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August 28, 1993
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I think I've found a really good way out of my mess, for the 100th time but this time I know with absolute certainty that I'm really on to something.
Step 1: Plan out what you are going to do in advance (for example write down 2 or 3 things I will do tomorrow before I go to bed is my idea) Step 2: Envision your ambition (e.g. how good you want your artwork to look or how good you want your body to look) and allow yourself to get excited over it. Step 3: Focus on how you feel or how you want to feel about this, and how you want to feel in general (For me the emotions I decided to go with (for now) are 2 variations on love and a sense of responsibility) Step 4: Envision the 'pain' you will have to go through to work towards your ambitions Step 5: Execute
The order of these things might be a bit jumbled up but let me just outline what the steps involve in the order which I feel makes most sense to explain them
Step 2: Ambition
In my last journal I was distressed over how I couldn't awaken any ambition within me. I knew I could do it for video game context (like building OP as fuck armor in Skyrim) but not to draw. Then this morning I realized... That I had actually had such an ambition for drawing before, I just let it fade away, I didn't hold on to it hard enough! And that was the time period where I was drawing every day for about 2 months. Throughout this time I had a rather clear idea of what I wanted my artwork to eventually look like, this drove me forward when I was feeling unmotivated. But nearing the end there I lost sight of this ambition.
The trick to these ambitions is to just see them in their most glorified form, get excited about them, and don't think it any further!This is a dream, your dream, dreams don't need to be realistic, you don't need or want to have a reason for having these dreams, you don't need or want to know what you're gonna do after you've made your dreams come true. Just focus on the dream, forget about everything that comes before or after it. As soon as I started thinking about 'how' or 'why' I wanted to get it, it started to fade away from ambition to goal, and goals just aren't strong enough to motivate you, only ambitions are. Only dreams are.
Let them be dreams, they don't have to be realistic, and as soon as you try to make them realistic they will no longer be dreams. What happens to a kid who dreams of being superman once he starts to think about how to become superman? He loses the dream because he learns that it's not possible to achieve. Don't stop dreaming.
Step 3: Feelings
This is only necessary for me because I'm feeling emotionally desensitized and apathetic in general today. I want to change that. Emotions are your driving force, it's what drives you to act in the ways that you do day to day. How you generally feel describes you. I feel nothing, so I do nothing, I used to feel sad, I contemplated suicide, I used to feel angry and hateful, I thought about violence and murder and sometimes incited violence too. These were my day to day feelings and thoughts, so it actually changes a lot about how you act in general to change how you feel in general. All change starts at emotion I'd argue.
Choose your feelings wisely. Some feelings like anger and hate are a stronger driving force than others and give you more energy; but at what cost? I'm lucky enough to know what love feels like (and I don't mean the insanity people usually call love, no I mean the real deal). This feeling was a gift from someone who knew I needed it because I had never experienced it. You probably wouldn't believe me if I told you where I got it so let's leave it at that, but I am eternally grateful for it even if it took me quite a few years to actually understand it.
I chose to feel love, and the desire to feel loved, and I also chose a sense of responsibility because I have put some burdens on my shoulders, some things I blame myself for and I want to make it right. I think this set of emotions is the right for me, these are the things that I want to drive me. At least I couldn't think of any better ones.
Step 1 & 4: The Plan and the Pain
This is a two part step. I've been looking for close to a decade now for a method to turn my poor situation into a good situation and never did I realize that the answer was staring me right in the face. Turn my addictions into a blessing instead of a curse. Up till now my method or ideology has been to try to erase my current addictions and make the things I would rather do my new addictions (things like drawing and working out for example) but I realize now the fatal flaw in that, I cannot let go of games and I cannot let go of anime, because I love both too much, they matter too much to me, they're a vital part of my identity (especially games) and my two favorite forms of easy entertainment and instant gratification.
But the thing about goals and achieving them is that you need to be properly trained for/used to delayed gratification in order to succeed in the long term. I'm sure we've all heard a thousand times about how you're supposed to reward yourself after you do something good like working out, but this is a shallow explanation of delayed gratification. (This is a better one) What I just figured out is that rewards like ice cream or good food are shallow for me, shallow because as much as I like them, I'm gonna do my best to get them anyways if I really want them, and they only provide very brief gratification, and not as much of it as anime and video games do for me.
So it's been staring me in the face this whole time. The reward I should be giving myself for doing the right things are anime and video games in fact in the past I've already had limited success with similar methods! (For example, no internet until after I draw. I always drew.)
So the plan is top plan for the rewards you'll be getting and what the things oyu're gonna do are (for example for me it would be work out and draw probably)
The pain is to envision yourself feeling both the pain of doing the work, walking the walk essentially (the pain of working out or the trials of drawing a picture) but something that is usually forgotten in the 'journey not the destination' explanations is that you are also supposed to envision the pain of Wanting but NOT giving yourself your rewards while you are going through these pains. So for example there will be days when I'm drawing and I'm just really not in the mood, so I just wanna quit and go watch some anime or some shit. This is an extra level of pain while I'm drawing and if I'm not ready for it I'm likelier to fail.
