In October 2017, I put down my pencil and stopped drawing consistently, walking away from being as freelance character illustrator.
Since then, I have considered it. I have sketched a little here and there. Tried to find my passion again and it just never came to me. A chibi here, a design there. Book covers, while I love making them, scratch a different “itch.” It’s more graphic design with some principles or photography. There’s a little bit of digital painting, but it’s up to personal taste.
But book covers don’t scratch the “itch.”
What is the “itch”? I want to see my characters come to life. I want to see scenes from books play out on the canvas. It’s why I started drawing at 14. Tell stories by making comics.
Well, I’ve found myself in an interesting position. I can’t type as much anymore, not until my doctors and I discover exactly where my issue is with my left arm. I have to limit the writing hours. This isn’t the end of the world (no moving the publishing dates or schedule yet. My editors are lovely and flexible for me). I just have to maintain a strict schedule for my health. That’s okay. It also leaves me with FREE TIME. Real free time. Not “potential more- working time.”
Just free time.
So while sitting around, letting my left arm rest to bring down the pain levels and decrease the numbness sensation… I remembered that I am right hand dominant. Oh shit, I could fill time and be creative by sketching and re-teaching myself art.
So I picked up my iPad, grabbed the Apple Pencil, and the oddest thing happened.
The spark came back. I rediscovered the passion. I’m really excited to redevelop my skills and grow. I’m so excited to draw Jacky, Everly, Alexius, Hasan, Kaliya, and everyone else. There’s so many moments, so many different characters, and so much I can learn.
I am not going to make full length comics/web comics. The time investment, the potential for arm/shoulder injury? Nah. It would be so time consuming, there would be a chance I had to choose between comics or books. Books always win. Why? They’re not constrained by what I can physically do and they tell more story faster. However, a single illustration can tell a story too, or a series of images. There won’t be a dedicated “draw this entire story as a comic”, but there will be a “let’s draw a few moments from this book this week”.
Sometimes, passions accidentally wander back into your life and you feel differently about them. Note that none of what I’ve mentioned is: I want to draw for work. I don’t want to draw for work. I want to do artwork for me. In a few months, I’ll make a Patreon tier for anyone who wants to follow along my journey, but in the end, it’s just that: my journey. I need it to be my journey or I’ll stress out and stop.
So here we are, after the roller coaster that has been January 2022 and I’m drawing again after 4 1/2 years. Have a few pictures that I’m comfortable sharing (they’re all in my comfort zone). If you want to follow what I post online, it’ll be on Instagram. I won’t be posting every single picture as a blog post. That’s too much work. Occasionally, some works may end up on the Tribunal Archives website.