[CREATIVE WORKS | RAMBLES] Way Too Long

Hey, everybody! TrainerKelly here with some Creative Works rambles! I may be repeating some stuff that I wrote in my Personal Post, but that’s okay. There’s some non-repeat stuff too.

Business-Side

I’m actually starting with my business-side. I’m putting it under “Creative Works” since my business focus is centered on my creations. Makes sense, right? Right? I hope so.

I’ll admit there’s not too much going on the business front. I’m really excited about this holiday season and would like to open my two shops (Etsy and Storenvy) before December gets here, but I’m not sure about that yet. I don’t feel like I have anything to sell. I have product ideas, but I don’t actually have the products yet. I don’t even have the artwork for the products yet, other than the three I’ve done so far. I would also like to roll out my holiday commission pricing, which I’m both nervous and excited about. I would like to bring in a lot of people with it.

The biggest changes with my business are more in the form of organizing, which honestly extends over to the artwork area. I picked up a couple of books on running art businesses and one of them I had been reading was Art Inc. I have since stopped reading it because I could feel I was just pushing a wall once I hit past the parts I needed. I’m hoping to go back at a later date to continue it, but not right now. My current focus is on How to Make Money using Etsy.

Anyway, my biggest change in organization isn’t really that big. I already had started to do a certain file name system where I indicated if the work was an original or fan work, the series/category the art was from/of, and the title of the piece. Sometimes I would indicate what version it was, if that was applicable. Otherwise, that was what I did.

I began to use it for my artwork subsite, simply to make it easier on me when trying to locate which files to link together. This became so easy for me that the most recent sketches in my Sketches folder were renamed to follow the same format.

After reading Art Inc, I decided to take it one step further and incorporate the date into the title of the file, along with what version it was. This is in additional to being placed in folders with the month and year on them, plus file types/medium type.

To demonstrate, let’s pretend I have a picture of my Pokémon fan character, Kelly, sitting on a rock. Her story is called Kelly’s Journey. It is a fan work. The image is cel-shaded and has two versions — one with a texture and one without. The artwork was sketched on November 20th, 2015 and was inked & coloured on November 22nd, 2015.

The sketch would be named:
fw_kj_kellyonarock_sketch_11-20-15.png (fan work, Kelly’s Journey, Kelly on a Rock (title), Sketch (what kind of picture it is), 11/20/2015)

The line art & coloured files would be called:
fw_kj_kellyonarock_11-22-15.lip (fan work, Kelly’s Journey, Kelly on a Rock, 11/22/15; it is in the .LIP format, which is the format for Clip Studio Paint)

fw_kj_kellyonarock_11-22-15.psd (fan work, Kelly’s Journey, Kelly on a Rock, 11/22/15; it is in the PSD format, which is the Photoshop Document format; I switch to PSD so I can apply text and textures in Photoshop)

When Image is Saved:
fw_kj_kellyonarock_v1cel_withtexture_11-22-15.png (fan work, Kelly’s Journey, Kelly on a Rock, Version 1 – Cel-Shaded, With Textures, 11/22/2015)

fw_kj_kellyonarock_v2cel_notexture_11-22-15.png (fan work, Kelly’s Journey, Kelly on a Rock, Version 2 – Cel-Shaded, No Textures, 11/22/2015)

I may include additional details, such as size of the image, if I have multiple sizes in the same folder. (For instance, if I make one pictures 2000 pixels and another one 1500 pixels.) All of that will be before the date.

I hope you guys can see how much information the file name displays and why I would name them something like this. It makes searching for the artwork much easier! On top of that, it makes it more convenient for when I uploaded to my artwork subsite, which is why I started to do the file names like this in the first place.

I did divide my old and new images into separate folders. Some of the oldish sketches are being saved with the new file names just for my convenience and because, well, they are being coloured NOW.

Besides from this update, there honestly hasn’t been too much. I did think up a couple more things, like how I would organize my money spreadsheet and some details for my online shops. That stuff is kind of useless though without products to sell, right? And if I’m going to make products with my artwork, I actually need artwork to put on it!

Artwork

Artwork is such a broad category. There’s commissions, art trades, convention artwork, product artwork, artwork I’m doing for fun, comics…just so much stuff! I’m going to break this down into further categories though. That makes sense to me.

Convention Artwork

This may be a strange place to start, but it’s relevant! The artwork I am making for convention is closely related to my business because it’s the artwork I’m doing to put on products. A majority of the convention work will be released to conventions first and, when the end of the season comes, will be placed online for purchase at any time. Of course, talking about making it and actually making it are kind of two different things. Talking about it can lead to making it, but only if I take a step forward to do so!

Which I have. I have a small portion (and I mean SMALL) of the convention artwork done. The majority of it are chibis meant for keychains and charms. I’m going to go with original characters for this first convention and plan on mixing in some fan art at a later date, once I figure out my own fan art policy (I have one I think is really good; I need to do some additional research before I try to put it into action).

