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Finding time for your art growth and development

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ChrisTheArtist polycounter lvl 4
I have a question for professionals and amateurs alike. How do you guys find the time do you art and improve when you work part time that’s draining the life and time out of you? I want to improve the quality of my work but I hardly have the time anymore and I need to time to get better. I need money to start my independence but I need to make my career happen not just for money but for the sake of my passion. I’d like to here you guy’s struggle or resolution. 

Also my latest work is the stylized character for my portfolio but it’s still a work in progress and has been for the last few months. Gonna work on something realistic next lol if I have the time. Will get the full shot if I have time

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  • Ashervisalis
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    Ashervisalis grand marshal polycounter
    At my previous job, I was only working 4 days a week in order to give myself time to work on art. I would work on art for 2 hours a day after work, and then 8+ hours per day Friday to Sunday. A lot of the time I would reject friends because I needed to spend more time working on my portfolio. My social life was not very great for about 2 to 3 years. My last job was putting numbers into a computer, which was so boring and life draining, it pushed me to work on my stuff every day. You're already part time, so it just looks like you have an issue with incentivizing yourself. Honestly, I suggest getting a coffee machine, that's what helped me power through so many times.
  • Spag_Eddy
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    Spag_Eddy greentooth
    Start practicing healthy daily habits (eating right, quality sleep, exercising, no alcohol, BREATHING, etc.) so you can get your mind healthy and strong, and start doing everything you can to prioritize your free time so that you're focusing and staying committed to your art outside of the life-draining job you're currently in. Maybe try to find a simpler, less-draining job? This isn't an easy path and you'll probably have to make many changes and sacrifices to your daily life if you want to succeed and get to where you want to be. No more excuses about being too tired and playing video games instead, no more Friday night happy hours at Chadwicks with the fellers and fellerettes, no more karate in the kitchen...er, that one is probably fine. Anyway, If this is something you understand and are comfortable with, then start making these changes and start pushing yourself and pursuing the shit out of this passion of yours! 

    I've been, and continue to be, where you are. I know how exhausting and defeating it can be. I haven't had time for any hobbies or relationships for a couple years now and it is often very mentally/emotionally draining. But if you love something and want it enough, you will put yourself through whatever hell and challenges it takes to achieve it, and you'll never give up until that bitch is yours! Imagine where you want to be in a few years, and as you get older, and put in the necessary work/struggle NOW so you can get to that point and eventually be at peace and happiness! In the early days of my own 3D art journey, I kept having visions/fears of ending up old and bitter and stuck in the career that I was at the time in, one that had me completely burnt-out, and looking back with regret that I wasted time not pursuing something I loved instead. That fear really kicked my ass into gear big time and motivated the hell out of me to get my shit together and start taking whatever steps necessary to start focusing more on pursuing my artsy fartsy dreams. It hasn't been an easy road, I have lost a lot and have experienced a lot of pain along the way, but I keep the endgame in mind and believe it will all be worth it. 

    It just takes a strong will and determination. And a clear vision of who and what you want to be. Oh, and as Ashervisalis stated, coffee. Coffee is your friend. Don't forget coffee. Once you have all the ingredients, mix 'em all together into a concoction that you can use to excite and drive you towards your goals! Most people never put in the hard work and effort it takes to to chase their dreams, and that is a truly sad thing. We only get one life, so take the necessary steps and make it awesome before it's too late!
  • Brian "Panda" Choi
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    Brian "Panda" Choi high dynamic range
    My anger at my situation while I was working a month and a half at a groundskeeping gig in Sammamish, Washington got me pissed off enough to work on side contracts like with Camoflauj so I can get out of the the stupid situation I was in.

    Granted, I was in Washington originally for what ended-up feeling like a botched Microsoft contract.
  • Larry
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    Larry interpolator
    I was working split hours full time as a salesman (9:00-14:00 then 17:00-21:00 every day + saturdays) i couldnt do this so i asked to cut my hours in half in order to do 3d and work at the field. After half a year i saw that working part time and trying to do 3d still wasn't viable, the same way you described. I was personally lucky that i had financial support and quit my job to focus entirely on 3d. But there are practises you can try, every person has to find their own way. You have to train your passion, and if you want this more than other kinds of jobs, you must explore and find which path suits you personally.

    There are a few things I do that help me keep moving forward.

    When I don't have a project or when I have no more motivation to do 3d, i just play games and do my hobbies. It's important to get your dose 
    of happiness, you're a human not a working robot. Even the best job in the world has it's bad moments when you need to take a chill pill.

    I had a daily schedule where I told myself I would do at least 2-3-4 hour sessions doing 3d, and gradually increase it. The reason for this would be that you're gonna be working 8+ hours on 3d if you get a job on that so I didn't want to "force" myself staying for 8 hours "working", instead i want to happily work this amount of time. And it does take time and practise, to turn your hobby and passion into a job.

    Sometimes I redirect my anger towards making 3d. Personal stuff like my family thinking 3d is not meant for job but as a hobby, people saying saying games are immature and stuff like that. It motivates me to prove them wrong and rub it in their face afterwards, maybe with a small middle finger. There were many times i opened my 3d software just because of that.

    Join artstation challenges with the intention to win (like planning your strenghts, weaknesses and how can you manipulate your project and get the best result you can, with some room for exploration).There is one coming up on the 7th, try to join! I really believed I had a chance for honorable mentions in king arthur's challenge and that pushed me to do even better work, even more work, and learn tons of stuff in a little amount of time. I exceeded my expectations in some areas but in others i shot myself in the foot for example time management. Lot's of things will improve. I didn't get a honorable mention :)

    Last but not least, compare your work with recent game's graphics but don't punish yourself; That is your goal and not the judging criteria. The judging criteria would be your previous work. I always feel the improvement when i compare my latest work with the previous ones, especially my first one >.< I'm like, hey, look at how far you've come the last 1,2,3 years!

    It's a phase and i believe you'll get over it :) when uncertain of things, just do stuff, or just do the parts of the 3d pipeline you feel good about e.g. just modeling, no need to do the UV's, or sculpting without remeshing etc
  • ChrisTheArtist
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    ChrisTheArtist polycounter lvl 4
    Thank you all so much for your feedback and you’ll be happy to know that since holidays are beginning to end my hours are being cut and I have more time to work on 3D and focus on my career and growth!
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