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View Full Version : How do you get back into the swing of things...


spyweb007
06-23-2006, 12:11 PM
Hey there, I have one issue left to finish of my 4 issue series, it is scripted and I have the cover completed, in color. I am about half way through penciling the pages and still have to ink them, but I cannot seem to get this thing done.
I honestly haven't made progress in about a year. Now I did change jobs, and having to be into work early every morning has had some impact ( I used do stay up late wroking on things, but really can't do it with these hours), and my wife and I had ababy boy who is now 9 months old, but I am afraid that those are not the real reason I am lagging behind. I don't know, maybe I just got a little burnt out and needed a break, but I really want to finish this project so we can move ahead with it. So how do you get "re-focused" when everyday life gets in the way?

Kep!
06-23-2006, 12:15 PM
have you tried cocaine?

spyweb007
06-23-2006, 12:26 PM
Nah, makes my inking al jittery. :har:

macclint
06-23-2006, 12:41 PM
Just a suggestion, I've been drawing my webcomic Wandering Ones on my lunch hours for quite a while now. I only can do about two pages a week, but 2 pages is far better than no pages.

shushubag
06-23-2006, 07:08 PM
Hey there, I have one issue left to finish of my 4 issue series, it is scripted and I have the cover completed, in color. I am about half way through penciling the pages and still have to ink them, but I cannot seem to get this thing done.
I honestly haven't made progress in about a year. Now I did change jobs, and having to be into work early every morning has had some impact ( I used do stay up late wroking on things, but really can't do it with these hours), and my wife and I had ababy boy who is now 9 months old, but I am afraid that those are not the real reason I am lagging behind. I don't know, maybe I just got a little burnt out and needed a break, but I really want to finish this project so we can move ahead with it. So how do you get "re-focused" when everyday life gets in the way?

I have pretty much the same problem. I just can't get back into the rhythm of things. I hate it. Sometimes I do have the time to do things but sometimes art is just a moody thing. If I try to force it I usuall don't like the way it comes out. On the other hand if I don't push it I'll never get it done.

It's just frustrating for me sometimes. I only have one day off and it usually is spoken for before I even get the day off. It's hard for me to juggle and force myself to get back into the book when I know I won't have alot of time to spend on it.

Scott Story
06-23-2006, 09:44 PM
I wish I had great advice, because this is always tough.

In some ways, I don't think self-discipline is the answer, because if you force yourself back into something that you are not into anymore it often looks like crap.

Still, a little self-discipline is better than no self-discipline. That, and a few false starts till you are back in the swing of it.

Nick Pitarra
06-24-2006, 02:43 AM
I'd say draw it...even if its bad/hurts to do so. It's kind of like starting a diet. It always starts the next day or the next coming monday...never at the moment your putting that burger in your face.

Just do it a little at a time...once you start seeing results (in this case production of your comic) then things will start rolling. That scince of accomplishment should atleast last a little while and help to get the ball rolling. Even the tiniest bit is infinitely more progressive than nothing...literally.Well maybe not literally.

Also, you might want to stop at the half way mark and start inking. It can be a nice change of pace and it's much easier to do at your lunch break than drawing...especially if you use microns.

Good luck to you,
nick

spyweb007
06-24-2006, 10:02 AM
Thanks for the advice guys. I probabply should bring pages to work, things have been slow lately and I have quite a bit of downtime, but I still wouldn't want to been seen working on pages when I'm on the clock if anyone walked by my office. I can always work during lunch like you suggested macclint, ( but I gets hungry! :). I know I will finish it someday, I can't quit now after 3 issues and about a hundred pages of work is in the bag. I just need to decide that someday starts today, and get at it.

j giar
06-24-2006, 10:30 AM
Thanks for the advice guys. I probabply should bring pages to work, things have been slow lately and I have quite a bit of downtime, but I still wouldn't want to been seen working on pages when I'm on the clock if anyone walked by my office. I can always work during lunch like you suggested macclint, ( but I gets hungry! :). I know I will finish it someday, I can't quit now after 3 issues and about a hundred pages of work is in the bag. I just need to decide that someday starts today, and get at it.
Spy, keep one thing in mind. The job you're at, that helps you pay your bills? It's also the one that finances what you're doing on your book. Don't jeopardize that. Especially with a new kid. (Them diapers are spensiv!!)
I actually went through the same thing you did...but for much longer. When my 6 year old was born...well she got my studio. Once I moved out and packed up all my shit. I didn't even touch a pencil for 5 years. Like you said, either I was burned out from trying to get in with big guys, or I made a decision to put things on hold. Either way..it actually worked out for the best. Not only did I return and decide to do my own thing..re-energized, if you will. But I also discovered this place and all these talented and awesome folks on here, all with the same quirks and self doubt. :laugh: But that's what makes us talented, right? There are plenty of people on here with the will to help others get back on track. You obviously want to finish this thing or you wouldn't be asking for advice on here. For me I did force myself several times to at least work on something. Anything that moves you closer, no matter how small, is a positive direction. Keep checking in with us and let us know how things are going. Now pick up that damn pencil and finish this thing!
Best of luck! Jim Giar

