Sunday, December 22, 2013

art shouldn't be this stressful

"You're a sophomore, you shouldn't be worrying about this until later!"

"That's like three years away, you're crazy."

"You should be enjoying the stress-free underclassman life! What are you doing??"

Hush hush. 

I've come to the conclusion that I very much would like to go into animation, special effects, and that sort of deal when I'm older.

Which then prompts me to freak out about art schools, and get a good idea of what I'm getting into.

Yes, I'm looking at schools all over the country.
Yes, I'm thinking about my portfolio to send to these schools.
Yes, I'm doing everything in my power to prepare myself for this. Which includes:

a) Continue to teach myself proportions, anatomy, digital art techniques, and such
b) Switch from acting class to animation class for my second semester of school this year
c) Sign up for summer art programs
d) Plan out my ideal schedules for junior and senior year, to fit in art and portfolio classes

Art is therapeutic, though that's not why I'm doing this. I've just never been more overwhelmed and stressed about anything else in my entire life. And I think that's hilarious.

We've been over this; I love to laugh at myself and my stupid problems. I try not to take myself too seriously.

Here, I'll aid you with another hyperbole and a half inspired comic.


My mini-mes in my conscience are being quite rude to me these days.

I was already dealing with the loop of studying and practicing flute, which every young passionate musician deals with. When you're studying, you could be practicing. When you're practicing, you could be studying. 

Now we throw art into that mix, and it gets even worse. Two options impact my future career at different intensities, and the other is simply a hobby that I'm hopelessly passionate about.

So now it's more like, When you're studying, you could be practicing or teaching yourself art. When you're practicing, you could be studying or teaching yourself art. When you're teaching yourself art, you could be studying or practicing. 

Talk about priorities and time management.

I think I've hit yet another horrible artists block. Artists blocks are horrible for me; it's like I've forgotten how to draw. During the time period where I'm not in an artist's block, I produce one or two good proud pieces, and then I'm back to my block.

While I'm scrambling desperately to teach myself new techniques for the sake of learning, and to pull myself out of this block, I discovered my new favorite website.

CGCookie.com, where the hell have you been.

There are several Networks of CGCookie.org, all of which include tutorials, exercises, activities, and all sorts of things to help you advance in the focus of each network.
  1. Concept Cookie ~ Digital Art 101. I've been taking notes on hue, value, saturation, hue bending, temperature, key light, fill light, rim light, shadows, all kinds of crazy stuff. And that's just out of the free videos that I get to watch without becoming a "citizen."
  2. Blender Cookie ~ No, this is not a network to teach you how to make the most out of your kitchen blender. Blender is 3D Creation software, 100% free download. I'm very new to Blender, and was introduced to it just today. After watching the first five free introduction videos, I went ahead and downloaded Blender 2.69. This stuff is crazy complicated. There are endless drop down menus, options, all kinds of words that I don't understand, and I'm doing my best over here.
  3. Max Cookie ~ 3DS Max is also a 3D Creation software, but this one costs money. So I'm not touching this one for now.
  4. Modo Cookie ~ Another 3D Creation software, also costs money, also a no for now.
  5. Unity Cookie ~ Aha, a free version is available!! Unity is more focused on game design and creation, which I'm curious about as well. Hell, I don't mind having some crazy smart guy teaching me all about it. I'm all in. I'll become a silly little citizen of CGCookie to get as much out of it as I can; it comes straight out of my allowance, so I'm all set. 
Yeah, I'm sacrificing the vast majority of my monthly allowance for this. Two words: WORTH IT. 

Like I said above, I just downloaded Blender, and took it out for a spin. 

I tried to see how much of the skills from the introduction videos I could regurgitate in the program itself. The answer? Not much. I need to re-watch them, and take more extensive notes.

I first opened the program, and it looked like this.



Keep in mind, this is on my 13'' laptop. (I'll probably have to get an actual mouse to work with this program. Track-pad isn't doing squat for me).

Can we just take a moment to look at how many drop down menus, panels, options, bars, etc there are?? During the tutorials, I was thinking, oh, that doesn't look too bad. I can get used to that. But as soon as I had it thrown in front of me on my own computer, I forget everything I just learned, and I freaked out.

But freaking out never really stopped me, so I kind of just rolled with it. Tested myself to see if I could make something move, or if I could even remember how to properly select an object without moving it on the x, y, or z axis.

I couldn't do much, but somehow I managed to make this happen. I don't know what I did, but that's not supposed to happen.



At this point, I decided to call it a day, as I had proved to myself that I still haven't the slightest clue how to work this program all by myself. 

After Christmas, I'll gladly post the step-by-step phases of how I put together my most recent work of art. I'm quite proud of it, given that I'm still quite new to the art scene. 

I think it's safe to say that it's the 1 year anniversary of the end of my horrible anime drawing phase. According to one of my friends, who also acts as my art mentor in some aspects, the "anime phase" is a necessary step. I guess I can agree. No one can jump right into drawing perfect realism noses and eyes and mouths; they all get too frustrated and resort to drawing triangles for noses and single lines for lips in anime, and then workup from there. 

That same friend also said, "There will be many frustrating noises."

That couldn't be more true. 

On that note, I bid thee good night.

I've had enough Pink Floyd for the day.

Cheers,
SWH

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