Most of the characters are actually very new. Unless you are Patreon of mine and have been keeping up with what I have been posting, you probably don’t know these characters. I was kind of uncertain about these characters at first, but the more I think about their stories, the more I fall for them. They definitely fit into my family. I hope though that the characters speak to people even without them knowing their stories.

I think the hardest thing with the convention artwork, so far, is trying to come up with prints for these characters that would allow people who don’t know anything about them to look at the image and go “wow, I want that” and purchase it. I feel like some sort of action in the image is necessary. I can’t just have the character stand there, looking at the viewer. They have to do something that adds atmosphere. I think. I could be wrong though.

I love these new characters a lot though. They seem like a fun bunch. I hope people will like them too. I know that just because I like them though, doesn’t mean others will. I’m kind of curious to see the reception.

Some of the artwork I plan on bringing to the convention with me are also pieces for my stores that are going to go up right away. Similar to the convention artwork, I have nothing done. At least the convention artwork has a few pieces completed!

Commissions

I’m actually pretty disappointed with myself. I really wanted to get commissions completed within two weeks of getting them, but thanks to procrastinating and just simply not feeling comfortable with my surroundings at the time, I didn’t. I’ve barely scratched the surface with them.

I was hoping to work on them today, but I didn’t have a chance to. I woke up kind of early, but decided to finish Hurricane’s picture, an art trade, and start some of the convention artwork. I intended to work on commissions, but it honestly has become to late since I have something to do tomorrow.

Part of the reason why I didn’t want to work on the commissions right away was because Hurricane was still sleeping and the commissions I have to get done sooner than later are both private. I didn’t want him to wake up to them! By the time, of course, he woke up, I was already working on convention artwork.

I can just tell myself I’m making excuses. I just need to sit down and do it! …just not tomorrow because I already have plans. *sighs*

I really want to power through my commissions though so they can be finished, so I can get more, and so I can focus on other projects.

Comics

I feel horrible to say I haven’t moved an inch on the comics. I still want to do them. I genuinely still do! I’m still in the storyboarding stages though of one of them. The other one is technically ready to be drawn, but I really want to wait until the storyboards for the one I’m still doing is completed. I want to post them at the same time, after all.

The comics do really make me excited. I like to think that they are another key, another type of foot-in-the-door to let me through. Bring in more people to my channels and networks. A chance to gain more customers, fans, and friends. I like that idea, personally.

Just like everything else though, just talking about it isn’t going to do anything! I need to take charge and WORK ON ‘EM!

I know I want to do storyboarding for at least 30 minutes a day, which honestly isn’t a long time. It takes longer to write a blog entry than to storyboard. It’s something I can easily do before work, shortly after I wake up, or just before bed. 30 minutes may not seem long, but the amount of work I can get done in 30 minutes is quite a bit.

I still haven’t figured out what kind of priority the comics are for me yet. I feel like they are more important than I’m saying they are, to be honest. I place them under “wants” and feel like they can go on the back burner, but I really, truly feel like they are very important. Perhaps I’m just intimidated from all the other times I’ve done comics. Comics aren’t the easiest things in the world for me, you know.

I like to think about getting used to doing comics though and the kind of life changes it could do for me. I imagine I would be able to crank out them fairly easily (or at least, easier than I can now) and do some of the larger comic projects I would love to do! There’s some fun ones that I would love to see the light of day in comic form, like I intend to do!

I think my artwork will see improvements in general thanks to comics. They’re going to force me to draw perspective and backgrounds. I’m going to have to step up my anatomy game just to make everything look right. I’m excited, but I need to stop just sitting here and daydreaming about it! I need to DO IT!

Personal Artwork

With all these other artworks I have to do, I still want to draw personal artwork. Yet, I don’t feel like it. Not right now, at least. I did when I was with my mom in between getting the apartment and proceeded to draw some pretty nice pictures, but now I don’t really want to do anything with them. That actually kind of makes me sad, to be honest.

I feel like I haven’t really done artwork for myself in a long time. Just a simple glance into my deviantART gallery just reveals that is true — I haven’t taken the time to do any piece for just myself. I’ve done pieces I wanted to do, but they were all specifically for other projects. Some of them for commission examples, others for Kelly’s Journey. However, none of them were created for the sole purpose of my enjoyment. A gift to myself, if you will.

That doesn’t mean I haven’t drawn any images like that, because I have. I just haven’t coloured them. Instead, they sit in my sketches folder, waiting to be coloured. If I didn’t have so many pieces that I needed to do, I would pick out some wants as well.

It’s probably a good thing I don’t feel like working on them right now. It shows that I have priorities. The only thing I personally don’t like about it is that the pictures I drew for myself could make me active again on art communities. I could make my Patreon active. I could dust off my rusty deviantART page and revive it.

I have to think about it, to be honest. Is there some type of compromise where I CAN work on my “want” artwork, in addition to the “need” artwork? I’m sure there is. I’m just going to sit on it. For now though, I just want the “need” artwork.

Totally random though too, but if I post one piece of artwork every Saturday on deviantART, I would technically need 52 pieces of artwork. That’s actually a really small amount. Huh.

