Friday, August 26, 2011 | By: BlackGargie

A Silver Lining in My Art Career

Good news for me!

Before I quit my job, I was catching up with a friend of mine who works at our local newspaper publishing company through chat and I found out that he had quit his job to start up his own animation company.

I immediately jumped to the chance to ask him if he is hiring, but he said at the moment, he couldn't hire me due to lack of funds, since his company had just started, but he is willing to hire me as a freelancer, so if there were to have any assignments for me, he'll let me know and I'll get a cut out of it.

I just received a call from him the night before that there is a job for me for storyboarding, to draw a storyboard for a script for a 2 minute video or something and I am to meet up with the client to discuss the script later this afternoon.

So this afternoon I did. It was a little odd to try and find where his office is, but I eventually found it. I'm surprised a little that it didn't look like any office I had imagined it to be, since it was supposed to be a production house, but beggars can't be choosers now, can they?

Lucky for me, all I need to do is just get a copy of the script and he told me to draw as I see fit, free reign, but of course, they need to look through the draft first before they can agree whether or not it's good or needs amendments.

So right now, I'm working on the storyboard and hopefully I can at least finish the drafts by tonight to show it to him tomorrow.

Hah! Take that, those non-believers! After years of being told that drawing will get me nowhere, now I'm defying all odds! Muahahahhaha~! :evillaugh:
Tuesday, August 23, 2011 | By: BlackGargie

Working on My Resolution

It's been almost a week and a half, maybe a bit more than 2 weeks, since I quit my job.

I managed to somehow complete some of my outstanding artworks that I've never been able to finish when I was still working, though unfortunately I still need to build up more motivation to start on my personal resolution project, which is to officially publish a manga by this year.

Fiscal printing and selling would be a little hard, judging by the market my country is in, so I might take on my hubby's advice to try an online business instead.

I'm currently working on a mini-digest, like what Doraemon did with their short stories compilation and whatnot. It'll be a mesh of spice of life, romance, comedy, horror, action, drama, thriller and the like, but most prolly be more towards romance. Have yet to decide what title should I give to the overall manga, though I've got some pretty good suggestions by plenty of my fans and supporters, but I'll prolly decide on them once I officially finish all the pages.

If that series goes well, I'm planning to start off with my own manga series called "Walpurgis Night", a story about 2 girls named Walpurgis aka Wallie and Serenity aka Serene who got dragged into a different dimension where the distinction is classified under the colours of the rainbow, and they had to travel through each colour in backward sequence and bypass a guardian to get through to the next distinction, with adventures along the way. It was originally a concept idea that I wanted to use to write a novel, but since I'm more gifted on illustrating my stories than actually writing them, I thought I'd just convert it into a manga series instead.

And I found the perfect characters and initial storyline to kick start this phase.

My old Penjelajahan Anak-Anak Ismail (Ismail Bros' Travels) that I drew and didn't finish midway.

It was supposed to be a sort of Sidek Bros OC kind of manga where I draw these kids being set out on a mission to save the fantasy world from the tyranny of a great evil or something, but somehow, it never made through. And when I reread the manga, somehow Walpurgis Night came to mind and I saw how it would be feasible to actually integrate it with this and expand and actually work on completing a manga and my novel idea. Killing two birds at one stone.

Man, I remember people using me back in primary school to design duty rosters, and look up to me to join art contests, even though my style of drawing doesn't fit the traditional artists like painters and whatnot, and I actually get pocket money from people to help them draw comics. They'll provide me with a clear exercise book and I would draw stories for them.

My first (puppy) love requested me to draw Doraemon doujins, which I think I've drawn more than a dozen for him and another guy asked me to draw an original comic series that featured us: me, him, and some other of our classmates who wish to join in the story. I didnt know the value of money then, so i usually charge them RM1 per exercise book, and I remember I used to draw armed with a ball-point pen and blanco.

Heh, to us kids back then, RM1 is a lot, especially when it comes in those golden coins. Ah, good times, I must've drawn tons.

I think back in tuition class in primary school, I used to have a crush on this Eurasian kid, and I would draw for him with exercise books he provided about inanimate objects as characters. Something like a post-apocalyptic world where humans died out and inanimate objects, due to radiation exposure, suddenly became mobile and sentient.

OK, that was stupid, come to think of it.

To think I've started in those humble beginnings, and look where I've gone to in the world of online art.

