts, and arghhh, it’s about another “person” anyway, and…! Too complicated.)
I am trying to find a way to change/write “Trunks’ Date” a bit where it won’t be so full of perverted stuff (the original idea wasn’t SO bad, but it did include some… eh… “suggestive” scenes that I don’t want to draw out now). So… we’ll see where that goes…!

Hola!~ (after so long…) Here’s some thoughts…

Heya! I just wanted to, again, thank the lovely DBZchick for her awesome generosity in giving me (and another person, at that) a one-year sub on DA!! ❤ ❤ ❤ Isn’t she just so nice? ♥ (I know she wasn’t looking for so much public praise in return, but I can’t help it XD). It’s not an obligation; it’s of my own free will though, therefore it’s more significant!!… Right? :0 RIGHT! XD XD… Annywayyysss… lolz.

I’ve been an interesting person in the last few months… er… more like a year… or so…

That is an understatement for being so upside-down and backwards in my thinking that I was even amusing myself with my own destructive thoughts… XD There, that’s more accurate, lol…

SO, I can give you a quick run-down (if you care to read this; I just need to get out a personal declaration of a sort).
Btw, before I begin, I just finished The Hunger Games: Mockingjay (as an audiobook). It was really good, but, very sad! Though, I think I needed to read it.

As a story-writer, I can kind of understand this too:

“18 Therefore God has mercy on whom he wants to have mercy, and he hardens whom he wants to harden. 19 One of you will say to me: “Then why does God still blame us? For who is able to resist his will?” 20 But who are you, a human being, to talk back to God? “Shall what is formed say to the one who formed it, ‘Why did you make me like this?’” 21 Does not the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for special purposes and some for common use? 22 What if God, although choosing to show his wrath and make his power known, bore with great patience the objects of his wrath—prepared for destruction?” ~Romans 9: 18-22

I was feeling very bitter and angry toward God, and just my surroundings in general (I hated people and myself, among other things…). “Why am I in this position?” I thought. “Why does nothing ever seem to go right?” But then, I kind of reflected upon my past thoughts in the last year or so.

I’d become very idolatrous.

This means that I’ve been “worshiping” idols– things, people, places, anything else– instead of the one, true God. Now, now, if you are going to retort back to me in your disbelief, please either 1.) Keep it to yourself. 2.) Let me know how you feel, though don’t expect to convince me.

I will now continue.

When there is something that I know I should be doing and do not do it, it comes back to haunt me. Anything, from drawing something I should be drawing, or helping someone in need, or even thinking a certain way I know I should–but don’t– think… it always catches up with me. (James 4:17) And in this past year of reflection, I’ve finally figured out why. Call it karma if you want; whatever it is, I call it divine retribution, or rebuking.  There is only so much you can do before it comes back to haunt you. If you’ve realized your mistakes, and don’t take the time to correct it, it will be even worse than if you didn’t realize it and were punished for it. (Luke 12:47-48) All in all, I knew that something was wrong; I knew I was idolizing things, but it never occurred to me how to change it, or that I needed to seek help. I thought it would go away all on its own. Not only that, I did not realize the depth of idol worship that I had been doing. I had become blinded by what I believed my idols would do for me– what I THOUGHT would make me “happy” once I got them. But, boy, was I fooled.

“Nana…how come being happy and making your dreams come true are two different things? Even now, I still don’t know why…” ~Nana Komatsu (Nana manga)

I feel like I’m beginning to understand it now… I don’t totally get it, but I’m beginning to understand.

They are just empty promises; promises grounded on sand rather than solid ground; promises that can break and shatter at any moment. Who ever promises that, with wealth, brings everlasting freedom, or that no one can ever take it away? Who ever promises that your “love”– that you devoted your entire life and heart to– will never fade into nothingness? How can we build our faith and happiness on our dreams, after all? Who says (for example), that even if I did sell a million comics (hypothetically), that I couldn’t lose as many fans that I’d gained just as quickly? You see it happening all around you, right? Stars and celebrities (even internet celebrities) that gain fame and lose it just as quickly– if not, quicker– than how they’ve obtained it. People driving themselves into starvation for the purpose of composing the “right” body image, and going mad when they find that it’s unattainable, unless by developing a permanent sickly status. (Well, eventually, you won’t be sickly. You will be dead.)