Step 5: Execute
After doing all of the above, do all the things you planned to do and stay away from your rewards until you've finished all your plans. Simple but certainly not easy.
This is sort of an overview of my overall plans and it doesn't include all the details of it (like sustainability, the importance of 'just starting' and how it's more important to prepare for 'the pain' than the ambition, the ambition is only supposed to help you through the pain, the pain is really what you're getting today, the ambition is only a mirage that helps you sleep at night knowing that you'll eventually get there. The lie is that 'maybe today I will achieve the ambition! ' which of course usually doesn't happen and when it actually does, you probably didn't even notice it or you have a new and higher ambition ready to take it's place already.
That all said I'm just writing this so I don't forget any of it when the time comes to start because the time has not yet arrived. No matter what my drawing situation is, the latest I'll start working out will be 1st december, and the latest I'll start eating healthier is 1st january, but the latest I'll start drawing again is actually all the way into february.
You see because there's another nuance to my plans and that is don't expect too much of yourself. It's a lot easier to develop one habit per month than to develop 3 habits all at once, gradual changes instead of sudden ones which goes back to the patience I learned earlier this year is absolutely vital to success very zen. You need to optimize your levels of effort in order to gain maximum sustainability without growing lazy or burning yourself out. And in the beginning this is gonna be very little effort but over time it'll increase as habits you build one at a time will become 'easy' and not requiring mental effort, aka you can do them on autopilot without even thinking.
The first year or so of success is always gonna be the hardest, then every successive year will just get easier and easier as you already built your habits and any new habits you need you can just add whenever you need them with ease.
I have a lot of tricks up my sleeve, but I have to give this James Clear guy some credit, he's clearly been facing the same sorts of problems as me but he's just been more diligent in his research of them than me so he's made more comprehensive 'articles' about them than I have made less comprehensive DA journals about them.
The reason btw why I'm exercising and eating healthy before I draw is because I'm getting scared of my health, I've become obese, I'm not far from growing a second chin at this point, and I don't want to deal with all the obesity related diseases by the time I'm 30, hell no! So even if drawing is much more important to me than my physical health, there are limits. And I'm rapidly approaching these limits.
So it's gonna take me a while to start drawing again, really longer than I'd like, but I only said that the latest point possible is february. I may actually start as early as december, you never know, but I'm gonna give myself the time I need instead of rushing this time.
The next few days will go into calmly gathering more information and further planning this all out, it all starts 1st december. As much as I want to just get this over with, patience is a necessary virtue which I've lacked up till this point in my life. I do not feel a dire need to rush right now (even if I should feel it now more than at any point before, for a couple of reasons) and this is a very good sing.
Well, we'll see where this takes me this time, about 4 days ago I almost wrote a journal about an imminent revival. I was predicting this very day where a plan would form and that it would be executed by december 1st. I could feel it already 4 days ago I just first had all the essential pieces for it today
Now listen to the song I'm listening to, I grew up with the guys in this band (sorta, they were my underclassmen in school once, they were already playing back then when they were like 13!) good stuff pretty proud of them, good old fashioned rock is so hard to find these days (well I say good old and I mean like acdc/g'n'r old, not animals/creedence clearwater old). Also liked these songs if you want more.
Rather than making new journals I'll probably just make comments about my progress on this journal. If you're interested in seeing how things go then go ahead and check it around December. Despite saying what I said about prioritizing my body, it's very possible that I will try to squeeze in art as well. If I do, I guess you'll see uploads again finally
Don't let appearances fool you, when I'm not at a metal concert, I'm calm and composed like a Tibetan monk. That picture just feels so right, since I've rarely had as much fun in my life as when I was at Eistnaflug in this specific picture I was still wearing my spur-of-the moment Krauser II facepaint
I started trying to draw in February 2014 , and sadly it's been a bumpy road, but one worth traversing even if I've been at a snailing kind of pace. I feel that the toughest part is rapidly falling behind me and the fun part is taking the wheel now.
Hopefully I'll be a great artist one day
Also, artist's block? Run out of ideas? Hell will freeze over before I run out of things to draw, and even if I run out of epic original ideas I can always fallback to drawing something randomly gory or sexy instead!
Favorite visual artistElsevillaFavorite moviesLove Exposure, Berserk, Hells (Anime), The Front-Line (Go Ji Jeon)Favorite TV showsCode Geass, Re:Zero, Hellsing Ultimate, Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood, Detroit Metal City... (list goes on!)Favorite bands / musical artistsEmilie Autumn, Dir En Grey, Lamb of God, Dillinger Escape Plan, Kaijura Yuki... (Too many to count)Favorite booksSun-Ken Rock, Berserk, Murcielago, The Asylum for Wayward Victorian Girls...Favorite writersBoichi, Tolkien, Kentaro Miura, Yoshimura KanaFavorite gamesWizardry 8, Morrowind, Final Fantasy 7, Dark Souls, EverQuest ... (yeah there's just too many, I'm sorry)Favorite gaming platformPC (Linux gaming banzai!)Tools of the TradeArch Linux, Krita, Yiynova MVP22U+ (RH)Other InterestsProgramming, Music, Science & Technology, Building robot armies, World domination, Mind Control, the usual...