J.K. Riki

Listening to Yourself

Sometimes we KNOW what we need to do, we just don’t do it. Last week I wrote about listening to others with more experience. The truth is, sometimes we don’t even need someone else to tell us the right path. Often we’ve already learned it, but we don’t listen to even ourselves!

Case in point, this past week I decided to jump back into animating for the first time in… I literally do not know how long. Months at least. Years? Wouldn’t surprise me. At any rate, I chose to download the latest 11 Second Club audio file and give it a whirl. I stared at the blank screen for a while before I started hyperventilating.

Protip: When you don’t practice art for an extended period of time and then try to do extremely complex art with your rusty, deteriorated skills, it doesn’t go well.

I once wrote a post for Animator Island about the biggest mistake beginner animator’s make. Clearly I knew something, since I authored an article about it. An article that even details making the mistake myself in my younger days. Yet I found myself last week making that same mistake, once again. I was trying to jump into the deep end of the pool when my skills (currently dormant from lack of use) weren’t ready to handle it.

The good news is I realized it rather quickly (with some encouragement from my dear friend Ferdinand) and got back on track. Track being “go practice some simple animation and work your way back up to complex, character-drive scenes.”

At any rate, today on the blog is a reminder of what you already know. Things maybe you even suggest to other people to help them. For whatever reason, we can forget to take our own advice. Now is as good a time as any to apply what we know to ourselves!

Want a quick way to put this into practice? Give yourself advice as if you were someone else. Pretend you just came across someone in your exact situation or project. How would you advise they proceed? What should they keep in mind? Then check if you are following all the advice you would offer to that other person.

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