Tranquilo, あっせん な よ -- words to live by from Tetsuya Naito, one of my favorite wrestlers from Japan. Because, seriously, people need to relax and chill out. I personally haven't been posting much of anything lately because I've had my nose to the grindstone working on getting my comic finished. I'll have a reveal for you guys sometime in September, but for now I'm so absorbed in creating sequential art it's all I can think about!

I bring up tranquilo, though, because I've noticed a handful of artists I follow on Twitter have been dealing with a lot of heat and might not be coping with it in a healthy way. To those affected by online toxicity, please remember that it's very easy for people to be malicious and spout mindless drivel through social media. And that's exactly what it is -- mindless drivel. In most cases I've seen, the mindless hatred is steeped in speculation and stem from baseless rumors or simply opinions.

It's very easy for anyone to make a snap judgement and comment with an uninformed opinion. Most people aren't willing to do the homework involved to formulate a meaningful opinion and hence we get social media being bloated with [enter expletive].

As an artist, criticism is valuable and if someone doesn't like your work it's worth listening to the reasons why, but don't obsess over the negativity. If you can distinguish them, take any valid points your critics have and see if you can benefit from the knowledge, but debating your detractors and trying to convince them of the merits of your work doesn't usually pan out well. It's very rare that a person will turn a corner sincerely through interactions on social media.

Also, remember, there are block and mute functions. I've never had to use them, thankfully, but they're there for anyone who could benefit from them. Logout is a good one too. There are also those sleep and power buttons that log you back into the IRL app known as reality. Not to say that social media can't impact your reality but it's really up to you to decide just how much control you're willing to give it over your day-to-day.

So yeah, tranquilo.

Constant Motion

This year's con season was particularly satisfying for me and I'm still slightly reeling from the aftereffects. Mostly because I'm trying to get rid of this nasty flu that hit me from outta nowhere! But as I'm now able to sit up and simultaneously remain conscious I can actually get back to work, and with even more zeal than before!

Well, the zeal will come later, once I'm rid of this damn fever and cough, ugh...

Anime Expo, quite frankly, sucked! They sorely need to cap attendance for that con as it is ridiculously bloated and ill-organized. Despite purchasing the 4-day pass, I did not return after the first day. I won't be returning as an attendee, but I am seriously considering renting a table at the artists alley next year, as that was one of the only parts of the con I did enjoy a lot. It was also one of the only areas you could move around in without having to carve a path through the tumultuous sea of bodies.

Comic Con was the real game changer for me. It was my first time attending Comic Con and the opportunity presented itself to me on the weekend of the event, thanks to my cousin who is a professional in the entertainment industry. I was able to see and meet so many illustrators who have influenced my artistic life, it was the most fulfilling experience I've ever had at a convention. And this was just walking around the artists alley, I didn't attend a single panel.

Being able to meet these men and women and talk shop was an invaluable and inspiring experience. I've been hard at work on the Ehrgeiz Trading Cards, but there's another project I've been working on simultaneously that will be revealed later this fall. One particularly famous, and or infamous, comic artist gave a speech that really motivated me and that drive has already produced something that I can't wait to complete and share with you all!

There are also a couple other really exciting developments that I have to keep to myself due to NDAs, but this all came at me in the span of a single month! I wouldn't say it's been overwhelming, but it's definitely been a hell of a ride, full momentum in constant motion! Until next time!