Hey guys, I hope you're all doing well! Sorry for the inactivity for the past...well, it's been a very long time now (seems like all I do on here is apologize for inactivity, smh). I figured I should be honest this time about why I'm not around and explain some things while it's on my mind instead of waiting until like September to publish a yearly update, lol. I've been bogged down with schoolwork and some very stressful situations in real life; to cut it short, let's just say certain parts of my life are in a weird and messy place right now and have been for quite some time. Because of this, my time spent online has been limited in general, save for a couple of things in particular I make time for when I have some downtime. I've also been primarily focusing on other types of art besides digital art and original characters, and this isn't likely to change soon. I would love to show you guys my more recent work, but truth be told, the dA community doesn't feel like the right place for me to be right now, so I will most likely not publish it here. There are a couple of main reasons that I feel this way:
First of all, I am reaching a place where I will soon have to choose whether I want to pursue a serious career in art or just continue doing it as a hobby. As anyone who has ever considered an art career knows, portfolio building is beyond essential! You need a portfolio to show to potential employers and clients, anyone offering college scholarships/other benefits, and, well, anyone at all really who wants to view your work in a more professional-looking format than "You wanna see my art? Okay, I've got some recent pics on my phone." I personally feel that dA is not an appropriate format for serious portfolio-building, at least not for any of the types of work I'm considering. The environment feels too casual and the community-based format, while being great for a lot of reasons, just isn't what I'm looking for right now nor what most employers in the fields I'm considering would be interested in seeing. As for the work that I do publish here, it is a.) Strictly a hobby for me, as I mentioned in a previous journal. I love my characters to death but for the most part there is no overlap between them and my more "serious" work. and b.) Mostly very old/dated and not representative of my current abilities, both technical skill-wise and conceptually. You may be wondering, why not make a second account for my more serious work so you guys can see it/to gain more exposure/just for fun? This is something I've considered for a long time, but for now my answer is no. I just don't trust the community enough to not end up having my ideas and work copied/stolen, and honestly I feel like some of the concepts I've come up with over the past year or so are unique enough that I want to be very careful where they're published (especially anything from my AP art class during my senior year of high school, since that class pushed me to think outside the box with art more than ever before). I know I'm far from being "popular" here and don't have many followers to begin with (btw, those of you who do remember me and check in on me when I'm around, thank you so much, it means a lot!), but what I do have is enough anxiety to be constantly worried about it anyway. Also, for other reasons that I'm not quite sure how to put into words, I just wouldn't be entirely comfortable with it. I'd love for you guys to see my work, I really would since I'm very proud of a lot of it, but if it is ever published online it won't be here (though if I do publish it elsewhere someday I promise to let my small, loyal group of followers here know where to find me).
Secondly, certain circles on here that I loosely follow have been involved in some nasty drama. Sometimes it's because other people are rude and drag people who did nothing wrong down with them. Other times it's because certain circles try way too hard to be "special and exclusive" when we should all just be a happy community and enjoy art together. Drama makes me uncomfortable, whether it's irl or online, and I would rather not end up getting too heavily involved. Besides giving the artists I look up to my support and being there for anyone who needs a shoulder to lean on, I try to just stay out of it for the most part. I'm kind of trying to distance myself from negativity as a whole right now because of some negative things going on in my personal life, so for the most part it's better that I watch from the sidelines or don't follow it all so closely at all. Also, I'm 19 years old which is way too old to be picking sides in kiddie fights, especially involving petty drama within certain dA Groups that I'm not even a member of to begin with but just casually follow because I enjoy the art (note: that last part does not apply to everyone who is dealing with drama right now; there are also a lot of more serious issues going on in the community, i.e. art theft/tracing, artists dealing with unwarranted harassment for a large variety of reasons, and more. If you are being affected by something more serious, just know I have your back and am here if you need someone to talk to).
I feel really bad that I haven't kept in touch with certain people better (hopefully you all know who you are). I'm quickly finding out that I'm not so great in keeping in touch with old friends in general, sadly. If we haven't talked in a while, it's completely on me and nothing you did, I promise <3 If you wanna keep in touch, send me a Note and I will try to keep you a little more up-to-date with what I've been up to. I would be happy to find out what's been going on with your lives as well
As for the future of this account? I'll be around, but don't expect things to change too drastically in the near future. Chances are that for the time being, I'll continue dropping in every few months or so to catch up on some things here and there. As for new art, the soonest to expect anything is maybe this summer (mostly because I left my tablet at home over the recent spring break and have nothing to do digital art with and also because RIP spare time). It'll depend on how much free time I have and whether I gain back some more interest than what I currently have in digital art/working on original characters, but I would eventually like to expand upon what little I have to show here, build my characters and their lore, etc. I'm too attached to it all to just let it sit around in my head and not do anything. I can't guarantee anything at this time though because I already know I'll have a lot of responsibilities to take care of this summer, certain things that I really need to accomplish in order to get to where I need to be in life right now and reach a better place both in terms of getting to where I should be for my age/status/short-term life goals and regarding my mental and emotional health.
If you've made it this far through my 3 AM ramblings, thank you, I really mean it. Hope this was able to clear some things up!