A relapse.

I’ve had a bit of an internet relapse lately. I thought if I reintroduced myself to websites slowly, that things would be okay.

But, in actual fact, I don’t think they are. Spending too much time on them again. This time, I don’t know what to do about it. I’ve been enjoying the drawing prompts and getting ideas off other people, but I don’t feel like I am in control of the ‘moderation’ aspect of my internet use anymore.

Is it time to step away again already and just come back to this place? I feel like an alcoholic going back to the bottle. I enjoy it while I am doing it, but am filled with regret for it afterwards.

Either way, I feel like I am being controlled by things online again, so I’m going to try and just do some drawings – start on the next Primarch in the series, maybe just do a few small critter doodles and get on with life away from this-here-internet again.


Some self reflection

I took a step back from the internet – I’ve always had some sort of presence on social media – when my Husband finished work for the Christmas break on the 15th of December. I was using some websites pretty avidly in the month or so before this date and honestly, I was feeling like it was taking over my life (again)

The break has been welcome and now I am looking over my actions with hindsight I can see how badly I was using the internet and social media; I was in the grips of addiction. The decision to take a step back was both welcome and eye-opening.

I took a quick peep on my dA account while I was writing this post; as that’s the place that I have been most active and it’s all doom and gloom. People threatening to kill themselves over (honestly) the dumbest stuff ever and all I want to do is scream at them to get a grip! I think, in part, it’s because that now I am a bit older I don’t really feel like I fit in with the younger people on there these days. Where issues like, Apu from the Simpsons suddenly being outed as a racist character, seem to be more relevant and important to discuss than third world poverty. Or where the ability to pick and choose ones gender on a whim seems more un/acceptable than the so-called rape culture we live in. I am generalising for emphasis here; but these are the things that I was encountering daily on the wider internet. And also being labelled a stalker for reading the pages of another persons blog  – surely, that is what a blog is for? Reading?

Needless to say, it all just became too much and the decision to leave it all behind was a welcome one.

But, what am I thinking of now that I am in the midst of this break? I’ve used the internet to define a large part of who I am for a very long time. Websites, like DeviantArt have been the platform for my voice and my art for the past 14 years – longer than some of it’s users have been alive – so I have been left to do a serious amount of thinking. If I leave these social media sites behind me I know I will overall be happier and leave a more fulfilling life and I won’t be carrying around this addiction anymore. Yet, I would cut off some people I have known for a very long time, people I see as good friends and some of the only social interaction I get sometimes. I know I’d hear a lot less from some important people in my life – to the point where I doubt I would hear from them at all.

Do I stay in a place that ultimately isn’t good for me, but gives me a platform to express my creativity and gives me contact with people. Or, do I use the internet and the social platforms I have to keep in touch with people and express my creativity at the expense of my mental health?

I can see pros and cons for either side of the argument and I am thankful that I have enough time to ponder the conundrum for a while longer before the husband returns to work and I am left more or less alone with these thoughts.

I am thinking that there must be a healthy medium somewhere, but considering how the internet feels like an addiction surely using just one website (including my blog) is like an alcoholic or drug addict saying ‘One won’t hurt?’

Photovember #4


Today, was all about puddle testing with the Chief Puddle Tester!

I don’t know what makes a good splashing puddle, but it seems that Marcus does. If its not good enough, he quickly moves on to a puddle that is. Or in this case, stream.



The nice weather has got me thinking that I should be outside painting and enjoying the sun – but whenever I think about doing anything remotely art related I just think of all the canvas’ I’ve already got finished upstairs and how they’re gathering dust because I have absolutely no business knowledge or any ideas what to do with them.

The truth is, I enjoy painting, I enjoy doodle artwork, I enjoy furry fandom artwork and I enjoy writing. I don’t have the ability to focus on just one thing and stick with it for any real length of time without facing burnout and ending up unable to do any of these things for a length of time.

I think burnout is fine (or as fine as it can be) when you’re an established artist (or writer, or blogger or any other thing that can be established) But when you face it after a short length of time and you’re a noboby facing eviction from nowhere land, then it impacts you more. It hurts and damages you, knocks your confidence maybe?

Imagine, you’re just trying to get off the ground with a new venture. You put everything into it and then whollop, you’ve been burning the candle at both ends and just can’t seem to do anything anymore. It’s especially difficult when there is little to encourage you to keep going. Sure, you’ve got your cheerleaders behind you; your friends and family, that’ll support you, but other than that, reaching out feels like it’s next to impossible.

I’d love to have an art career, I’d love to be able to tell people that as well as a full-time Mum I am an artist, because right now I honstly just feel like a failure. I’ve no income and completely relying on my Husband for everything and despite is having the talk of ‘Thats what we agreed on’ I sometimes feel like it isn’t fair on him to provide for us on his own.

But… as with everything, it seems like art and selling is more of a popularity contest than anything else. You get popular on sites like Society6, more people see your work, you sell more. Your not popular. You’ve had it! You’re popular among the Furry Art Community, you get support and commissioned (Seemingly regardless of artistic merit) You don’t have the right friends, you’ve had it! To the point where I joked with someone that you need an ‘Art Sugar Daddy’

I know, I know, it’s mostly my own fault because I have asolutely no sticking power or dedication to keep something going. I don’t know why but I shoot myself in my own foot because as soon as I am ‘getting somewhere’ and talk to people I completely clam up and run for the hills as though getting close to people is a problem – which it really is, but thats a story for another time.