It's pretty amazing for me, to say the least.

The Past Bites Again

Was watching The Dark yesterday and I was sorta bitten by the sore past bug, thinking about my relationship with my mom.

After I finally told the truth to my friend: that actually I'm the only child, my parents divorced when I was 6, I live with my mom and had been the epitome of a broken marionette ever since, and that my dad never remarried, or went to jail, or hurt my mom, or did whatever things that I've ever said to her in my letters, and my mom never remarried either, and also my 'stepdad' is actually her boyfriend/sugar daddy she dated, and ironically he's a married man, and the rest is true, both in my journals n my blog about the physical and mental abuse, everything.

You'd think that when your marriage failed due to your husband having an affair would make you cautious, but no~ she had to become the home-wrecker she hated the most.

I also told her that I'm back in good terms with my dad after the incident when my hubby rescued me from my mom. He was glad that I left her and apparently my mom decided to "omit" the fact that she was having battle custodies with my dad, almost settling in court, but my dad's plea was overruled by the fact that children below 16 is compulsory to stay with the mother, and I had to hear from my dad AFTER I left, which is why I realize why my mom was asking questions about whether I would go with her or my dad if I were to face court. I always thought it was her insecurity, that I had to answer her that "I'll choose you, mom" just to make her happy, but now it all made sense.

I remember this really huge argument I had with my mom after the incident where I played truant with Marina and she threatened to send me to my dad, and made a scene with my dad and my dad said "Fine, if you don't want her, I'll take her!"

I should've said "Yes".

"Yes, I'll go with you, Dad."

I should've said that.

I know I shouldn't, but I'm sometimes embarrassed by my past, and sometimes when I tell people about it, I can't help but get the feeling that they're giving me the "God, this child is unfilial, a sinful child" look when they don't even know what REALLY goes on behind closed doors.

When I watched The Dark, the way the daughter interacts with the mother, how American children seemed to be allowed to be angry and throw obvious tantrums at their parents, how they can say "I hate you" without worrying too much about the parents beating them black and blue, daring them to say it again, or be kicked out of the house, or locked up and starved to near death by them.

They were allowed to hate their mother.

Not me.

I am not allowed to hate her.

If I show any indication that I hate her, or want to leave her, I will have hell to pay. She would go through a bipolar period where she will scream and rant at how ungrateful I am to her and that I should just get lost, go away, leave her alone and never see her again. And when I do as she wishes, she would get mad and upset that I'm leaving her, and would either belittle me or embarrass me, or just about anything, to make me stay.

She is a walking hypocritical conflicting bitch.

Could you even believe that she gets jealous at me, despite claiming she doesn't?

There have been occasions where her boyfriends, sugar daddies and boy toys treat me and pamper me more than her, and she got jealous and said that she did not raise her daughter to become a slut and that I must love getting on anyone's pants as long as it is a man, and she pretty much called me a whore while insisting that she is not saying this because she was jealous.

She obviously was.

I no longer have night terrors about her now but I see her in my dreams sometimes. Sometimes she's nice, but sometimes she was the same monster I used to know and grew up with. And that scares me sometimes, thinking about the possibility that I would never get over her.

I can't hate her because she's my mother, somehow, even though in truth I do hate her a little bit.

But I can't love her anymore.

The Sister I Never Had

I was chatting with my friend and it got down to talking about my worries of my infertility, then to the topic about my sister Marina who was able to have children and that I should not worry that my mother's reproductive defects would affect me.

I suddenly felt bad for all the lies that I've told her the past 10 years and decided to finally own up. I told her that I haven't been really completely honest with her and I don't really have a sister, and that I'm an only child.

My "sister" was made-up. Marina was actually a sempai I look up to like a sister because of her artistic talents. I used her to escape my true life as a fucked up individual. I wanted to impress my friend, to show that I have a normal life.

Confused?

Well, the thing is, when I first got to know my friend through her younger sister, who is my junior in high school, I saw her and the rest having the perfect family, or so it seems, and that they were allowed to pursue my talents whereas I couldn't. I admit I was jealous, so I used my sempai Marina and made up a family that she'd be impressed with. I told her that my mother is divorced from my dad because my dad was a violent criminal and was sent to jail, and that Marina was my sister and she's estranged to my mom and my mom is remarried to another man.

Drama much? That's how much I wanted to impress her.

