• STEVEN YU

Priesthood



Real busy week so far. Lots to catch up with. Feels like I'm still settling in even though I moved back to the East Bay about 3 weeks ago. Too much on my plate with commission projects, working on Joan, and prepping for teaching projects. Every step has a sub-step and every sub-step has its sub-step. Hey, but I can't complain too much. It's what I wanted, right? A life surrounded by art and creativity - how is that bad? The dream job is to work on my comic/animation projects full time, but I can settle for part time if the day job is related to what I love to do - which in this case is teaching art. ---------------------------------------------- It's been about 10 years, 8 months, and 18 days since I made the decision to get back into the arts. There's a lot to explain, but in short: I've had several false starts in my art career. I grew up with over protective parents who weren't so sure about my want to be a professional artist. I took several art/animation/design courses back in 2003 (when I was a wee bit lad in my early 20's) at Diablo Valley College and I remember having the time of my life learning; but alas the dream was cut short as I was discouraged from it which led to a long hiatus from art and I jumped into...Economics. Yeah... I graduated late in my life at the age of 29, when most of my peers were married and had/having children. I felt like I should have been following suit, but I didn't. I felt like something was out there for me. So I hunkered down and went back to DVC in 2012, to the animation class I took back in '03, and met some cool people there. Some relationships waned, others solidified -most importantly I learned a lot from my baby steps into the world of art. 10 years later I feel pretty fulfilled. There are more things to do and more hills to climb, but looking back I feel proud of the path I've walked. The rewards really aren't the financial ones (well, excluding the crap jobs I've done), but it's in the discovery of personal truths. Yeah, it sounds very spiritual "woo woo" stuff, but to put it in a more secular way: you learn more about yourself in terms of every strength and shortcomings you have and it's relation to what you should spend time on and where you shouldn't; most importantly, you learn that without having someone to tell you what it is that you are. It irks me to no end when I hear how an artist should be marketed like they're the latest starlet. For God's sake, you're the goddamn visionary. Start designing your life! But, I'm still far away from the success I want. Slowly and steadily, I build and build. The art career is an endurance game. Sprinting helps, but I've seen what burn out looks like and usually it ends with artists abandoning the field completely. It's not about being the best (being better than where you were, yes) or being at top (whatever that may be) - it's about why you're doing what you're doing. A long time I worried during a long plateau with art I was going to be done with it and move on to something else non-art related, but time and time again I keep going back to it. Why? It was explained to me recently by my former animation professor, Arthur Scott King: "Art is not a past time; it is a priesthood". -S


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