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» AnimationNation   » General Discussion   » Finding yourself in a NYC Gutter?

Author Topic: Finding yourself in a NYC Gutter?
Member # 3474

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Alannis   Email Alannis         Edit/Delete Post 
Hey everyone,

me and my friend john aka "mclovin" were discussing artistic dry spells, also refered to as slumps, burnt out, etc.

I was telling him I was at a state where seeing all the art that is out there, it made me feel caloused and driven off my path.

I know these are spells which are broken at an instant of inspiration, but I wanna ask you guys how do you cope when you're "in the gutter"?

What gets you back on track?

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IE # 14
Member # 1864

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Ganklin   Author's Homepage   Email Ganklin         Edit/Delete Post 
listen you're in NYC? go to MOMA and just look at EVERYTHING there. even the crap that you hate.

go to central park and start doodling people (i know its been crazy windy and cold) and just let loose with it. go look at the tree in rockerfeller center and stare at the tourists. sketch them. who cares what it looks like.

try to just draw from life. do a still-life or maybe find a figure drawing class.

go check out some films you wouldn't normally see.

go do ANYTHING you normally wouldn't do. just doodle and don't pressure yourself. you'll eventually find your way back, and hopefully learn something new.


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Member # 7

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Charles           Edit/Delete Post 
Good advice. Get drunk, go see an inspiring movie, take a break, have a good time, don't worry about it.


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Member # 873

Icon 1 posted      Profile for OFFBEAT   Author's Homepage   Email OFFBEAT         Edit/Delete Post 
It's easy to get lost, and the two cents i'm about to drop on the table, might just roll to the ground.. but here it goes..

They call it "The Zone" .. that area where you can work 16 hours non-stop.. you have total focus.. you have total drive and energy. If God were to appear next to you, you'd say "Not now Lord.. i'm busy. Take a hike."

If you've had it before, you know what i'm talking about.

If you've never been in it. Congratulations, chances are, you don't have what it takes to be an artist, and can move onto a more meaningful and financially rewarding career.. such as pumping gas unclogging toilets, or legal billing.

Now.. getting into 'the zone' is different for everyone, because our motivations are subjective to our own personal drives.

They say that we are motivated to do things from either pain, or pleasure. I.E. The pleasure you'll get from doing a painting for a loved one, or the pain of losing a job because you didn't meet a deadline. Humans always seek pleasure above pain.. if something is more painful to do than the pleasure it rewards, we simply do not do it.

Money is a big incentive... because it can bring pleasure or pain. It'll be painful if you can't make your rent this month and have to live in your car or on the street.. but having the money to pay all your bills, take all your friends to dinner and enough left over to buy guitar hero 3 is bitch'n.

You have to try and remember the state of mind you were in when you were in the zone, and try to re-create it.. if you were thinking.. "..once the world sees this.. fame and fortune will be mine!!" Try to manufacture that again.

Imagine where you want to be.. if it's famous.. world re-known.. on the cover of Juxtapoz magazine.. or wealthy.. doing laps with a jet ski in your indoor pool.
..and try to use that as an incentive.

or skip the superficial stuff.. and imagine the painting, or project finished.. or series of projects in ever detail before you put pencil to paper.

It's easier to hit a target when you know where (what) it is.

Otherwise you're just shooting arrows blindfolded.. frustrated by not knowing if you are hitting anything.

If your goal is "Get into animation studio." Your path is very simple.
Prepare a portfolio that is good enough for them to hire you. Try, try again. Nobody fails more than a successful person.
It's that simple.

Actually.. i'm going to update that "Try, try again" phrase. Because, to a lot of you, that means try twice, and give up. So, "TRY INFINITY."

Unless trying is more painful than pleasurable.. that's when you know when to quit. If trying to turn something you love into a profession is painful.. then nothing wrong with doing it as a hobby. That's where the word "amateur" comes from. It means "for the love of."

But if you want to turn it into a career, then you're going to have to be prepared to do what it takes to get in.. there's a lot of competition, and if they all draw 3-4 hours a day on their days off. Instead of watching television, or playing video games.. they are drawing. Constantly challenging themselves.. learning how to draw, paint, the things they cannot before.. It's their life, and their hobby.
..and that's what it takes.

