Monday, April 22, 2013

Round 1...

Previously on My Medicated Cartoon Life...

Well, quick recap. I haven't posted in years and you will likely have seen that the previous batch of posts were thin on the ground for some time. I changed. The blog ceased to have as much function as it once did. I drifted back into the real world, my other self. So what have I been doing? Here is an incomplete list -

Made a couple of really excellent TV shows.
Had quite a bit of praise as a result of one of those shows.
Been busy being a parent.
Have drawn, painted and generally created.
Generally have been relatively okay.

Oh there were downs. One of my shows very nearly didn't get off the ground. That was severely stressful. But I dealt with it. I have had building frustrations though about my industry and my close working environment - many of those things I have gone through here on the blog but they wear one down over time. I have been okay though.

So what brings me back? How have I become the bitter animator again? What happened?

A combination of things, I think. One element was the usual post-production crash. I'm sure I have mentioned it before but when you're working on an intense production for a long time, there can be a godawful crash when it finishes. A real sense of anticlimax. It is worse when production is hard because you force your body to keep going to get through it. Once over, your body gives up. The crash after this most recent production has been tough. Best show I have ever made. I think it's a fantastic animated show by any standards and I was driving the whole thing. I should be really happy about it. And I am happy with the show, but the crash... that's a killer.

It's almost like psychologically, I expect a parade in my honour for surviving it. Of course, it's my job to thank everyone else and make sure they get their parades. And they deserve them.

That growing frustration is another element. It long since passed breaking point. So I have no other choice but to act on that, to make a change. But any change from the status quo will be so dangerous and terrifying. And yet it has to be done. So there is procrastination, fear, stress and worry all merging together and eating my insides up.

So I have felt a familiar darkness. The tiredness. The disconnection. The inability to take joy from anything.

It's back.

But you know what? I'm not going down without a fight.

I am going to make some big decisions and take action. I shall make changes. And I shall tackle them head-on. It will be scary but what the hell isn't these days? I can get through this and probably come out better for it.

For now, the bitter animator has reemerged. Still, that's not all bad. One thing the bitter animator side of me has going for him is he gets angry. Anger can be a great motivator for change. I need all the motivation I can get right now...

So how have you all been? What have I missed on internet blogland?


Andy Latham said...

I'm sorry to hear about your passage back into Bitterland, but I'm glad you're managing to remain determined to fight.

Something stood out to me in amongst your words:

"So I have felt a familiar darkness. The tiredness. The disconnection. The inability to take joy from anything."

With that paragraph you've described exactly how I've been feeling over the past several months....only it's not familiar to me. I'd be very interested to know how you fight that.

Bitter Animator said...

Well I'm honestly not completely sure. If it is triggered by situational factors or has happened as a result of long nagging discontentment, I'd say perhaps change the situation. That's going to be one of my main steps. Truth is, it could lead to a far worse situation! But it could lead to a far better one too and the thing is, the situation will never get better without change. Change must occur for improvement.

Aside from that, I'm going to try eating better (less sugar means fewer crashes), getting more exercise (nothing fancy, just a lot of walks and fresh air). One thing to do is to try to let go of personal guilt about what we do. We creative types always have a ton of things we want to work on but we also need our rest and relaxation time. So what happens is we find we lose motivation for a project, don't get done what we wanted and then feel guilty about it. It eats us up.

But we can only do so much. So I think the thing to do there is make smaller goals, go at something furiously for a half hour at a time and no more and then let ourselves off the hook. Allow ourselves to be okay with a lack of productivity at certain times. Rest. Relax. And be cool with that.

Sometimes we are our own worst enemy when it comes to being kind to ourselves.

Andy Latham said...

All those tips are things that I could do. When it comes to the first one though, fear has a nasty habit of paralysing us. Or at least it does with me.

Red Pill Junkie said...

Bitter, you're one of my heroes.

And I'm suspecting you're not willing to acknowledge your well-earned laurels.

If I can do something for you, just ask me :)


susan said...

I agree with Red, you are one of my heroes too.

I think we creative types are our worst enemies.

I love the boxer. the song, the doggy, the image of Rocky yelling for his girl at the end of the first movie.

I love the drawing too.

I hope everything lifts for you but you continue to blog

Bitter Animator said...

You guys are awesome. Thanks so much. I really appreciate the kind words and the support. I've missed you.

I have a new post coming soon. I just have to find the time to write it. But I have taken action and things are changing. More soon!

susan said...

Bitter I just started blogging again after a few months off as well. I was wondering if I could use the jpeg with appropriate link like I did in the past to a piece I'm working on. It's absolutely brilliant.

Bitter Animator said...

Sure, no problem Susan!