I ended up having to drop some of the projects. It was just to much. It honestly made me feel very frustrated. You get that feeling of “Oh my God I am a failure cause I can't handle everything,” but at the same time it is a big relief. It means for one that it will be much easier to plan out my work without loosing sleep over how many things I can do at once.
I think with the convention and all the work I needed to do to get ready on top of all the money I ended up loosing in order to go I found myself between a rock and a hard place. All my finances for a month went to going to Baltimore Comic Con and that just wasn’t a very smart decision to make. In fact the entire time I was at the Con in the back of my head I did nothing but stress about how much I needed to get done at home and how I should have been working at that moment. Then with a hope and a prayer I was desperately wanting to make back the money I was spending to go and at the off chance that that might not happen I took on more work than I could handle hoping to make up for it after the convention was over.
Long story short, I got some big battle wounds as a result of my decisions over the last 3 months since finally getting back to drawing. But I know one thing this did was to seriously test my mental and physical limits in terms of what I just can and can’t do as an artist as well as how NOT to run a business no matter how much you want to succeed.
I am rethinking my approach to freelancing and recognizing a person just can not fill up every hour of there day. There are to many variables where things can go wrong. Not to mention having the time to eat and sleep and get sunshine on occasion. God bless the remained of my project with the home they go smoothly.
About to years ago I read a book called Autobiography of a yogi. The book was about the life of Paramhansa Yogananda, and Indian yogi that came to the US to bring the teachings of ancient wisdom of India and self realization through Christianity. He has written many books about living like Christ and being of Christ conscience, as well as, analyzing the teachings of Jesus and how they relate to model day lives of man.
My interest in the practice of Yoga began around 5 years ago now when I took a yoga class with some friends. The teacher was actually from Russia I believe and the class was very hard. At the end of the class there is a posture where you lay down on the floor after about an hour of intense work and the teacher walks around the room and he presses your shoulders down and lifts your head into alignment. Some teaches will even anoint your head with oil.
I remember the touch of this teacher. I had never been touched by such soft hands. And in an instant it felt like I was literally floating off the ground like I was not within myself. I had studied a few books on Tao and Yoga before this and read about yogis who float in the air and all these other strange things when I was in high school. All that stuff seemed so surreal.
But at this moment I don’t ever think I had felt so close to God. It was really an amazing spiritual experience. After the class ended and I came back to my senses I suddenly vowed that I would always practice yoga.
The next week I started attending Maya Yoga in downtown Kansas city. I remember be surrounded by vegans and vegetarians and I was on the Atkins diet. I had a few other spiritual experience but non like the first. My body was slowly be sculpted though in to the very agile body. After a while I ran into some financial problems I couldn’t go anymore but I bought books and practiced at home and them soon after that I went away to school.
Then while I was away in NJ and working at Mada Design I started occasionally getting audio books and listening to them. I was going not only through financial problems at the time but also through a purification process of some sort. It was so not voluntary lol. I found myself being tortured by my former experiences, many of them bad. These past memories suddenly flooded my life and I was having daily mental warfare with myself. Not to mention my external battles and coming to terms with the behaviors of others around me. Often I found myself near tears as I walked daily to and from work. I felt like I was under the greatest attack of my entire life. And then I found the audio book Autobiography of a Yogi.
This book helped me through one of the biggest mental hurdles I had gone through since high school. Like most teens high school was like the dark ages to me. I remember at one point asking my boyfriend if Satan really existed because I honestly felt like I was being attacked. (Satan has always been a little obscure to me cause I never really understood who or what Satan was but I do know what demons are.)
Anyway, I really enjoyed the Autobiography cause it was inspirational beyond belief. Because Yagananda lived between the 1920’s and like the 1960’s here in the US it was even more surreal. Actually there was a point when he came to Kansas City Missouri and he had a devotee here that he trained in Kriya Yoga and this man founded a church here that is called Self Realization fellowship http://kcmeditation.com/. I am thinking about attending a service to see what it is like.
