Monday, November 2, 2015

Daily Post Challenge!

Here we go with a daily post challenge for 2015! If all goes well, I'll achieve my historic average of 60 posts per year by December 31. Think of it like how you think of Doctor Who or The Closer or wait all year for an incredible month or two of new episodes, and it's worth it. Convince yourself of this, though the quality of this blog will never meet your expectations.

While I didn't post much in 2014, and I have a backlog of sketches, it will still be a challenge to post daily. Currently, at my day job, I'm not only director of my department, but the acting director of another department as well. So, I am terribly busy. But we'll see how this plays out.

I wasn't really ready to yammer on about it online, but 2014 was a tough year. My mom had been diagnosed with cancer, so I was trying to get up to NH as much as I could, and keep all the plates spinning. I drew 4 issues of Lionforge's Saved by the Bell comic, so that was good! But I didn't get too much sketching in otherwise.Things had been looking quite hopeful for my mom, and she was responding to the first round of treatment. The second round of treatment was going well, too...two steps forward, one step back deal. Then suddenly it was one step forward, two steps back, then she was gone. She died peacefully on Christmas day.

Obviously, 2015 has been a challenge, too. Dealing with grief, the myriad of emotions and memories, and trying to find a new path forward with my family. To keep moving forward, I started out the year strong in drawing. I completed the unfinished Arche-Lady Special from 2013, and drew another for 2015. I wrote and drew a shortie for Vertigo's Strange Sports Stories anthology, and drew the first of 4 issues of Saved by the Bell V2 before the project went back on mini-hiatus.

I spent July in NH with my dad, working remotely for MIT. That was great! And I finally decide to finish the monster of a pre-press job—compiling the original Arche-Lady series in two volumes. Each volume is 556 pages, and was a nightmare. I started scanning the original art back in 2011, slowly plugging away at it the layout and annotation ever since. I soldiered through, completed the books (they look great!) but at a cost.

The occasional wrist-arm-shoulder pain I'd been experiencing sporadically became intense and seemingly permanent. This awesome LMT declared my neck and back "a mess" and told me to (1) keep seeing him, (2) get on OT and PT books, (3) get back to the gym. The LMT, OT, and PT folks were all in agreement: due to years of "drawing posture" certain neck muscles became over-developing, pinching nerves. So, I was in PT for Sept-Oct and back at the gym since August, and doing the PT exercises daily. Yay.

Pain is subsiding. I've also not had a headache since June, either. Due to the back/neck issues, all my stress had been shooting up into my head apparently, with the tension of these neck muscles squeezing the nerves. Severe, weekly headaches since, what, 2009? I've posted a lot about them. Amazing progress. 

But, all this to say, my sketchbook for 2015 is also pretty thin. This daily post challenge might also be thin, but a nice challenge at the end of a few challenging years.

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