Other Artwork Stuff

I have so much artwork I wanted to do for Hurricane360, but thanks largely to laziness and depression, I didn’t get to. I still plan on finishing up the pieces anyway because I love a good bulk of them. They’re just not going to be used in his videos. I’m aiming to get better at that though and get at least one picture for his videos done ahead of time. I plan on making some “generic” ones too, just in case I slip behind for some reason.

I did manage to finish one piece, the Super Mario 3D World Cat Suit chibi us set. He requested I draw us in the cat suits in my chibi style. He has been kind enough to hold off on posting the video and I thank him for that. He could have posted it up earlier if he didn’t have to wait for my artwork.

I really do enjoy doing artwork for him. I hope one day, when my YouTube channel is active again with the variety I want on it, his watchers will see my art videos and start commissioning me or something. That’s probably just a dream though…maybe? I don’t know. All I know is since being featured on his channel, my subscriber count has gone up by about 10. I know that doesn’t seem like much, but when your YouTube channel is inactive…it’s kind of impressive.

Speaking of YouTube, I do have to revamp my channel’s look. It’s so not ready for premiering. I suppose that’s okay though. It’s not like I’m ready to get back to it right now anyway.

I also did an art trade with the YouTuber, Tauberpa. He’s friends Hurricane, hence why I was able to get a trade with him (though, I’m sure he’d do an art trade with you guys too if you asked). He finished his piece shortly after I requested it. I finished his piece today. Oops. I kept telling him I’d start it soon, then I would procrastinate or get distracted by something that was a bit more necessary to focus on.

Overall though…not much else on the miscellaneous artwork front. Mostly just unintentionally rejected pieces for Hurricane’s YouTube and an art trade.

Writing

I want writing to be a big part of my life, both in business and for fun. I actually love writing, sometimes to the point I get so excited that I get anxious! I don’t think people realize I love writing though. Well, I shouldn’t say that. I think my family knows I love to write. It’s one of the few things my family knows better than my friends.

Sadly, I don’t write as often as I would like to. I think my ideal work schedule would probably have a day and a half dedicated to artwork, then I would switch over to writing different things all day long for another day or so or something. I don’t know. I just want more writing in my life!

There’s a few different writing topics I would like to talk about, so here it goes!

NaNoWriMo

It is currently National Novel Writing Month. I was planning on skipping this year, but after one of my offline friends expressed interest in joining this year, I decided, hey, why not join to? I knew what story I wanted to go with and I knew some of the details, but I really wanted to plan.

Unfortunately, I planned after NaNoWriMo started and got distracted by priorities. To be fair though, my friend hasn’t had much luck either so far. That’s okay though. It’s not like we can’t get together to write our stories at a later date. I think we both have priorities to focus on and that’s okay.

I would have liked to do NaNoWriMo though. I’m sad to not participate again, but that’s alright. At least I now have about half a story planned.

Kelly’s Journey

This poor baby has been stuck in limbo since July! I can’t say I don’t want to write it because I do! I do, I do, I doooo!!! Sometimes I want to pull away from my priorities and just write the dang chapter. I’m on episode 25 and my goal for this year was to get to episode 30.

So, unless I suddenly start writing one episode a week, I’m not going to hit my goal.

Again, I can forgive myself because this hasn’t really been a good year to sit down and work on projects. I think now I can do that, but again…priorities! Granted, I feel like Kelly’s Journey is a priority for some reason (perhaps because it’s included in my goals of the year).

I really miss writing it and I still aim to post up the newer episodes and the earlier episode rewrites in June next year. I know that seems really weird, but that’s what I really want to do. I hope I have the opportunity to meet my goals for the series before then!

Oh, Kelly’s Journey, I do miss you so!

Other Writing

Since doing the convention artwork, I have been itching to get the character stories out. I’m thinking of giving each character a nice collection of short stories. I wanted there to originally be about 5 to 7 short stories, but I quickly realized that that’s too little to express these characters! They’re such a lovely bunch.

I have some plans of what to do with their stories too once I complete them, but I’m not going to reveal that now. I’m just hoping I can write their stories soon. I think they’re so much fun!

I actually miss writing stories. I miss writing short stories. I want to write novels. I have so many stories to tell. I want to let them all out, without feel like I’m being interrupted by something else (*coughartworkcough*).

The other thing I want to write more are blog entries! I’m beginning to think sometimes, I should just bullet point my experiences of the day/week/month. I can elaborate on certain points if I feel like it’s necessary. It usually takes me three hours to write these blog entries. That’s sometimes too long, especially if I have other stuff I want to do. Maybe I should figure out a schedule or something? I don’t know.

Overall

Man, there’s a lot to think about and do! There are so many things I have to do.

I definitely think I should sit on the “wants” I am questioning if they’re more important than I’m making them out to be. I feel like they should be bumped up, but how do I go about that without getting overwhelmed? I’m hearing it has to do with my day job’s scheduling. Let’s see if I can figure out how to make that work.

Thank you guys so much though for reading my blog entry! I hope you look forward to the next one, even if it’s in a year from now!