But isn’t that just like anything else though? Eventually, our cravings for these temporary, replaceable pleasures will only starve us, always leaving us wanting more, more MORE. It never satisfies; it never COMPLETELY takes away our unhappiness. In the dead of the night, in the minutes before breathing your last breath, will the worries of those even matter in the end? What will truly matter to you then? What you wore to your homecoming? What you ate for breakfast before ‘that’ big day? What dates you went on? Those– used to be believed– “unrecoverable”  bad days you used to have?

Life goes on, doesn’t it…? What should really matter? What about saying what you want to say; the stories that YOU want to say– despite the wanted recognition and/or monetary result that you want? What about helping to improve the life of another person? What about loving someone– your family, a stranger, your friends– here and now? What will really matter? (Loving God and others, of course!)

I know that people who don’t believe in God– or anything ‘solid’ and unchanging for that matter (except ‘change’, itself) will not understand, nor try to. Don’t worry; I do understand where you may be coming from. (I will never be able to completely understand, but I can see why you would not believe.) After all, people have been distorting God’s words in the bible, and using it for their own selfish purposes for years and years. The distortion is inevitable. However, we have the free will to choose what we want to believe. You wouldn’t want someone to love you out of compulsion anyway, would you? But I also believe in the basic facts and principles about this world.

Especially when I see this world in such chaos, it is very unsettling to think that God is just “letting” this happen. But, then again, I think about people’s free wills. If we didn’t have them, we would just be robots. WE have the choice to make the world a better, more richer place, OR we also have the choice to make it into a destructive, suicidal place. The choice is indeed ours, but we need to ACTIVELY EXERCISE the GOOD in us in order to rule out/even out the BAD in others. There is NO way to erase the darkness in the world without lighting a light. You can’t battle darkness with darkness!

Anyway… I will just say that in these unstable times, it truly is God who never changes. God is my rock. But how do I know? Maybe you think it’s because I’m crazy? Maybe you think it’s very stupid to believe in something/someone that is invisible (in the normal way we see anybody, anyway). But since everything we CAN see is temporary (just name it), I’d like to believe that what we cannot see is eternal. (2 Corinthians 4:18)

Faith is called faith for a reason though. Blind faith, I do not believe. I need reasons. But I see them when my eyes and ears are open to them. (Matthew 13:11-17) Otherwise, I feel the world is a dreadful, unhappy place. Again, we have a choice– to see the world in darkness or to see the world in light. If parts ARE dark, what will you do? Sit there and moan or mope about it? Or will you let your light shine onto it? If it is light, will you expose your own personal darkness onto it, thereby inevitably affecting someone else by your negative shadowed world? It is your choice.

Before I finish, I just want to say thank you to DBZchick again for her gift of generosity. I was feeling very down. Ready to give up; not really minding if I had died (Would anything be different for me then? But I would never commit suicide since I knew God does not like murderers…); but then someone’s light affected me. The simplest acts of kindness can often go unnoticed (by people), but even so, it can make a huge difference in the world. No matter what we do– whether it’s good or bad, the world will feel your light or darkness. It DOES affect everyone else, no matter how much of a small island you want to live on. It will not go unnoticed forever. If EVERYONE decided to constantly commit acts of kindness, how do you think the world would look? So I/we need to stop blaming God for “letting this happen”. WE are letting this happen!!

So if you DO want the world to become a better place, it’s about time to see what you can do to light it up, right? For every act of evil in the world, perhaps do an act of kindness. God does work many wonders THROUGH us too. We have a spirit with a conscience. In this bleak and dark-ridden world, it will remind people that there is “some good in this world, after all.” 🙂 And, boy, do we all need reminders…! 🙂

Rainbow Kisses– Orieal and Co.

RainbowKisses2Orieal

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Also on DA:

“Well, there’s more than Orieal, actually! lol (She’s just in the front, that’s all.)
These are characters from my Nekoturr’s Realm story… and actually… I’ve been work on this pic off and on for like 3 years (well, Dec. 2010)! I’m just trying to finish up some half-done things around here, is all…
🙂
Hope you like it! (And my 80’s color scheme! lols)

From left-to-right: Orieal, Cara (bg), Nikolao (bg)
Then top-to-bottom on right: Rukii, Trevor, and Marihara

Genesis 9:12-16
“12 And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: 13 I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. 14 Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, 15 I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life. 16 Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth.””