nolanjwerner
06-24-2006, 01:03 PM
You might want to check out my comic workshop. Its in my sig.

You could get a supportive environment with feedback and encouragement.

NJW

Ingrid K. V. Hardy
06-26-2006, 10:00 AM
Wish I could offer earth-shattering, instant problem solving advice, but alas, I get the feeling alot of us are in similar boats. I've been through career changes, life changes, etc. and the only thing that keeps my sanity is my pencil. And now I'm working on a comic book project, and the kids are demanding attention, signifigant other needs someone to complain to after hearing all kinds of poop on his job, etc etc etc. Sometimes I think it's best not to think too much about it. Just take a minute and sit at your desk/table/pile of boxes/whatever-you-use. Your hand will get your pencil without you even realizing it! I can almost garantee that you'll regret it if you don't finish your book. :)

mongoose
06-26-2006, 11:04 AM
This is something I've been thinking about for awhile now. I'll probably get fried for what I'm about to post.

Based on my prior experiences and reading about others who became successful by 'doing there own thing', it's very difficult to juggle the day career and work your magic in the evening and weekends. To put it bluntly...you increase your odds by concentrating/focusing/working on your project during the day. In other words, quitting your day job might increase your odds.

Hear me out.

I've read countless bios written by authors who'll tell not to quit your job, but they did and became successful. Check out for yourself. There is a success principle that states one must put theirselves in a position where success is the only option. Burn your ships and fight the war. Only problem, this isn't a viable solution for some of us because we have bills, families, etc, etc. Besides...our goal is to CREATE COMIC BOOKS! Come on, let's be honest - it sounds crazy to quit your job to produce a comic book. Your wife will go crazy. How will you pay the bills.

I've worked for small construction companies over the years and the owners all set out on their own to realize their dream. My buddy is a lawyer that never worked for a firm. He just hustled. He's rich now. Puff Daddy delivered newspapers. Stephen King lived off his wife (and so did many other writers). Kanye West explained his dream to his upper middle class parents, they helped him out. I read that one of the producers of Hustle and Flow sold her house to help produce the movie. Didn't Brian Bendis work at McDonalds really early in the morning. She believed in it. She had faith.

You gotta have some help. I've explained to my girlfriend my goals. She's down (she makes alot of $$$).

Let's discuss this. If your really want this you gotta do what it takes. It's your life...right.

Fahnon
06-26-2006, 11:36 AM
Wow I thought I was the only one who had trouble with this...

jimmycakes
06-26-2006, 11:58 AM
I just look at the pile of stuff I have to do and say, "if I just sat down and forced myself, then the pile will get smaller." eventually... :)

But, yeah, all you can do is sit down and bang it out. Try and figure out a way to make it fun or watch a movie, read a book or something that will inspire you. Music helps me. If I toss in NOFX, white trash two heebs and a bean, the quick tempo gets the old dusty mind workin'. But that's my album. Find your album.

I'm struggling through a book right now that I don't quite feel like working on. But that's the beast, man, that's the beast.

Ingrid K. V. Hardy
06-26-2006, 12:48 PM
I didn't even touch a pencil for 5 years. Giar

5 years!! Longest I ever went through was exactly 1 year, when I was a teenager, and realized how much I missed it and how important it was. Even with newborns I didn't go that long! :laugh:

Buckyrig
06-26-2006, 12:59 PM
This is something I've been thinking about for awhile now. I'll probably get fried for what I'm about to post.

Based on my prior experiences and reading about others who became successful by 'doing there own thing', it's very difficult to juggle the day career and work your magic in the evening and weekends. To put it bluntly...you increase your odds by concentrating/focusing/working on your project during the day. In other words, quitting your day job might increase your odds.

Hear me out.