Something I struggle with

I didn’t want to write this post either – maybe next time I’ll look at what I have to write before accepting a challenge.

Mostly, because I find if I dwell on the things I struggle with they feel a little all consuming and it tends to get me feeling a bit overwhelmed and it’s a downward spiral.

There is one thing though that I think I really struggle with. Overthinking. I am always concerned with ‘Is this the right thing to do?’ or ‘What will be the consequences if I do X thing’ It’s pretty much a problem with everything that I take on. The fear of failure, rather than just trying something out. Rather than feeling free to parts of my ideas or creative adventures, I am more concerned with what’ll happen if I do the thing.

For example, I have a lot of story ideas and character concepts in my head – but rather than jut enjoy these ideas while they last, I tend to think, what happens if I only get into them for a few days and they fall flat on their backsides and I never pick them up again? Ultimately, who would really give two hoots if this is the case! I mean, as long as I enjoy what I am doing at the time and in the long run no one gets hurt, it’s all good right?

I feel this way with all my ventures really. The fear of failure or whatever that holds me back, when really I should just let go of it all and enjoy everything while it lasts. Rather than overthink and over complicate things.

Pet Peeves

Ooooh, this’ll be a fun one! My top three pet peeves. I could say about some smaller more insignificant things, like chewing gum or litter but while these annoy me, then generally don’t get me ranting my head off all evening about it!

Bullying – I think this is more than a simple pet peeve to be honest. And if anyone actually likes bullying there is something wrong with their heads, lets be fair. But, what I really cannot stand is when adults bully children. I was in the local market this weekend and one woman was sat at a nail bar while her daughter was sat on the floor behind her – I think playing with a toy or something, either way, not up to anything much at all while she waited for her mother – but the mother was busy telling her. ‘Oh look, what a stupid little baby, on the floor.’ I guess she didn’t want her daughter to be sat in the middle of the floor, but it was the condescending manner in which she spoke to her child that made me remember it. I know it might seem like nothing, but to me it came across as totally mean.

In relation to the bullying peeve, is people that guilt trip other people online. It seems like there is this big thing now where it’s all right to be friends with someone and make them be friends with only ‘you.’ Or role play with only ‘you.’ Or conform to ‘your’ thoughts, rather than let them do what they want to do. And should you have a disagreement because you don’t do as they say, you know the friendship will be over and you’ll have to face a series of guilt-trippy journals or ‘vagueposts.’ I am having trouble expressing my thoughts here clearly, but those who know what I mean should understand.

Being lied too – This is a big one as well, I think I can mostly blame my Dad for it as well, cause if I remember rightly, it’s something that annoys him greatly. I remember I was going to go somewhere with a friend and for whatever reason they didn’t feel up for going. That would have been fine and it wouldn’t have bothered me in the slightest, if they’d told me their reasons. However, I got told that tickets had sold out. I knew this wasn’t the case as I checked online and could have brought tickets for this event. Why go through that elaborate deception rather than just say they ‘Didn’t have the money’ or ‘I don’t feel up for it.’ I guess they thought they would have been sparing my feelings, but hey-ho!

Questions – This might be a bit of an odd one, but I hate it when I am asked the same question over and over again. It wears me down until eventually I give a stupid/sarcastic answer to the question. Being asked ‘Are you okay?’ constantly is really draining. I don’t mean as in every time I see someone, I mean every 10 minutes or so.

Why do I/You paint?

Why do I paint?

I’ve often asked myself this. Why do I create paintings, drawings and write?

It’s mostly addiction.

Not to the process of creating itself, because I personally have taken breaks from the creative process before. But addicted to that strange and often horrible feeling afterwards.

That feeling of euphoria that you’ve created something from your imagination and put it down on canvas sucessfully. Nothing can replace that feeling. You’ve made something from scratch and it’s all you. Your brain child. A part of your soul that you get out of yourself and share with the world – regardless of if you actually show anyone or not, it’s still there.

Yet there is also that horrible emotion that you actually feel utterly rubbish at everything you do and you’ll never get something looking right or how you’d like it. You’ve failed your brain child by making them something that doesn’t look perfect.

Then there is turning that emotion into a positive force that makes you try all over again.

It’s an addictive process really. I don’t know if every creative person feels this way about creating whatever it is they create or if it’s just my underlaying lack of self confidence and / or esteem, but I feel this way about a lot of the things that I put my creative mentality towards. Be it painting abstract art, drawing characters for others and myself, or hobby modelling. I look at what I have done afterward it is finished and rarely feel happy with what I have done.

I know for professionals it’s a part of their working life, illustrators have to create because it’s how they get paid. Fine artists create to impress galleries in order to showcase their art and sell paintings or to get private commissions. (This is a grand generalisation I know) I never really got along too well with the pressure I feel in either of these stances, so I can’t say that I paint for the money.

Yet a day or so after the feeling of dejection fades and I want to pick it all up and start over again. Maybe I am just a sucker for punishment! I don’t know if this is the real reason that I paint, but it is a part of it certainly. That drive to want to better myself in the craft I’m working on. Maybe I just paint for myself.

I’d love to hear other peoples thoughts on this question.
Why do you paint?