Ok, so the numbers say that this will be post number 600. I feel like I want to do something special for it, and after having a little think, I remembered that I’m currently reading a book on my Nexus called “Be creative” by Infinite Ideas – it was free and has so far given me a few decent tips. In one chapter it had a list of questions you should ask of yourself in order to understand yourself, because how often do you actually stop and question things?
So, here we are with the questions and answers. I endeavoured to be as brutally honest as I could be and I gave each question a lot of thought. I ended up spraying my thought process on to the page as I was typing, and I did repeat myself a little, so be warned!
WARNING!!! VERY LONG POST!!!
This post is going to have the most tags ever.
What do I want to achieve with my life?
I can see that there are three facets to this answer.
I would like to raise a family with my wife. One or two kids, as many as the universe allows me to have. It’ll be a challenge raising them in this house, with such a dominant personality at one end, and a scatty personality letting her kids run amok at the other. It won’t be without benefits – we won’t have to scrimp, and the house and garden is lovely, but I don’t care for some of the eating habits that are garnered here, or the attitudes towards some social groups. We’ll have to take the bad with the good. Having the support of so many people will be a good thing – it won’t be the three of us alone muddling our way through, we’ll have support.
In the realm of employment, I want to be known for the things I create, earn money from them. I read a book “How To Find Your Element”, and it really helped me identify that this was what I wanted to do as a profession. I was blessed with a sliver of talent, it would be a shame to waste it. Not just drawing pictures, but being creative with the internet and fostering communities. My experience with Random Fury has proven one thing – I can bring people together.
You can read about my creative targets here: http://iaindstewart.net/blog/2013/01/31/creative-targets/
In terms of me, physically, I want a six-pack – as shallow as it sounds. Well, not really, I want to be stronger, faster and more agile, with more stamina – and I am more than willing to take the physical attributes that may come with that. I realise I need to work for it – stopping the binge eating would help. It’s not like I don’t have motivation, I feel motivated every time I look at myself in the mirror before I get in the shower – but I just can’t harness that motivation into a desire to lift weights or go sprinting. I half-heartedly try things every couple of weeks, but I feel like I need to somehow wangle longer shifts over fewer days at work and make some kind of time-table or routine before I can fully adopt it as a lifestyle. I have more than enough research material, it’s just a case of collating it.
But then I always do this. Make excuses as to why I can’t do things right now, I put things off, make other things priorities. Jane noticed it, made me aware I do it. To me, it always felt natural, a reason as to why doing X is futile now as Y hasn’t been completed and I need A, B and C to align first. But she made me see that I am just making excuses.
You can read more about my fitness targets here: http://iaindstewart.net/blog/2013/01/31/fitness-targets/
Why do I want what I want?
I think I want the things I want because they are all basic, primal human desires. To have a family, pass on your genetic code. Provide security for said family, and have fun while you’re doing it.
What should I want?
I really have no idea what I should want. What do other people of my age want? Family? Financial stability? Health? To have fun? Same as me then, really.
What matters to me at this time in my life?
Jane matters to me. My Mum, David, Jasmine, Otis. Lewis, Ethan. Some friends. Few workmates.
Being able to do what I want and say what I think matters to me. I wish I could say what I am thinking all the time but I don’t really want to be one of “those” people. I am working on being diplomatic with it. I hate existing on egg-shells just to keep the peace, but peace is better than war. The truth matters to me. I am fed up of people lying. Big lies, little lies, any lies, they are all shit, and tear families apart.
My ability to learn and improve matters to me. I want to be a better person, but on my terms. Which brings me to the next question.
Am I still learning and growing?
I think I am. I mean, look at the first piece of art I done using my Bamboo, then look at the latest piece… Quite a difference. I’m still learning a lot about my artistic endeavours. ImagineFX is helping with that, it’s a great magazine.
What do I not question about myself?
I don’t know to be honest. If I knew what I didn’t question, then I would question it. That is my nature.
What can I learn from this?
Maybe I need to do some serious soul-searching? I’m not sure. Do I need to question things?
How ambitious am I these days?
But honestly, a little ambivalent. I need motivation. I’ll never pencil a Marvel comic if I rarely draw. I’ll never have a six-pack if I rarely lift. I need a routine – not just a routine, but a timetable. I feel like I have so much to do, and I have already wasted so much time, I don’t know where to go or what to do first. I was thinking that staying up ’til 3AM and doing writing or drawing was bad, but I tried going to bed as soon as I got in from work, and I did get up earlier, but the temptation to use the Xbox was too much and I just spent my mornings playing Splinter Cell. When Jane is in bed then I can’t play on the Xbox, so I come in here and be productive. It’s no big deal that I go to bed late and get up late, is it? Some people seem to think so. Makes me lazy, apparently. But we all sleep for the same amount of time, I just do it at different times to them.
