work

Cohesion

Posted in health, work on March 3rd, 2019 by Jin Wicked – Comments Off on Cohesion

My evaluation with the ADHD specialist is coming next week. I am hopeful for that. Two weeks ago I scrubbed my bathroom from top to bottom, and threw out a large trash bag of old makeup and other products, and put all my “daily use” makeup together in a box to keep it clean and neat. It is a chicken-and-egg scenario — but I cannot tell whether I am happier because of the clutter, garbage, and superfluous stuff I am throwing out, or whether I am throwing these things out because I am happier. Of course, it does not really matter.

I am not sure how I still have anything left after two years of purging!

I took photographs of my office, the last “disaster” I am fighting to overcome, for the specialist and/or therapist. I have tried many, many times to organize my office, but every time I succeeded, the room spirals back to “piles of paper everywhere” state very quickly. I sincerely suspect this is contributing to the productivity issues — like the noise issues I mentioned before, the mess feels incredibly suffocating and overstimulating. In my reading about ADHD recently I ran across something called the Touch-It-Once Rule, so I have been slowly rewiring my habits to incorporate that behaviour. I am also utilizing a timer to spend about thirty minutes per day sorting papers, and discarding everything that is trash or that I can bear to part with. I have been sketching at my day job in quiet moments and on breaks without any “fidgety” problems.

Last night I sat down with several spiral notebooks that I hand-write scripts and ideas into, taking stock of my entire body of work, and engaging in some “big picture” thinking. The comics feel more manageable laid out this way.

1. Crap I Drew on My Lunch Break – webcomic, book/minis, almost complete
2. A Dollar Late and A Day Short – webcomic, book/mini, almost complete
3. Have Tablet, Will Scribble – webcomic, minis only, ongoing
4. Queen of Assholes – webcomic, TPBs/volumes, ongoing
5. The Book of Al – webcomic, single book, one-shot
6. TBA sketchbook project – poetry/prose, single book, one-shot
7. TBA sketchbook project – comics/drawing, single book, one-shot

Projects number six and seven are unique, in that I want to execute them in a “sketchbook” style. I aim to work on them exclusively outside my office until I reach the publishing stage. I like that an overall theme has emerged among all of my primary projects, including the TBA ones — an exploration of change, growth, connectedness, what it means to be human, and the impermanence of life. Thirty-nine years upon this planet have lead me to this moment, in this place, at this time, but it was my new day job at the beginning of 2019 that has finally sparked the “why.” My days are filled with art, books, and hard but fulfilling work — and making people laugh, smile, or think. I have rarely been poorer, owned less crap, and never felt more whole. I am grateful.

I have had several people lately express their preference to support my work without using Patreon, and over the next few weeks and months, I am going to be shifting focus to my general support page rather than Patreon. At the same time, I have been quite happy with Patreon, myself, and I want to find new ways to value-add for my supporters there in the future. Patreon is still my preferred method of support, as it is very easy for me to manage, much in the way Etsy helps with the store-side of things. But there are options.

This weekend I am preparing my presentation for the school children I will be speaking to soon! If that goes well, I should have some photographs and/or video, along with a trip report, for you later in the week.

[VIDEO BLOG] SNOWMAGEDDON

Posted in video, work on January 28th, 2019 by Jin Wicked – Comments Off on [VIDEO BLOG] SNOWMAGEDDON

Dawn is complete and 2019 is off to a FANTASTIC start!

Support me at Patreon
http://patreon.com/jinwicked

A Samsung Galaxy tablet donated to MN Pocket Pet Rescue. I am hopeful and enthusiastic for the opportunity to volunteer with their organization engaging in local community outreach, and education about rats as pets.

MN Pocket Pet Rescue

If you have ever wondered why it takes me weeks, months, or even years to finish anything, the image below is the main reason why. I could easily have done a dozen or more revisions of this piece if I did not force myself to stop. What should have been a three to four hour project ended up taking most of three days, and that is only because I was limited by a publishing deadline. I should have scanned the pencils and inked it digitally. I do better in “sketchy” styles when I can edit and redraw on the fly. I did not have time to go balls-out inking this, though I would have, if I could stay on task.

Lance and Jin Sketches

I am desperately trusting the ADHD specialist and/or therapist will be able to help me in March. It feels like my brain is in a fog about 75% of the time I am trying to do anything that requires extended focus or concentration. My day jobs have all been very active and fast-paced, so I perform well there. This is my last major obstacle to making any further significant forward momentum, and I am beyond frustrated. I have been self-medicating, with some success, using caffeine pills to finish the Dawn piece, but even that is slow.