If your goal is to "be a successful artist"
You'll know when you made it, when people are buying your work before you make it. Your phone will be off the hook.

If no one is buying.. then obviously you're not a successful artist.

Doesn't matter how many compliments anyone gives you.. if there's no exchange of money.. then you're not there yet. Unless your landlord starts accepting compliments.
It's that simple.

Every opposition, or "yeah, buuut... " you have to that, are just self placed obstacles that EVERYONE faces, and those who succeed have overcome.

Everytime I say this.. someone brings up a famous painter who starved to death, and became famous after his death.
If you want to be that guy.. have at it! I'd rather get paid for my artwork now, and have people think I worked at Trader Joe's after I died.

Take it or leave it.. It's just my 2 cents. I'm not the authority.

"Get Rich, or Die Drawing!"

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Member # 1024

Icon 1 posted      Profile for bigshot   Email bigshot         Edit/Delete Post 
An old animator once told me that when his inspiration dried up, he'd switch to mechanical tasks like organizing, numbering his drawings and working on his x sheets. After a while, he'd get bored and itch to draw again.

See ya

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Member # 3474

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Alannis   Email Alannis         Edit/Delete Post 
Thanks to everyone for their suggestions and offbeat I appreciate your extra input.

I have been in the zone many times before, and thats why it's hard when Im away from home. Its never been clearer to me that what im doing now is what has to be done, and that it chose me, not the other way around.

You know, just seeing the many blogs out there and talking to my teachers and seeing their work gives me an idea of the greatness out there, but im not afraid. In fact i am stimulated when other people show their great work to me. I get very competitive.

I have attempted the "recreation of state" but maybe I'm doin' something wrong cause I havent gotten in it succesfully. Sounds like you know a little NLP(neurolinguistic programing)?

I found a solution to my dilema, and that is hand-drawn animation. Yesterday my character design teacher simply told me relax and not worry about the whole situation and so I did. I went home that night and i picked up some paper and began animatin'. When i really focus on the drawings, its as if a whole world of motion unlocks and there's an orgy of ideas. For some reason when I animate on paper it always gets me in the zone.

Thanks Professor.

Does anybody else experience this when animating the old fashioned way?

Thanks for input guys keep em, coming

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IE # 193
Member # 1575

Icon 1 posted      Profile for dermot   Author's Homepage   Email dermot         Edit/Delete Post 
nice Offbeat !

Just change the 2 cents to pebbles and see if Grasshopper can grab them !

Grasshopper just had to want them bad enough....and then he found out they were only pebbles .



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IE # 39
Member # 873

Icon 1 posted      Profile for OFFBEAT   Author's Homepage   Email OFFBEAT         Edit/Delete Post 
I enjoy hiking. Except for whenever I find out how far the trail is before hand.

If I find out the trail i'm going on is 10 miles.. I think .. Oh great! I'll be sore on Monday.. It's all uphill? Oh Sheesh! Stock up on the advil!! That'll take me 6 hours at least! You know what? nevermind! ...Then I procrastinate by doing something else less painful... like watching TV.

Or if I see it.. one time a friend pointed to a mountain and said "We're going to the top."
I piss and moan the whole way there.. and back. I was sore for a week. I didn't hike again for months.

The absolute best hike i've ever been on.. was when I set out not knowing how far the trail was. I just enjoyed the trail.. it was mostly uphill.. I saw a mountain lion at a distance, I swam in a pond at the bottom of a waterfall. Crapped myself when a rattlesnake crossed my path. Saw a bright purple and yellow bird... something I haven't seen since, Explored the entrance to an abandoned mine shaft. I had a Great time!

At the end, I asked another hiker.. how far was that? 24 miles? huh. It sure didn't feel like it.

I notice that most obstacles in life are like that. If you look at them as mountains rather than paths.

If you're worried about becoming a great artist, there's an awesome book I recommend called "Mastery" It was written for/about martial arts.. but applies to everything.

"Get Rich, or Die Drawing!"

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IE # 101
Member # 17

Icon 1 posted      Profile for SNAKEBITE   Author's Homepage           Edit/Delete Post 
Pablo Coehlo said there are two types of people. those who walk with their head down, only concerned with their immediate troubles and those who walk looking to the horizon, always aware of the blessings around them.


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