Hey hey out there in the deviantsphere, it's that time once again...the end of the year, where we (often) take the time to reflect on what has happened over the year and what we would like to see happen in the next. Hard to believe that we are indeed approaching the end of 2014...but then, that is always the way.
It's a mild day today...I should be enjoying the weather but instead I sit inside, enjoying my music and thinking about having an art night. Why not? Hmm...maybe I should make some cake too...
Since my last entry, much has happened...in particular, a two week trip to JAPAN. This trip was my first time overseas, and I went by myself to boot...and I damn well loved it. I threw myself into a world completely different to my own, and spent a good proportion of time wandering the country's streets with only a rough idea of what I wanted to see. I did not know the language, which made communication quite a challenge and any TV viewing and choice of meals very interesting, but it was a great experience all the same. I met cool people, consumed amazing food and beverages (the sweets! The vending machines! MATCHA FLAVOURED EVERYTHING! AHHHH!) and spent a good portion of time getting lost. I wrote copious notes and continued to draw every day, mostly on the public transport I frequented. My intention is to compile all my notes and pictures into something a little more chronological.
By far the most frustrating thing about my trip was the fact I lost my camera on the flight from Tokyo to Sydney, and I didn't realise until I had gone beyond the point of no return and couldn't go back to the plane to check. I still haven't received anything indicating my camera has been found, which is heartbreaking. If anyone didn't see it, I made a comic in an appeal to find it:
Still, some of the people I met sent me photos of our time spent together across the trip (I know they probably won't see this, but thanks guys!) and as I said I do still have my sketches and notes, so it's not like I don't have any documentation. Plus I have everything I felt and experienced in my head, so it's not all bad.
I'd still like my camera back though...my SD card with all 3000-odd photos on it, at the very least.
Admittedly, it was very hard readjusting to so-called 'normal' life - probably not helped by hitting the ground running with work and
family commitments. I was quite disorientated for a good week or two, and it took longer to shrug off the subsequent depression. I had not wanted to leave Japan. But as I readjusted things got better. I went to Supanova for one, and that was pretty cool. With no camera I spent more time taking everything in, and even drew while enjoying various panels and seminars. One of the highlights of this was when I saw Torri Higginson (aka Elizabeth Weir from Stargate: Atlantis) to get her signature and thought I'd show her my little doodle of her. SHE TOOK A PHOTO OF IT. AHHH.
And then...then she put it on Instagram. instagram.com/p/vumjN9tqsp/?mo…
That aside, I also got a signature from Alan Tudyk (aka Wash from Firefly/Serenity) and enjoyed his panel as well as those of Peter Cullen, Bryce Papenbrook and Trina Nishimura, Austin St John and Walter Jones, Jamie Bamber and Tahmoh Penikett, and James and Oliver Phelps (gold stars to anyone who knows what all these people are in...without looking up Wikipedia!
). These panels, along with some helpful seminars, catching up with friends and wandering around enjoying the sights, made it a pretty decent weekend overall. Of course, the ritual pancakes and pie floater at the end of Saturday and Sunday respectively also helped.
Another event I enjoyed was the Studio Ghibli Showcase, presented by the Palace Nova. When it comes to anime Ghibli is not something I have really explored, so this was a good place to start. I watched the films My Neighbour Totoro, The Tale of Princess Kaguya, The Wind Rises and Grave of the Fireflies, as well as two documentaries: The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness, and Isao Takahata and his Princess Kaguya. I enjoyed them all thoroughly, though The Wind Rises didn't make as much an impact on me as Princess Kaguya. But each film was definitely worth watching.
I said at the end of last year that I wanted to make 2014 awesome, and I think I achieved that to some extent. I realised a longtime dream of mine by going to Japan and defied people's expectations by going there on my own - something similarly achieved by driving across the country to Wagga Wagga solo. I gained a bit more confidence in my abilities as an artist, both visually and as a writer. I pushed myself more at my current workplace and have, as a result, accepted a more inclusive and responsible role there next year. While not many 'finished pieces' were completed, what I did manage I found to be pieces to be proud of, not only in their final incarnation but in the satisfaction of their new owners. I have two drafts for a long-term project of mine completed at different stages, and am ready to write the third (and most likely final) of these parts. Really, that's a lot in one year. I think I'm more confident overall as a result of all the things I have achieved - my friends have noted that I have certainly changed
over this past year, and for the better.
My 'Year of Awesome' will not end with the new year (my birthday is in February), but I can still describe 2014 in such a way. Of course, there have been ups and downs, but that is always the way. You just gotta keep on moving, and that's what I do best...just going with the flow.
2015, I already know, is going to be full on, but if I can push myself through it I also know I will make some tremendous achievements as a result. Balance will be key, certainly (something I have consistently struggled with but am continuing to improve in), but my motto, I think, will be 'Work Hard and Play Hard'. I need to remember to enjoy myself, above all, or everything's just going to fall to pieces.
After all, what's life without a whole lot of fun?
All right, that is more than enough from me. I hope you all enjoy the holiday season, and that 2015 is a whole heap of awesomeness for you. I leave you with my standout musical obsessions of the year: Crosses, Deftones and Depeche Mode. They're all amazing bands, and I have thoroughly enjoyed going through Deftones and Depeche Mode's respective discographies in more depth. For those who haven't read my previous entries, here's a bit of a taste of each one:
Depeche Mode: www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZbsQ0g…
Enjoy, and take care!