I've read countless bios written by authors who'll tell not to quit your job, but they did and became successful. Check out for yourself. There is a success principle that states one must put theirselves in a position where success is the only option. Burn your ships and fight the war. Only problem, this isn't a viable solution for some of us because we have bills, families, etc, etc. Besides...our goal is to CREATE COMIC BOOKS! Come on, let's be honest - it sounds crazy to quit your job to produce a comic book. Your wife will go crazy. How will you pay the bills.

I've worked for small construction companies over the years and the owners all set out on their own to realize their dream. My buddy is a lawyer that never worked for a firm. He just hustled. He's rich now. Puff Daddy delivered newspapers. Stephen King lived off his wife (and so did many other writers). Kanye West explained his dream to his upper middle class parents, they helped him out. I read that one of the producers of Hustle and Flow sold her house to help produce the movie. Didn't Brian Bendis work at McDonalds really early in the morning. She believed in it. She had faith.

You gotta have some help. I've explained to my girlfriend my goals. She's down (she makes alot of $$$).

Let's discuss this. If your really want this you gotta do what it takes. It's your life...right.

Did you just recommend getting a Sugar Mama? :confused:

There are many many chuck-it-all success stories. The problem is that for every one of them is 1000 people who ended up face down in the gutter. Always remember if you go the "...or Bust" route, you may "go bust".

VOGLER/ART
06-26-2006, 01:39 PM
I would watch movies or take a walk. Sometimes I won't draw for a day or two. That usually helps.

j giar
06-26-2006, 01:42 PM
5 years!! Longest I ever went through was exactly 1 year, when I was a teenager, and realized how much I missed it and how important it was. Even with newborns I didn't go that long! :laugh:
It was a combination of trying to break in with the big boys and a very demanding newborn. I figured, what the hell she wants me this much now and she'll shun me during the teen years. :laugh: The need was always there. It haunted me at times until I finally got back in. Now I love it even more. :banana:

Scott Story
06-26-2006, 01:47 PM
Quitting for 1 year, or 5? I stopped drawing or painting from age 20 to age 30. When I started at 30, I had to relearn how to draw. Luckily, it all worked to my benefit, and extra maturity brought a lot of extra insight to the table, making me far better than I was before.

Mind you, my theory about creativity is at odds with a lot of other people's theories. I believe that it's best to wait for creativity. Ideas come and go, but good ideas keep coming, and when a story or picture is ready there is a lot of energy built up for it. This applies mostly to writing. As an illustrater, when I get a job I just have to do it, and inspiritation isn't as important as accumulated skill. But, as a writer, I would say "listening" is the most important skill, waiting for the great beyond to deliver ideas to your waiting ears.

It's cool if you disagree with that. I'm not a freelance writer, so I don't have to produce tons of finished script on demand.

Ingrid K. V. Hardy
06-26-2006, 02:01 PM
It was a combination of trying to break in with the big boys and a very demanding newborn. I figured, what the hell she wants me this much now and she'll shun me during the teen years. :laugh: The need was always there. It haunted me at times until I finally got back in. Now I love it even more. :banana:

Oh!! So now you make me feel guilty!! :laugh:

grendel
06-26-2006, 02:17 PM
look at work from other artists ..go to conceptart.org..or check out other websites...you need to feed your creativity with visual images.

albone
06-26-2006, 02:24 PM
I find getting back into the swing of things can be a frustrating animal, but I've found that by inking over some of my pencils or someone else's pencils, that can be enough of a warm up to actually get back into the groove of things. That being said, I'm an awful inker.

Actually, I will pencil over my bluelines, or take some Jim Lee art, blueline it and pencil over that to get going. Basically the same thing as my first recomondation.

j giar
06-26-2006, 02:30 PM
Quitting for 1 year, or 5? I stopped drawing or painting from age 20 to age 30. When I started at 30, I had to relearn how to draw. Luckily, it all worked to my benefit, and extra maturity brought a lot of extra insight to the table, making me far better than I was before.

Mind you, my theory about creativity is at odds with a lot of other people's theories. I believe that it's best to wait for creativity. Ideas come and go, but good ideas keep coming, and when a story or picture is ready there is a lot of energy built up for it. This applies mostly to writing. As an illustrater, when I get a job I just have to do it, and inspiritation isn't as important as accumulated skill. But, as a writer, I would say "listening" is the most important skill, waiting for the great beyond to deliver ideas to your waiting ears.