I think it was one of the second branches founded here in the US; the first was founded by Yogananga on the west coast.
Some of the miracles described in the book are really otherworldly; especially his stories about meeting other modern day saints. It felt like a story that could only be told during biblical times. Even in my studies on Gandhi I find it strange to know that this man lived in my life time as well as martin Luther King.
The thing that brings all these thoughts of the eternal and human spirit was yesterday while working I was watching this video about a model day Buddha, Ram Bahadur Bomjan. He is saint from Nepal that is practicing something that I had heard about in the Autobiography. He plans to meditate for 10 years without eating or drinking. Him body is fueled purely by the spirit of god.
Before reading this book I was very skeptical of the idea that a man can live without polluting the body with food or drink. Then when I saw this I was really inspired cause I thought maybe these were things that did not happen in today’s time. He started meditating when he was I believe 11 and his goal is to meditate on the salvation of the world that we do not plunge into an even more desperate time of war and hatred. That man kind can ascend from the daily chaos and troubles of the world that we create and manifest from our own mind. To stop killing and eating meat so we can live on the fruits that God readily provides us.
This past summer I grew some of my own food and it was the most spiritual experience I had had in a long time. I remember feeling that is was nothing short of a miracle that anything could thrive on water and sun alone and I blessed and thanked my tomatoes as they grew and still grow in abundance. What a miracle it is to watch a small seedling grow into the monster that dominates my front porch and provides me with nourishment so I can live.
Anyway today is a blessed day. Give thanks for all things in your life whether good or bad even if only for the lessons they can teach.
I think one of the things many of us as artists forget is just how many resources we have at our disposal when it comes to drawing and financing Out career and life. The most important thing we do in this field is creating work that touches other peoples lives and nothing does that more than the art of caricature.
Peoples faces light up when they see themselves drawn as a cartoon. It makes them laugh and even sometimes makes them cry. I will never forget how when I worked at Worlds of Fun my first year a beautiful chunky chick sat in my chair and I made her look so cute. When she say the finish she got so happy and excited that she gave me the biggest hug. It really brightened her day.
Since that day I have had other experiences, good and bad, as well, but that one I always remember.
Yesterday I met with my amazing friend Tom. He is a caricature artist and also does many other forms of art, as well. It was such a blessing to get to spend a few hours with him talking about the state of the world and what it is we really provide as creators when our work is released into the hands of many others.
I need to get back to my roots and rediscover the blessing of caricature.
P.S. it can also provide ya with a good way to pay the bills too. lol!
Sometimes I feel like I ma in a constant battle to get ahead in life. It can be tiring I have to say.
I am currently swamped in work. One of the first times that has happened. The problem is that I don't get paid till the work is done so on top of that I have to try and sell stuff to pay bills till the work is done. I am still happy though, this will be the first time I have ever had this many professional jobs on my freelance plate so I know it is a blessing in disguise.
Current Projects include:
26 page comic book 50 sketch card for Moonstone Set(5finity) 80 sketch cards for Fairy Land Set (Sad Littles) 30 quick sketches (Baltimore fund raiser) 10 9 x 12 Painting commissions (from the last year or so)
Total I have about 200 illustrations and the are all due yesterday.
Just this past weekend I completed 50 sketch cards for Mandy card set (5finity) and I took a few days off after that to catch up on sleep. Last week when the BF visited I pulled allnighters every day up until a few days after he left. So I had to take a few days off when the Mandy cards got done. I had no choice I was exhausted.
I feel like a night time warrior. Attacking art when it's not looking. Stalking it and then praying upon it. Or you could also call me a working girl(art prostitute). Honestly it will be interesting to see if I can actually complete all this work.
I have deadlines up through January. After that I plan to take a little break and working on some personal projects.
I guess I am living up to the Drawlikecrazy name these days! :D