Hey there folks,
Have you ever worked really hard at something, only to feel like nothing has been done? Like you’ve been spinning your wheels? It sucks. Especially when you love what you’re doing. You want to believe you can do it, that someday you’ll achieve this goal you have, but what do you have to show for it? It can be really easy to lose faith in yourself and lose hope.
Take this project Aiden and I are working on. We’ve been working on the world, the characters, and the plot of That Which is Hidden for over two years now. Sometimes it’s hard to feel like we’ve done anything at all because we have nothing published. We have no That Which is Hidden portfolio. We don’t even have a Tumblr for it, heck. It’s hard to imagine that we’re launching the yet-unnamed story-podcast in two months (AAAAAAAH) and I’m launching my short webcomic, The Breeze Before the Storm, in eight months (AAAAAAAAAAAAH) and we’re planning on launching our main webcomic, That Which is Hidden, in a year and a half (AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH). What works have we accumulated up til now? Who’s to say this will succeed? What if we’re not ready?
It’s a scary place to be.
In times like these, I tend to follow my own advice, for once.
I often tell my art students that whenever they feel discouraged about their art or feel like they’re not improving, they should take a look at their oldest sketchbook and see how far they’ve come. I did the same thing recently because I was in a bit of a funk. It’s kind of hard to look at some of my old work (good gosh why did I try to make fantasy hoverboarding into a thing), and while I may cringe here and there (seriously WHY) it’s cool to see what my thought processes were back then. I did lots and lots of sketches, many inked drawings, some short test comics, and lots of little snippets of writing. I’ve worked very hard, and I’ve actually come a long way from where I was.
It can be easy to get caught up in others’ ideas of progress and success. It happens to me all the time. But what’s important is that I step back from that, reexamine my own goals, and then try to think about what progress and success look like with those goals in mind. We don’t have any of the milestones of modern-day internet success, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t moving forward. These filled sketchbooks and notebooks are proof of that. We’ll accomplish our goals in our own time and at our own pace, and I think our work will be the better for it.
Thanks for reading,