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Self Deprecation

Hello. First, I believe it would be best to address the elephant in the room; the lack of posts.

I feel it is vital that I apologise to my regular readership (google bot and auto redirects from other people’s blogs) for that lack of updates. I’ve been unable to draw, being that my iPad has gone and got itself sold, but that does not excuse my lack of regular posts.

Now, to the purpose of this post. I mentioned in a while ago that I spent a lot of time at school being told I was special, which I in turned believed, resulting in an acute case of lazy bastard. You may also remember that I was broken out of it this mindset when an old teacher actually called me out on it.

That’s the recap of the last episode complete.

Self deprecation has become a defence mechanism for my ego. If I become complacent in my abilities in any area, I stop trying. It’s worse than that in fact; I don’t stop trying in the purview of the subject to which I have become complacent, I stop altogether.

Allowing my super ego to dwell in a stronger foothold in my mind means that I’m less likely to become the lazy bastard that I was before. Becoming that person again is one of the few things that genuinely scares me.

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Many Apologies

This week has been hectic, busy, and eventful. However this is no excuse for the lack of post and I will work hard to ensure a new post is forthcoming.

Quick point of note however, I have recently reduced the number of tablet PC’s I have from 1 to 0. The upshot of this is that I have lost the ability to practice my drawing when convenient. This shall be remedied once I have finished moving home.

Talentless and Lazy.

Welcome one and all to another mildly disappointing edition of:

MY BLOG

This post has a short preface, just as a precautionary measure, to ensure that you’re prepared for the first paragraph. I am well aware that it may sound a little (extremely) arrogant, but I ask that you continue reading; eventually you’ll get to the really good self-deprecating parts.

Over the last number of years I have become painfully aware that, although I’ve spent many years being told by teachers and parents that I have a propensity for drawing and artwork, I am woefully unskilled in it’s implementation.

I have, therefore, decided that if I am to be a successful designer of games, then I should know how to hold a pencil in such a way that the pictures that come out don’t make children cry (or laugh, not sure which is worse).

My real problem is, I think, I spent too much time listening to people telling me that I could draw really well, and not enough time actually drawing. Apparently (at least according to the internet) one needs to practice skills in order to improve them beyond their current level. This is, unfortunately something  that I have neglected to do.

This is the latest in a long line of things I’m coming to realise I am rubbish at and need to fix. The use of the word “talented” by other people in describing my actions has deeply marred my actual level of skill in a multitude of areas; art, computer usage, 3D modelling, writing, foreplay, etc.

I very much doubt I would have ever grasped the concept that somehow I wasn’t as good as I thought I was if it wasn’t for a hate-filled, disenfranchised teacher exclaiming that I was “lazy and useless”. Those words, coming from a person I had no respect for shouldn’t really have had any affect on me; it would be like Mugabe telling me that I should be more open to competition. However, affect me they did.

So; as part of my attempt to learn how to draw I shall be attempting to post up one picture every few days (one a week at minimum). Most of them will likely be of my hand until I can draw one that doesn’t look like a car crashing into a sausage factory.

Without further distraction I present to you the abomination that is this weeks drawing.

Rubbish picture drawn with stylus on an iPad
An aesthetic study of my mangled, disgusting, grey hand.

Learning.

I both love and loathe learning.

I love it for the very simple reason that it gives me pleasure; no, don’t be weird. Learning to me is like sport is to everyone else; I learn a new skill or some new fact that I didn’t know before and it feels like I imagine it to feel if one was to score a goal-in-one at snooker.

The thrill of putting new skills to the test and finding out quite quickly that I enjoy this new task is where my ambivalence towards learning comes in. I imagine those of you that way inclined would call it a “meta-emotion” and then sit back, smoke your pipe, and feel happy with yourself. Either way, I hate loving to learn.

In way of explanation I’ve done a quick flow diagram for you. No, don’t thank me, it was my pleasure:

Why I never get very good at anything

As you can see I hand wrote this just for that personal touch.

Anyway. As we can plainly see in this incredible diagram, I start out learning a new skill, learning more of it, before finally going bat shit crazy and substituting every activity for this new one (including but not limited to: Sleeping, Eating, Breathing, Farting, Cavorting, Standing, and Videogaming).

Then I get bored and go find something else to do, although the step between boredom and finding something else can take up to a few months.

“This is fine” I hear you yell, spraying toast crumbs and bits of half chewed Marmite all over you filthy monitors, “you get a new skill, and you enjoy doing it; you make me sick. Where are my hitting pants? This man needs a thrashing only I can deliver!”

Well, yes. I have fun. But, you judgemental pricks, if you look closer at the diagram I’ve included a red asterisk (or if you’re colour blind, a grey one). This asterisk allows me to refer to my skill level at that particular point in the cycle. Follow me to a superfluous bullet point list:

oh, you made it.

  • Amazingly perfectly brilliant  <———–This is where I think I am
  • perfect
  • amazing
  • brilliant
  • great
  • good
  • all-right <———–This is where I get to
  • okay
  • meh
  • not that good
  • bad

As you can see, the asterisk denotes a large deficit of perceived skill on my part. This being a mistake I make every damn time. I learn something new, for example, squirrel wrestling, I do nothing but wrestle squirrels for damn near a month. I live to wrestle those squeaky bastards. Then it gets boring and I stop, thinking “Well, if nothing else, at least I’m now a damned good squirrel wrestling sonofabitch”. Then to my dismay, when I check all the squirrel wrestling newspapers, it seems that I’m only just of amateur status; I probably wouldn’t even be able to wrestle squirrels at the local wrestle off! (we call it the nutcracker)

This makes me sad, and what’s more, I have no inclination to even attempt to get any better because the whole concept of squirrel wrestling now bores me.

The whole cycle ends with me feeling somehow like I’m worse than I was before I started. Before I could say: “No, I don’t squirrel wrestle”. Where as afterwards I have to say “I’m all right I guess”. Which isn’t  an improvement.

This time though is going to be different; I’ve learnt how to make things in flash and I’m so good I can make buttons and everything. I’ve done nothing but practice for the last 3 weeks and I’m really enjoying it!

Oh… Wait…. bored. Damn.

EDIT:
Turns out, ladies and gentlemen, that I am incapable of spelling. I have rectified this by signing up to an 18 month long correspondence course. The first practical involved letters a through b!