Marina Wong was my senior back in high school. She had the talent that I look up to a lot, and she is my inspiration. She had always been the person before that friend of mine to truly understand my life and my talents, and she's like the sister I never had. She was also the one to inspire me to break out from my old drawing routine (my drawing style used to be stocky, blocky Doraemon style) and pursue a more anime look.

Without her, I wouldn't be here today.

I remember admiring her so much that I played truant just to be with her. It got me black-listed and ended up having a super-fight with my mom, but it was all worth it just to be with her, to talk about nothing but arts, to hear her play the piano in her self-taught skills, to watch her draw page after page of beautiful art and helping her with the storyline. We even created our own written language and secret codes so that we can send each other messages without people end up reading it, and it felt almost endearing in a way for her to share this with me. It also almost cost me the relationship of my other friends and almost made an enemy out of them, but Marina was my universe. Nothing else mattered.

Our relationship even progressed to making me almost lesbian, or bi-curious at best, because she was the first girl I've ever kissed on the mouth with tongue action.

Yes, I know. Odd. But who has never done anything crazy once in their life?

Sadly our time wasn't long-lived. I was Form 1 and she was Form 5, meaning she was at her final year in high school. We had a tearful goodbye, a promise to keep in touch, and we still continued talking on the phone till the wee hours of the morning (when my mom is not around or outstation, of course), until she was finally consumed with personal life of her own and our contact got shorter and more distant.

I do wish I could hear from her again. I tried searching her in Facebook, but apparently she's not a FB goer, sadly. Last I heard she was married with a daughter she named after her original manga character Shellagarinne. She used to draw this manga abt figure-skating or something, or some fantasy story I can't remember, and her main character name was Shellagarinne and she actually named her daughter after it.

The even more last I've ever heard of her was her poem posted on the leisure column of the newspaper somehow dictating how her husband was a scumbag and all, and I worry about her marriage and her daughter, but sadly, we no longer in touch since then.

I really wanna meet her again, just this once.

Toughest Decision Ever Made

Sorry for the rants, but you can see how things been going on lately in my life that one blog post is just not enough to express all of them.

~sigh~ If you are a follower of my dA account and read my dA journal I posted a week ago, I'm still recovering from the fact that my RP friend is ignoring me even though she agreed to end this 2-year long RP we've been doing bcoz she simply lost the mood to continue.

It's our OJ RP I Almost Said I Love You (IASILY), if you do follow up on that, and it is Thrax/Ozzy and yaoi in nature. I felt really bad that time. She was my super fan, she stalked me and found me on msn aftr reading my Osmosis Jones fanfic. She was so enthusiastic, she loved me, and when she requested to start an RP with me, she was so happy.

It was one of the toughest decision I've ever had to make, since that RP was 2 years running, then she just suddenly lost her motivation sometime end of last yr n had nvr been enthusiastic evr since and I told her its either we give it up or we keep it going like we used to, but she said she can keep it going bt not like we used to because she lost her RP motivation, and I said, "OK, that's settled, we have to end it."

She said "OK, but I hate ending RPs though" and then just sorta not talking to me no matter how many times I asked her if she was really, really OK with it and not hating me for it.

I know I take pride in my inhuman level of patience, but she can go for months without RPing and when we do RP, which I always am the one intitiating, she would go for hours without replying me, and sometimes just not reply at all and went to bed without letting me know.

It's my first time to cry over a decision I made though, coz I never felt so bad. The way she ignored me like it was as if I'm the bad person. I actually curled up against my hubby and cried in his arms telling him how bad I felt, and when I told it to another fan/stalker/doppelganger of mine, I was also having tears streaming down my face.

~sigh~ I've never felt so bad about a decision I made. Do you think I did the right thing? Or am I just being selfish?

In-Laws...Meh...

Was in a bit of a stint a few weeks ago, aside from everything else that went on (or didn't go on) with my life. I'm a bit OK now, but it doesn't hurt letting it out a little. Besides I needed to rant and get it off my chest. I don't care who may be reading this. I just wanna let it out.

I had being super annoyed about my dad-in-law trying to kick me out of the house. I haven't even gotten one week of R&R and he's already breathing down my neck asking if I've already got a new job.

He didn't personally said he would boot me out or something, not really, anyway, but it's as if he's not comfortable with me being in the house, that I should be out there off my ass working.

