Hi everyone! It’s been quite a while hasn’t it? I can sum up my long absence in one sentence. Let me just say that mental health can be a real bitch sometimes. I am also trying very hard to go against years of my Japanese American upbringing to not apologize for this. However, with three-quarters of the year gone and radio silence from my end, I thought that it was about time to drop some updates on life, art, making, and the future of Maker Comet. That last bit sounds so serious but rest assured, I’m not going anywhere. In fact, I’ve got some big plans I’m working on as we speak. But before we get into that, let me back up the crazy train and fill you in on the last five months or so.
You may or may not have seen my video announcement on social media proclaiming my triumphant return just two months after my Dad passed at the end of April. In reality, I was just doing anything I could to push myself forward, keep busy, and not neglect my audience. Obviously, that plan backfired pretty hard and I wound up not doing much of anything, work related or otherwise, for the next several months. A combination of ADHD, anxiety, and depression plus the great loads of paperwork that come after a person dies made everything exhausting. Even after all of Dad’s paperwork had been filed, I still had trouble finding any sort of enjoyment out of art or making. A turning point occurred when my sister suggested that I let teaching go for a bit, particularly for Skillshare. A big part of my stress came from pumping out new classes on a six month deadline. In any normal situation, this is a perfectly reasonable deadline but my brain just couldn’t keep up after April. Ultimately, it’s fine. Of course I would like my current classes to remain on the platform as long as possible. They bring in a small amount of regular passive income which is currently covering my Adobe and QuickBooks subscriptions but it’s not the end of the world if they get taken down due to inactivity. I can always rejoin the platform when the time is right.
So that brings us to now. It has been a slow return to work but I’m getting there. I’m learning to recognize my boundaries to prevent future rounds of burnout. At this time, I can't guarantee that I will be making posts on a regular schedule but I am trying to add to this blog and to social media when I can. One of the big things that has propelled me forward is that I redid my studio space. I got a new camera arm that doesn’t feel like it’s going to break, unlike the last one. I added a separate work desk so that I can keep my filming space clear, and I put my monitor on a wall-mounted arm. The side work table doubles as a nice backdrop for when I'm speaking to the camera.
I now have a space that doesn’t suck to use which was a huge barrier to me producing any new content. Given these improvements, I’m sure you are wondering what might be coming next which brings me to the exciting stuff. Since putting Skillshare aside, I’ve been dedicating more time towards my own art and using it as a platform to raise awareness of the Japanese American community and the societal issues we face. I will be posting more blogs about specific projects soon but for now, I can give you an idea of what that looks like. Since I was a little kid, I have always been enamored with futuristic cities and fantastical technologies. But as an adult looking back, I’ve realized that much of the imagery used to depict these ideas was rooted in the fears of technological take-over by Japan and China. I’m looking at you, Blade Runner. My hope is that I can use my skills to depict a brighter future based on my experiences as a Japanese American. My current project will combine miniature models that can further be explored on a phone or tablet, computer, and in virtual reality. I know it sounds like a lot but the good news is, I’ve already completed about 75% of the computer modeling. I’ll be posting more about what that process looks like, if anyone is curious. And please let me know in the comments what else you might want to see as it relates to this project! A huge thank you to everyone who has supported my journey so far.