Saturday, July 16, 2011

My Little Big Chinese Face

I'm becoming a bit obsessed with After Effects, but this is the best way I that I learn - through trial and error. This is not to suggest that I am not busy with my commercial assignments - in fact it's the very opposite, I am very busy. I have 1 illustration due on Monday + 4 pencil sketches, and 1 revised sketch, and then another 2 final illustrations which are due on Wednesday and another 4 due the following Monday and then another 2 due a few days after that, not to mention that I have night school, and a sculpture workshop to fit somewhere in between all of that, and a group show to prepare for on August 6th, at the School of Visual Arts.
But this is the only way that I know how to get my time in when it comes to playfully exploring new media, techniques and concepts: after hours, between jobs, or very early in the morning.
(Sometimes I get to the studio around 7:00am)
At this point in my career I have no desire not to create.
But at the same time because I want to take my career to the next level, I'm forced to create.
Well, forced is a bit of a melodramatic description, and it suggests something negative also, but it's not this way at all. This extra work that I do, this personal work is really what will help me to convince clients and the industry that my work is still relevant. I'd be lying if I said to you that I don't think about a time in the future when work will slow down incredibly. The thing is that I want to know that I am doing everything within my power to ensure that day will arrive later than sooner. I sounds paranoid, don't I?
To me I think I'm being responsible and realistic.
As I said, I want to take my career to the next level, and after ruminating over my options which have been informed by my experience and speaking to several people who I trust, I can't rely on anyone else to do it for me. Yeah, there are agents out there, but honestly I have lost faith in them. That's not to say that there aren't any good ones out there, rather it's just that I haven't found anyone with whom I have been able to partner successfully. The way that I see it is that nobody cares about my work more than I do. Agents can say that they do, but if they represent between 30 and 80 illustrators, then explain to me how they could possible spend as much time pushing your work, as you could do on your own. Yeah, they have connections, some better than others, but in my experience, it always comes to a point where you end up just sitting like some horse in a stable ready to race, but not knowing when your race day will arrive.

I create illustrations for both the love of it, and for the money that it provides for me. It's not wholly an artform to me, it's also my profession, my job, my work. If I could choose only the former, to illustrate for the love of it, then I would; however, it's impossible, at least for me (I don't have the courage) to only focus on projects that I want to create for the sheer fun of it because of all life's bills.
telephone bills
and after all they're all paid, then maybe baby I can chill.

* btw, that's my nasally frog voice reading an excerpt from a written piece of mine. And yes, the timing of the animation is off and looks sort of mash-up, but it's a start...

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