I told him that at least lemme get settled with my driving license before I go look for job, coz who's gonna want someone who hasnt got or still getting driving? But still the buggery questions of "So, found a job yet?" "When are you going to get a new job?" "Found a job or not?" continues on.

ARGH!

If that's not trying to boot me out, I dunno what is.

I was hoping to get like at least 1, 2 months break before I get back on my feet, but nooooooooooo~! Either I work or I be a maid, no in between.

Trying to talk reason to him is like talking to a stubborn ox. If my hubby can't even talk to him, how is my talking gonna get him anywhere?

My hubby understands my situation and tells me to ignore him and concentrate on my driving right now, but its not easy to ignore wen he's always asking me EVERYTIME we have casual talk at dinner.

Now I have a phobia of having family dinners because one way or another my dad-in-law will bring up something uncomfortable, n my hubby's no help because he doesn't listen to anyone. Last time I spoke my mind about having our wardrobe to be in the same place where our bed is, he just blurted out "Alright then, if that's what you want. If you want your room to be cramped up like a sardine can, then it's ur choice. Fine. End of discussion" And there wasn't a discussion to begin with. Very one-sided discussion, if I say so myself

Worse, I was approached by one of my hubby's relatives on a family dinner function asking me about my situation as an unemployed. Though I politely declined their help and told them that I cannot be ready until I get my driving license, inside I was fuming. How dare he go around spreading about my unemployment? Can't he just leave me alone and lemme decide on my own career path and find my own job? How would you feel if your father-in-law goes around spreading things to people you don't even know and not even close to, telling them as if you are incompetent of job-hunting that you need help from others?

I mean, I know he means well and he wants to use his connections to help secure me a job, but seriously, it's just friggin' embarrassing!

Mom-in-law is a typical old school dainty wife where he is the man of the house and her purpose in life is to serve him. Exaggeration, I know, but it's more or less that way. She's not even allowed to be angry with him because he'll just continue teasing her making her more annoyed and kept bugging her to respond to her despite her annoyance, or worse, get angry with her for getting angry at him, so forget trying to ask for her female persuasion for help on taking either side.

I almost managed to convince her at one point when I say I want to quit my job, and she was almost on my side, then one word from my dad-in-law saying "No, you shouldn't quit" and she immediately turned 360 degrees to his side. In the end, I had to bluff them and lie to their faces saying that the company let me off due to downsizing instead of telling them the truth that I actually quit my job.

So if it were to come to it, what makes anyone think trying to convince them that working at home (if ever my line of work will come to that, since I'm considering an online business for my manga career) is the new trend would ever work on old timers like them? If I told them, once upon a time girls weren't allowed to go to school and go to work, they're gonna say "Well, once upon a time, girls were good in the kitchen, and I can't see you doing it."

I live with them long enough to know that they can come up with all kinds of rebuttal to make you lose the argument, and if they know they're at the losing end of the argument, they will just say "Fine, whatever, have it your way, end of discussion" and prolly give you the silent treatment till further notice. Since I'm the youngest in the family, my observation skills on how my in-laws treat their kids and their son-in-laws pretty much seals the deal.

It's like I'm the only person here who still realizes we're living in Neanderthals and my hubby, since he's slightly the spoilt brat of the family, being he's the youngest, and a BOY, as a matter of fact, he's pretty content about the way things are.

Sure, he understands that not all women should belong to the kitchen and all that, but he's used to being pampered n all that, so expecting me to be almost like his mom is a given.

~sigh~ Why is it tht we modern women still have to suffer the stigma?

Right now, he's leaving me alone because he's recovering from his prostate surgery and that I'm keeping myself busy with taking driving lessons, but who knows when he will strike next.

Dreams Again...

I had the weirdest dream ever a few nights ago that has been boggling my mind for a while and I just HAD to write it.

I dreamt that I was both watching and also part of this scenario, like I was a third-person or something, where there was a great big flood happening. Me and my "brother" was sent adrift, then we woke up to find ourselves in a cabin surrounded by fire outside the yard and we couldn't leave, because if we leave we'll be in the risk of being attacked by zombies.

So me and my "brother" ended up growing up with this foreign family, surviving in the cabins until the fire dies out. The world slowly and mysteriously become some sort of post-apocalyptic/communist world, and somehow me and my "brother" develop an incest romance together.

Don't ask me why. That dream just happened.

