Looking back to look forward

(a.k.a. bye 2013, hello 2014) I'm not one for resolutions, but I thought it might be self-educational to break down what I actually did accomplish illustration-wise last year. I think it's the curse of the creative to underestimate accomplishments, and while the logical part of me knows I did do quite a bit this year, I still have that nagging feeling that I really didn't do much. So, in an effort to put the dickish part of my brain in its place, here's a breakdown of what and how many pieces I did complete in 2013.

  • 13: Cthulhu Slippers Season 1
  • 1: Cthulhu Slippers Logo
  • 31: Month of Monsters (4 colored)
  • 1: Thursday's Children eBook Cover
  • 6: Thursday's Children Spot Illustrations
  • 1: Beyond the Wall Podcast Logo
  • 1: Consumption Podcast Logo
  • 4: 23 in '13 Challenge (3 colored)
  • 1: King of Beards Commission
  • 15: Doodle Swap #14 and #15
  • 3: Homebrew Labels
  • 1: End of Flesh eBook Cover
  • 1: Bedtime Stories for Badasses eBook Cover
  • 2: Scalzi Fanart (Redshirts and Snailquake)
  • 1: Doubleclicks Fan Art
  • 1: 512 Words or Fewer Fan Art
  • 1: CmarauderCon Badge

Total pieces: 84

Holy crap... 84?! I was much more productive than I thought I was. Interesting. That's not even counting all the sketches and doodles. Huzzah!

While I only did 4 pieces specifically for the 23 in '13 Challenge, I think I'm going to call that a success since my goal at the start was to create at least 23 large full-color finished pieces (I did 32 of those). Because my jerk brain keeps searching for some way to make it seem like I still didn't do all that much (stupid brain), I'm now curious how many of those I consider portfolio pieces.



Not bad, but I think I could do better on that account.

Where to go from here:

  • Keep working to improve my digital painting (I'm working through Chris Oatley's Magic Box Course)
  • Make an effort to draw every day and to work on weak areas in those sketches
  • Start a Patreon campaign for a personal webcomic I developed in 2013 (more on that later)
  • Do more work, and do good work.

How about you? What challenges did you face completing your creative goals last year? What lessons have you learned to improve your work process in the future?

As for me, my challenge was always feeling like I never had time to work on anything. It's strange saying that now that I have a numerical value to contradict that feeling. I did get things done, and quite a lot (for me at least - full time professional artists typically crank out more). Working on things just one little bit at a time does produce results even if it doesn't feel like progression at the time.

Anyway, just a bit of self reflection.

Time to work on something. :)