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Taking it Step by Step

Dear Winterites,

We are still wading knee-deep in agony this week. Well, that filthy sludge may actually be higher. I don’t know if any of my classmates are drowning in it yet, but I worry that it may rise up over our heads soon and consume us all. The only thing to do is keep trudging through and hope that we’ll all make it out to where the ground is firm.

I spent all of Monday finishing up my thumbs for the elevated planes assignment. The first one is the best, and then they progressively got worse in quality as I ran out of time. I had to pause in between for other commitments, which made me worry that I wouldn’t get them done at all, but I managed to wrap things up by around 9:30 or a bit later.

(I honestly like aspects from all three of these thumbs. I'm worried about doing the rough though. There are a lot of small shapes that will need to be 3D yet. Yikes!)

Our Tuesday class dragged on and on and on. We had all printed off our thumbnails and taped them to the board so we could look over them together and give feedback. Now, when we give feedback to each other as peers, it’s great fun. Everyone is very supportive about the aspects they like, and give excellent advice on ways they would maybe fix the things that aren’t quite working. But we were barely given the chance to critique each other because of time (I don’t know why we didn’t start the critique sooner, honestly), so our prof did most of it. That part was disappointed. By the time class ended, I was exhausted and hungry.

I’m super excited for scriptwriting!! This is definitely going to be my favourite class. We even got to practice writing scripts in order to get a feel for the platform we’ll be using. I can’t wait to get started on the project for this and learn how to put my ideas into script. I’ve already got an idea! And no, I'll not give you any spoilers about it, just in case. Ha!

Time passed too quickly, and the class was suddenly at its end. I talked to the prof about how to become a scriptwriter and what I can be doing now to maybe make that my focus. He didn’t have too much time to chat, but he assured me we would be talking about this a lot over the semester. I’m glad, because at this point, I’m definitely interested in going that route.

Wednesday was, as usual with design, a work period. Class lasted only long enough for him to tell us use our time wisely. Well, after having a few annoying issues at the start, I managed to turn all my individual steps into individual boxes. Oh, the joys. And that took all of class time. It’s a foundation for basically everything else, so I’m okay with that.

(Boxes, boxes and . . . oh look! More boxes.)

Used the rest of the day to work on other things, because there is life outside of design. I managed to write further in my next novel and draw from the prompt list I’ve been carrying over from Inktober. I call that a fairly productive day.

(I've included the "cleaned up" version of the drawing that I posted on Instagram. The prompt was supposed to be a scarecrow prince brandishing a sword, but I don't quite thing the prince part came through. Then again, In Ghibli's 'Howl's Moving Castle,' Turnip Head is a prince but looks full scarecrow. So, I guess it works.)

Ah, Thursday. How I love thee.

In life drawing we took a closer look at the skull. We didn’t have a live model for this as none of us have confessed to having x-ray vision. There was some discussion that if you saw everything through x-ray vision as your default vision, the world would be a terrifying place.

It was agreed that looking at babies would be especially frightening since they have all those extra teeth haphazardly layered up in their heads.

(Gestures are much harder to do when you're watching a video of a model. I was having a difficult time with that. But then we got to try a gesture sequence, which, though it's messy and not quite right, is quite a fun challenge. Some of my classmates grasped this style rather well and had beautiful movement images. I'm jealous, but in a good way, haha. Just another thing I'd like to see myself get better at!)

Anyway, I do enjoy drawing skulls. It’s my belief that, since the human skull always looks so happy when you peel back the flesh and muscle, we were made to smile. I couldn’t quite figure out how to properly do plumb lines and sight measuring with the skull since it’s already only the height of . . . one head. But I think mine turned out good. The first one was a bit rough, but the other two I quite like.

(The skulls all had certain physical damages they were suffering from. The better two (top right and centre) I refer to as the Frakenstein Skull and the Pirate Skull.)

For character design, we started learning how to do character rotations. I found that immensely enjoyable. It made me want to create more character designs so I can play around with more rotations! If only I had the time to add yet more things to my list of projects that is already getting backlogged because of schoolwork.

(As there are still a couple more rotations to do, I will post the image once all elements are drawn.)

One thing that’s nice is that I’m starting to build a bit of a pack around myself. I’ve felt a bit of an outside since first semester, so it’s great to finally feel like I’m making friends.

And we end the week with a day that was both incredibly frustrating and wonderful.

I spent my morning working on my stairs. Well, I got very little done because I stared at the screen not knowing how to evenly space things in proper perspective. I tried searching through the videos we’d been given to substitute for our instructor who refuses to instruct us, and low and behold! There was nothing. One video had a brief mention on what to do, but no actual tutorial for getting it done. How am I supposed to learn things that aren’t being taught? I’m sure I’m going about it in the completely wrong and most time consuming way possible since I’ve been left to my own devices. Even the afternoon resulted in barely any progress. There has to be a better way. I don’t understand how others are getting so far in their roughs already.

I know I could ask classmates for help, and I do. However, they have their own assignments that need getting done and I don’t want to take away too much time from them. There’s no reason other people should suffer because they had to give up their valuable hours to try to teach me. I’ll suffer, but there’s no getting around that.

The worst part is that this assignment will determine whether we’ll pass or fail this class. If we fail this class, we can’t move on to second year. What a way to begin the year. No pressure, right? Can you imagine failing and then going through the rest of the term knowing you won’t be moving on with your classmates?

Seriously, if I fail it won’t be because I didn’t try my best. It will be because the teacher refused to teach me the tools I needed to do better.

Since things weren’t going well at all (and I may have cried a little), I fell into a minor depression. Nothing serious. I just couldn’t bring myself to work on the assignment anymore and decided I needed a treat to make myself feel better. So, I went out and bought myself a mini pie and some childhood favourite snacks. I wanted to buy a plushie, but I may have to go back for that another time. The flowers were tempting as well. I really wanted to buy myself a rose. Again, perhaps another time.

There was some good that resulted from this infuriating scenario. I got a great short story idea and even ended up completing the entire first draft before going to bed! A whole 7 pages in just a few hours! I haven’t written that much in a single sitting in a very long time, so I felt quite accomplished. At least I could end the week on a high note.

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