Later down the road we found out our relationship was taboo and breaking some kind of communist law, and somehow the law-enforcers managed to capture us and made us renounce our relationship if we didn't want to be put to jail. They even implemented torture on us to give in but we refuse to cooperate. I remember it's something to do with hurting my hands or so. Then I was taken to this woman who was so-called my "mother" whom we separated during the flood. She tries to convince me too but I wouldn't budge.

Somehow I kinda feel that this "mother" looks a little bit like Sigourney Weaver.

Then the law enforcers decided to send us to life sentence in some sort of prison where we would be locked in a weird looking jar, and that we have to drink the solution in the jar to shrink us so that the jar will suck us in. Then bottom of the jar was some sort of pebble-like substance, but we're not supposed to eat that, though I did have a few in my mouth by mistake, thinking I was supposed to eat it, but I spit it out quickly. I think the solution was supposed to sustain my life, since we're gonna be there for eternity without food and water, and the pebble-like substance with sand-ish material will be the only luxury of a bed we'll ever have.

We were supposed to be imprisoned in separate jars, I think, but somehow, I drank the solution but before I was sucked in, I reached out for my "brother" and grabbed him in time and I was sucked into his jar, and we were happily imprisoned together for eternity and the law enforcer couldnt get us out because once sucked in and sealed, the "prison" is unbreakable.

Hmm...

Feels almost like an idea for a comic, but not sure whether I should or want to put it in paper (due to laziness, LOL).

Driving Lessons

Finally got down to it and went to do my first driving lessons the past few weeks.

Been putting it off for quite a long time due to work and tension and stress and whatnot, and it was hard enough to apply for a law theory exam retake after I failed once due to my job as well. But now that I'm unemployed and free, I've got all the time in the world to train and learn after hearing my exam retake was a success.

My first lesson was OK, more or less. I got a rather seasoned old auntie as an instructor who teaches me every alternate 1, 2 days. She taught me the usual basics of clutch and steering, and taught me to learn how to judge the road and the corners to decide where to turn. Was a bit shaky on my first lesson and apparently she has a habit of grabbing my wheel and taking control of it to help me turn.

That was a bit of an issue for me.

Now how am I suppose to learn how to judge the wheel and how to turn it if she takes control of the wheel all the time? With her hand there turning the wheel all the time, I can't get the feel of myself turning the wheel and I'd never learn how to master steering wheel.

I realized though that I tend to space out on other things when I'm concentrating on one skill, like say if I wanna work on my clutch, I'll forget about the steering wheel, and vice versa, not to mention trying to pay attention to the road even.

Second lesson was alright, I sorta figured out by myself that I have to balance the clutch and the accelerator. My engine doesn't die as much as it did during my first lesson and I more or less got a bit of the hang of it, though my steering still needed a little work.

During the third lesson, I totally sucked. Well, to be more exact, my clutch totally sucked because I keep ending up dying everytime I'm on 1st gear neutral status. And I almost hit the curb because the instructor has a habit of not telling me where to turn, and I was at the roundabout at the training grounds when she suddenly at last minute asked me to turn to the traffic lights, so I did without thinking and almost hit the curb, causing her to scream for me to brake. But thankfully I was going super slow (20kmph) and I turned the wheel fully enough to manage to swerve slowly from the curb.

I complained about that to my dad-in-law, he tries to justify by saying "I think she just wants to test your reflexes" and I said, "but the route is never the same, sometimes we go around at the same circles, sometimes we turn elsewhere than the usual route", but he and even my hubby insist that "she just wants to work on your reflexes". Some hubby I've got.

Well, obviously reflexes don't work on beginners, do they?

I dunno, I just wish she would tell me where to turn even if we're going on circles. Sometimes I'll be in a blur whether to go left or right and when I'm going where I think she wants me to go, then suddenly she would say "No, not here, turn that way this time".

Meh~!

My latest class was not so bad. My clutch was good, but despite the fact that I've followed my hubby's instructions regarding the accelerator vs the clutch and the street line guidelines to how to judge whether I am within the line, the instructor still thinks I crossing the line and that I'm not ready for the big road, and that if I don't get straightened up, the basic 10 hours will never be enough for me..

Great way to encourage your students, why don't you?

My next class will be after the 4th day of Hari Raya, in which I'm gonna have to contact them first if I want to schedule the next class.

Whoever said learning how to drive is easy should eat their words right outta their mouth :P