The last couple months of silence from my blog has been a busy and overwhelming time. I took on more than I could handle between Inktober, two comic projects, and a children's book. However, I learned a lot that will be helpful going forward. I started meditating on the need to focus and having a single priority. Along with focus and priority, I was analyzing my personality quirks in order to figure out how to use them to my advantage for productivity and storytelling. Some of that reflection may have been procrastination, but it ended up being useful.
As a self-diagnosed perfectionist, I realized I was caught up in trying to achieve an unrealistic expectation in my comics. My writing and drawing skills weren’t in alignment with the vision I had for my stories, and I needed to get over that. I spent so much time on revision and shifting from project to project, making marginal progress. It all lead up to me recognizing the fact that I just needed to finish something. As artists, we’ll always be working towards improving our craft. After hearing similar messages on some of my favorite podcasts and YouTube channels, I adopted the phrase "Finished Not Perfect" (recently made popular by Jake Parker, an illustrator whose art and work ethic I admire greatly) and started writing it on my daily to-do list. It’s been a good reminder to help me focus on achieving smaller, attainable goals towards a larger project.
After refocusing my efforts towards a single project, I decided to reevaluate why I want to make comics, what kind of stories I want to tell, and how my experiences (and those of people around me) might be incorporated into an entertaining story. I also took advantage of the opportunity to get more involved in the local comic book community by going to the Akron ComicCon last month. I met a lot of indie comic creators, was invited to join some online comics communities, and was exposed to a lot of cool indie comics.
Prior to writing this blog post, I was so stuck that I wrote several posts, scrapping each one because I kept wanting to write a perfectly crafted blog post. Going forward, I’m going to focus on creating my comic and documenting my process, rather than striving for perfection with every project I take on. Sometimes it feels like I’m never going to get anywhere, but I need to allow myself to fail and make imperfect work, as we all should.