SSL, Store, and Website Updates

Posted in work on October 8th, 2018 by Jin Wicked – Comments Off on SSL, Store, and Website Updates

This is just a short post to note that I spent several hours today on technical grunt-work, implementing SSL across all of my websites. I had been putting it off for a while, but one of my readers nudged me about it last week. So now you will find the happy little padlock icon in your browser-bar, and surf more securely. The worst of it was correcting some stupidly hard-coded image URLs in every comic archive post. I am so exhausted that the mind-numbingness of it was almost welcome. More loose-ends finally tied up, though.

The “About Me” section of this website has been expanded and updated.

My Etsy store has re-open post-Fall Comicon, with updated inventory counts. Some items have very low stock numbers, and some will not be reprinted, to make way for new items next year. Now is a great time to place an order!

I am also very happy — and maybe a little overwhelmed — to report that the Internet loves my black jumpsuit and boots as much as my in-person guests did! I wish that I could find more like it, and the short-sleeved white one, but I purchased them back in 2003. If you happen to run across any similar suits in a current-day size 2 to small 4, feel free to send them along my way. If it is something I can use, I will happily trade art/sketches of equivalent value.

Facebook Post

I should be receiving the photos from Fall Comicon soon. I am looking forward to that. Special thanks to the lovely Kristina who assisted me this show, and to my friend Ben Cooper and his daughter for handling the photography. I am grateful to be given the opportunity to help grow this convention and take it to the next level, and to those friends and fellow volunteers that make that possible. The MCBA is the closest thing I have to a family, and one of the first places I have felt truly welcome in my life. I will fight with everything I have to ensure its future going forward. This is my home now.

The rest of this week is set aside for drawing, recovery, and the day job. Get back into the gym on Wednesday. No pain, no gains, as the saying goes.

Turning Points, Vol 2

Posted in health, work on October 3rd, 2018 by Jin Wicked – Comments Off on Turning Points, Vol 2

Short written post this week, as most of my energy is going into preparations for MSP Fall Comicon, specifically churning out pre-drawn sketch cards to give away to the first visitors to my booth in the morning. I also plan to give away the remainder of the “piRATe” tote bags left-over from the spring convention. I have stuffed them with free colouring pages, crayon packs, and flyers.

I eat the cheapest nutritionally-sound meals I can engineer, so I can afford to give more back to YOU! All right, I am actually just that fuckin’ boring IRL.

You should see my growing collection of Goodwill-grandma sweaters.

Venture Brothers Sketch Cards

I plan to continue drawing sketch cards over my lunch breaks throughout the year, so I can bank them up for conventions. The exercise in different styles feels good, and they are a fun way to scratch the itch to do fan art.

More notable milestones recently — today I crossed 7k users on my Facebook page. I am on schedule to max out my personal account’s 5k, and reach 10k on my page by the end of the year. Please follow if you are not already!

There have been lots of additions to the gift and guest art gallery!

Goal weight achieved!

Also, for the record, today I reached my original weight-loss goal of 110lbs. It did take longer than I intended, but my focus shifted to weight maintenance after May. Once the convention season has ended, I plan to experiment while I figure out how much I need to eat to maximize my weight-lifting efforts.

That’s all for now! I hope to see you at Fall Comicon this weekend!

Turning Points

Posted in work on September 27th, 2018 by Jin Wicked – Comments Off on Turning Points

As I mentioned in the previous post, on Monday this week I hit the milestone of 100 patrons on my Patreon account. This month is also notable because I have reached parity with the most income I have ever made, on an average monthly basis, from my art and comics. The previous high-water mark was in 2007 before my productivity, health, and mental health started to decline. Of course, my living expenses are much greater now, and I am not comfortable going without health insurance like I was throughout my 20s. My audience is still slightly smaller, but growing steadily on all fronts and I have strategies in place to continue that growth. I also produce multimedia content now, have a larger arsenal of technical skills and tools at my disposal, and a baseline of unshakeable confidence and patience that I did not have in the past. This is all independent of the healthier changes on the personal side of my life.

In the simplest terms, I have found a way to “hack” my obsessive brain and thought patterns to make them work for me. I go to sleep at the same time most nights, eat the same food and wear the same clothes most days, and have distilled my days down into a clockwork, highly-efficient, repetitive grind. This would probably drive most people insane, but the resulting stability and predictability works very well for me. I break my routine one or two days per week, and the wide diversity of projects I work on keeps the need for variety satisfied. I have gotten rid of almost everything I own that is not functionally useful or something I admire daily, to minimize my time spent cleaning. There is some work still to do bringing my book-keeping up to date, and organizing my office. Once that is completed, I will have nothing holding me back.

This feels like my moment. This is the part of my story where three-and-a-half years — really, four years if you go back to when I first started to work again in 2014 — of effort in both my personal and professional life start to come to fruition. I am in the best physical and mental shape of my life, and bringing all the details into order on the business side of things. I have a clarity of vision how everything will ultimately come together, and rigorous plans in action. All that is left is to open the throttle, and see how far I can go. Watch out!