recentlies

Hey friends, it’s been such a long while! I can spend a bit of time online tonight as I won’t need to get up until later tomorrow, so I popped on to wordpress because I have been thinking about updating my blog for a while now. Then, I discovered the beginnings of this old post, from 9th February. It’s now the end of March! So please enjoy the beginnings of my old post and then after that, the start of my new post.

Early February 2015

Life has fallen again into its usual patterns here. I do the work thing in the first, main part of the week. On Saturday night after finishing work I usually crumble to cravings and go get an Indian takeaway. We used to have Indian takeaways every weekend back at home. In the second, smaller part of the week, I try to catch up with chores, study some Japanese, and attempt to negotiate a sort of social life, as much of a social life as possible for a shy, introverted type person like me.

The routine part is good, I suppose, although lately I’ve also been a little stressed about my job. This is mainly because I want to be the best I can be, and I want to deliver worthwhile and exciting lessons to my students so that they’ll enjoy themselves and want to come along. I want to give them something positive.

There are a few events and bits and pieces coming up at work and that’s exciting, because it keeps me busy and gives me new experiences, although I usually end up feeling nervous too.

Late March 2015

Brief weather update: we may have had the last snow of winter last week. We’ll see – my student said it could even snow in April. I have my fingers crossed because I don’t want to continue with using 5 blankets, onesie, jumper, tracksuit bottoms and a hot water bottle at night. Please hurry up, Spring! I’m looking forward to sakura.

Well, we’ve moved on quite a while from my last post. The events that I wrote were approaching… I can’t really remember what they even were. But, I suppose that means they must have been ok.

As for updates on things like my social life… I think that’s improved somewhat lately. I have gotten to know some friends a bit better and it is nice to feel a part of a group. Unfortunately though, a lot of people are leaving this Spring. Moving back to home countries, or getting jobs in different parts of Japan… I hope they have lots of fun and I wish them all the best. It was lovely to meet them and I hope I can meet them again. Still, more people are moving on soon! I will miss these people!

With the Indian takeaways… I have been trying to convince myself to stop having them for the sake of my health, but I continue. Although I hope I can call myself a little less indulgent than before. Recently I have been enjoying cooking and making weird salads. I have discovered how amazing avocado is and try to find a way to add it into any dish I make, but I am usually too impatient for it to ripen and end up eating weird, hard avocado slices.

I feel like my Japanese study is going well lately. Vocabulary and kanji are good and I have been able to maintain these reasonably well despite spending less time studying them (I want to catch up, though!). Grammar is a stumbling block. I know a lot of people think that immersion and memorisation of sentences is the best way to learn things… despite this, I still enjoy working through a text book and studying grammar. I still get the immersion bit from living within Japan. I do plan to start memorising sentences in the future though (a la AJATT.com), but not now. And that’s okay, because I’m not in any rush to reach N2 level.

Lastly, with art, I have been keeping up a sort of routine in that I usually try to get several hours solid drawing time in every Monday, my 2nd day off. It’s been pretty good. I have tons of ideas, however, yet when I come to execute them I feel confused and not sure how to proceed. The technical bits are ok, but just coming up with a meaningful composition is hard for me. Maybe I’m scared/intimidated, maybe I just don’t have it in me to do that kind of illustrative work – this is something I definitely fear. I should probably start with thumbnails first instead. Try different ways of starting out. Do you think that for some people it is just impossible to do something? Or is it possible to learn something that comes unnatural to oneself? Is this even unnatural to me or am I just lazy? Ok, less questions. I will just keep going and somehow try my best.

This weekend, I have an extra day off so perhaps I will either go explore a new town or I will use this time to super recharge myself, clean everything, catch up on studies and draw loads.

Recent Links

Portfolio: Yay, I finally updated my portfolio a little bit. My friend sent me a photo of the packaging I designed for him, so I uploaded it to my portfolio along with some recent sketches, and updated my description. If you have any tips about my portfolio (or actually, anything in particular) please let me know.

Tumblr: Since I mentioned that I’ve been keeping up with my art pretty well I thought it makes sense to remind you, my dear friends, this is my tumblr, where you can find all of my sketches.

James Victore’s Youtube: So I found out about this guy last year before I moved to Japan, watched his Skillshare videos, and watched loads of his Youtube videos too. He has even more now! So tonight I’m listening to even more! He’s funny, and very motivational for artists! Please listen and enjoy.

Thanks as always for reading. I hope you had fun. I am sorry there are no pictures in my Japan based blogs because I am tired and want to listen to videos now! If you want a picture-based experience of my life, I recommend just following my tumblr.

Elysia

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priorities

sktch

Hi everyone,

I don’t have many updates to give, except that I have been drawing a lot in my sketchbook (above) which has been going well, but I do not have many new polished pieces. I’m working on a commission to draw a family portrait with cats, and it’s taking a lot of my time… once that’s done I’ll post a picture of it and then get on with the other projects. Plus, I realised that I need to get a portfolio together ASAP. I do have a rough portfolio, but a lot of it is old work and I don’t feel like it is good or finished enough.

todo nun

an example of the to do lists all over my sketchbooks

Although my days are not always filled, and I wish I could see my friends more, I have a lot of different priorities at the moment that I’m trying to work through. Along with that I have the usual worries of will I have enough money. I thought, maybe I’ll post a list here of all the stuff I have to do so that I can work through it. For people who have followed my blog for a while, to-do lists are a frequent feature… I usually make at least one a day, and don’t always complete them. I think they help me with my productivity.

Priorities at the moment

  1. Game design projects – website, polish up first game (which means maybe making more animations for monsters, comics to intersperse the levels, etc.) and consider new game projects.
  2. Family portrait commission – I’m currently inking it all and shading. Next stop is colouring.
  3. Thought Bubble convention – need to sort out transport and actually create art for it!
  4. Illustration for a friend’s tabletop RPG project – I need to get started on this once I finish the family portrait commission … it’s probably going to be a digital painting but I’m not sure yet. Maybe a combination of traditional and digital.
  5. Collaboration with a friend who writes poetry – this is probably a longer term project as it will take a lot of work and sending things between one another.
  6. Applying for jobs – preferably weekday, part time if possible… I’m looking for a ‘normal’ job to supplement my art…
  7. Studying Japanese – I want to get to a level where I can work in a job like translation, but that will probably take a long time to get to that level.
  8. Driving – I have to learn to drive as soon as I can…

And eventually, I hope I can work on some more personal work, but it looks like that will be relegated to sketchbook work for now. I’d also like to create a comic, but that’s on the waiting list too. It’ll be great to finally be able to cross off numbers 2-4 soon!

sktch2

personal work will be on the back burner for the moment … is that what people say?

Oh, I watched a documentary the other day which had been recommended to me by friends. It’s called Beautiful Losers and it’s worth a watch. I suppose you could say it’s about subculture and a particular group of artists who would be described as ‘low brow’ … Watching it made me feel more inspired and motivated to create, perhaps it will be insightful for others too.

Anyway, hope you all don’t mind, I’m never sure what to put as the content for a personal blog… I suppose the purpose of this blog is to motivate myself, share with friends, share what I’ve learned and meet people with cool art and a similar mindset. Thanks for reading, anyway. I’m working 5-9pm at the takeaway tonight. I feel pretty overwhelmed with life stuff at the moment so I hope that if a customer is rude to me I won’t get super upset…

Elysia