It's cool if you disagree with that. I'm not a freelance writer, so I don't have to produce tons of finished script on demand.
Yeah, the five year break actually worked in my favor. I came back refreshed and hungrier. I had forgotten all the bad habits I picked up trying to become something I wasn't, art wise. I actually like most of the work I do now. As much as you can like your own work. :D
Wow Scott, 10 years is a long frickin time. Glad to see you made it back. :thumbs:

j giar
06-26-2006, 02:33 PM
Oh!! So now you make me feel guilty!! :laugh:
:laugh: Oh shit! Jedi, I wasn't looking to make you feel guilty. If it makes you feel better I offer you this :banana: and this :carrot: and some of this as well :bounce:

Scott Story
06-26-2006, 02:39 PM
Wow Scott, 10 years is a long frickin time. Glad to see you made it back.

I'm glad I made it back too. Now I'm 41, and after 11 years I'm still goin' strong. Life can take you funny directions.

Ingrid K. V. Hardy
06-26-2006, 04:29 PM
I'm glad I made it back too. Now I'm 41, and after 11 years I'm still goin' strong. Life can take you funny directions.

Hey we can have an over 40 club! Hah! Yep, life takes us on a real ride. If we're lucky. :cool:

Ingrid K. V. Hardy
06-26-2006, 04:37 PM
:laugh: Oh shit! Jedi, I wasn't looking to make you feel guilty. If it makes you feel better I offer you this :banana: and this :carrot: and some of this as well :bounce:

Aww, bouncies! Actually, I am happy with every decision I've ever made concerning my artwork, at least so far. As it happens, today I've just been offered a day job in the horse world, and I'm not sure what to do. My art work is doing fine, but regular work is always wanted (well by normal people)..... so what to do....

spyweb007
06-27-2006, 06:35 PM
Wow, thanks for all the advice, I guess it's a problem we all run into from time to time. I am going to try and make some progress on this this week, even if it's only a little bit, at least it's a step back into things.

Thanks again.

Kep!
06-28-2006, 12:10 PM
this has probably been said, but the only way I have ever gotten back into the swing of anything was just to do it...and do it...and do it (let me tell you about my sex life sometime). The point, is there's never enough time in the day to make ANYTHING perfect, so do the work, get the job done, move on to the next job...wash, rinse, repeat. This applies to all ventures. If you sit down and muddle, and complain, and fret over your work (It's not as good as Perez...WAAAAAAAA) you'll never move on to become your own artist. As a Writer, I quit trying to be be Hemmingway and am now shooting considerably lower...I just want to be better than Dan Brown. I think I can reach that goal...and next week I'll pick a new one.

katana
07-01-2006, 09:03 AM
yep. In my case I have a painting on the easel I started 4 years ago. It's not a great painting but its one that I felt an image and someday I know I'll complete it. My drawing is satisfied in thumbnails, but when I settle into working on a larger drawing, I can usually get the figure fleshed out, but then it drops dead in it's tracks, due to my various distractions..(read other interests). The problem we are all having is the same. We may use whatever handy excuse is nearby, but essentially the solution is unique to each of us. In my case, I believe (without an ego) that if I am successful as an artist, than I'll have to contend with being happy. Life is more inconvienant when your miserable. What will I have to complain about if everything is going well? I guess it's some kind of self injurious behavior...On the flip side...My last day at work was yesterday, at the end of the month I am moving to Raleigh , N.C. Where in addition to getting away from new england winters I'll be able to start fresh and pursue my dream. I don't have a family to worry about, but then i also don't have a support team to aid me on my path. We all have it in ourselves to obtain (not just endlessly follow) our goals. What it takes to make yours a reality is buried deep within you. Be well...(Yea I'm 41...mid life crisis time...)

Oscillationman
07-14-2006, 05:20 PM
I have to say, man it feels good to be not the only person to have gone through this! Wow, what a great sense of community! Thanks gang!
I am almost 39 and have been in and out of the comic creating thing since I was 5 and through the years, my passion and waxed and waned like the tide.
Every time I get rolling, something would happen and I would hit a brick wall, begin to doubt my talent ( I shouldn't, I have been accepted with high praise for the Kubert School 2x and hold a A.S. in Fine Art and a Master's in Art edu) and I seem to start great projects and never finish them. It's very frustrating..uuhghgh.
But as you guys stated, now there is this great community of like-minded folks who love this process. Thank god!

You all have inspired me and made me feel sane.. (well as sane as I can be.LOL)