Although, upon further reflection, I’ve done quite a lot in the past year or so. I launched eyess.net (this website is no longer running) about a year ago and that’s been a revelation for me. Having somewhere of my own online to post thoughts on my completed artworks? It’s great fun. The main facet of randomfury.co.uk, the forum, is going to be overhauled early next year. I’ve got the framework in place and I know it’ll transfer over alright, it’s just having some time to make sure it all goes smoothly. Then there’s RFX, which is going to take place next year on Random Fury’s tenth anniversary.
What am I afraid of losing, or gaining?
I am afraid of losing my wife, for sure. I recently found out that I was afraid of losing this house, actually. Although I would rather we lived somewhere of our own, when it emerged that we could lose this big house I was a little worried. Where we share the mortgage three ways, one party was drastically reducing their income, and I was not 100% sure that things were going to be ok until I spoke to Jane about it. I would rather we lived somewhere on our own? Well, yes, I would. We used to live with my Mum and Jane hated it. When we moved away from my Mum, she was happier, and I was happier being away from Southampton as I wasn’t being haunted by the ghosts of my past anymore, but I have realised that I do not like living with her family. We’ve tried it both ways and neither of us like the other alternative. Ah well. Jane has told me that we’re here for the long term due to the mortgage, so I guess that’s that.
Would winning the lottery be a blessing or a curse?
Ah, I’ve blogged about this before. Would I still put everyone else’s happiness above my own? Or would I just go off and buy a fortress of solitude in the middle of some random city with a kick-ass internet connection and just draw and paint and fuck around all day for the rest of my life?
What would I do if I knew I couldn’t fail?
I would succeed, surely? I don’t know in what avenue I would succeed, but it would be interesting. If I knew I couldn’t fail, and it could be anything, I’d choose something like my ambition when I was a kid, and that was to be an astronaut.
In reality, failing is part of the learning process. No-one goes through life making all the right decisions, doing everything the right way the first time. Mistakes are made. It is how we respond to these mistakes and learn from them that moulds us as individuals. If you don’t make mistakes, you don’t learn.
If I had a year to live, what would I do with the time?
If I knew the exact date I was going to die, I would ensure that all loose ends are tied up. All my belongings are either sold, donated or gifted to others. My cremation all paid for, this domain and website funded for the next ten years (longer if my kids or Jane or whoever wanted to keep Random Fury going!), and any funds left over donated to an animal shelter or something. I would make sure that by the end I owned nothing, just as I did when I came into this world. All I’d leave behind is some cool art, hopefully a child or two, and this blog.
As for what I would do to fill the time? Probably travel the world, visit far away relatives, spend quality time with people I like.
When have I felt most alive?
I feel most alive when I am in physical pain. Smashing my nose against the study door a couple of years ago was incredible. I also feel most alive when walking home in the rain.
Does my reputation work for or against me?
Regarding my creativity, I think it goes both ways.
That I have no reputation means I am a blank slate, no-one has massive expectations. That I’ve not really pinned my style down yet is interesting too – I’m not known for doing anything in particular. Then again, a lack of reputation means I don’t really have any clout. No wangling better deals, more money or high profile clients. No-one seeks me out for jobs, no-one comes calling, looking for an art project to be completed.
It is swings and roundabouts.
What action can I take rather than worrying?
I rarely worry. Instead, I feel that I am not prepared. I add roadblocks to my progress instead of just doing the job required. Can’t write this blog post until I have scanned those pictures. Can’t carry on with this project until I carry out this trivial research. Is this another form of worrying?
For example: I have a notepad to the side of my keyboard, detailing to-do tasks, little jobs, blog post subjects or upcoming artistic endeavours. For a long time I have had an idea for a t-shirt design that I reckon would sell well to drunken chav types. “Research T-shirt tutorials” has been on there for months now – all it would take is an evening reading online guides and getting a bit more familiar with GIMP.
What am I prepared to give up in order to succeed?
I think I need to jettison a few elements of my life and concentrate on what I want to do.
Draw pictures. Pencils and paper. ArtRage, Sketchbook, Manga Studio. I recently got Poser 9 as part of an upgrade deal, so I’d love to try and do some little fight sequences or something. I got Anime Studio too, I’m sure I could do something with that. I want to make gameplay videos, commentaries, live-streams. Alone, with Lewis, with Jane. I have no idea how to, or if I will like doing them, or if I will be any good at it, but I want to at least try. And I am lucky enough to be in a position to be able to do that right now. Make RF bigger, badder and better.
I am well aware I have too much “stuff”, and am in the process of streamlining my life – again. I do this every so often. Accrue so many physical items that I feel the need to offload a percentage of them.
What would I sacrifice? I’m not sure.
What do I need to find out before I go any further?
From what I’ve said, I don’t need to find out anything. From now on I just have to go for it. Stop making excuses and inventing reasons and just do it.