New Years Reflections

Tagged: meta

The year whipped on by. It was a big year for me, in many ways. I turned 30. I achieved a goal I have had for quite some time - to live in a new place( see: Montrealº). I spent a lot of time drawing and toward the end of the year - painting. I have many things to be greatful for here (and for those who are reading this that know me personally, I'm certainly greatful for you :) ).

Alright.

As usual, I'm very ambitious at the beginning of the year.

Here's what I aimed for in 2021.

  • [ ] [#A] Draw everyday

  • [ ] [#A] practice french everyday

  • [ ] Go sailing

  • [ ] stop reading hackernews everyday

  • [ ] try "how to draw" by scott robertson

  • [X] Make a game

  • [X] Live in a french speaking place

  • [X] read > 13 books

Things went pretty well! I managed to draw almost everyday, and probably did french flashcards throughout about 80% of the year. I am still addicted to hackernews, and I still want to stop reading it, but I also recognize that it gives me a break / something to do when I need to relax.

And here's what I've got lined up for 2022! It's pretty packed, so hopefully I will have the good health and support to be able to pursue some of these goals!

As it stands with new years goals / resolutions / ambitions - I usually set a lot of them. I never expect myself to complete them, but they serve as a reflection of what I want from a point in time. I like to set them, and to reflect on previous ones.

So, here we go.

Do one Digital painting everyday.

Since about four or five weeks ago I've managed to paint something pretty much every day. I've started posting these creations - I hope I can keep this up. I think it's my most ambitious but also most desired things to do. I would love to see my painting skills get better - and no matter how much I read art instruction books - I just need to paint and draw. A lot.

I've started posting my practicing over on Instagram (until I find a social network / posting place that's better).

French Flashcards 85%/year (292/365 days).

Rather than aim to do flashcards everyday, at this point in my learning french journey I would be happy with getting around 70-80% of the year covered. I actually enjoy doing flashcards - and it makes for a nice morning routine with my coffee.

Complete "how to draw" by scott robertson.

Ah, I didn't even start this one last year. How to draw is probably going to be the most complicated, dense, but perhaps most helpful text I could apply myself to (well, there are a lot of others, but in terms of what's available to me at the moment). Today I went out and bought a large 8x10 sketchbook just for practicing (no being precious with this one!) to kick things off tomorrow. I've heard there's a lot of content, and it's not simple, so I'm going to give myself the entire year (again) to try and work through it.

Stop reading hackernews (Except for weekly digest).

Already mentioned above, but I hope I can curb some of the time I spend on hackernews - or more so, that I can just relax and do nothing rather than distract myself with my phone and reading comments from random people (even though they are often insightful and useful, it's more that I am noticing that I am not allowing myself to be bored, to be away from the phone, etc).

Read 15+ books

I definitely need to read more before bed. Said it last year, saying it again this year. This is part of my desire to have less screen time in my life, and to, hopefully, improve my sleep.

Finish and release Firn (done)

Midway through the fall I got curious about rebuilding Firnº in Rust. So I started doing that. It's almost done - and I should really just ship it out there. I'm being a bit picky about what it needs before being released because technically it is full of breaking changes...but I should just get it out there. The fact that people are actually using it (I think, two, that I know of, ha!) makes it harder to ship it when some things still aren't tidy/working at the same caliber as the early prototype.

Quarterly Projects

I'm thinking about trying something new - doing quarterly projects. I generally dislike the word "quarter/ly" because it immediately makes me think of business. Regardless, this will be new to me because I tend to work on more than one thing in parallel - this keeps me stimulated and having fun, especially when one project becomes a slog.

Instead, I'll try devoting three months straight to a project and see if I can get it done. Already I find this a bit intimidating (which is not good in terms of wanting to have a healthy relationship with a hobby), but I also desire to be more in tune with how I'm spending my time - and not getting carried away refining a project forever (see: Firn) and making it something more than I originally intended it to be.

Note: I think that I might allow myself an escape hatch: if a project is going horribly after the first month - I will put put it down and use the remaining two months to start on the next project.

Anyway, this will probably require that I sit down and plan out the project at the beginning of the quarter and really trying to gauge how much work I can do accurately. I've been tracking my time for a lot of what I do using this wiki for quite a while now, so I'm hopeful that some of the existing data might be useful.

Here are some possible projects I might choose this year (subject to change).

January-March: Make a game

I've had an idea kicking around for a while that feels a little more true to my artistic intentions than some of the other game prototypes I've made.

April-June: Cooking website: "galley"

I'd like to rebuild Ari's Gardenº to be a database backed application that can be collaborative. If this works, the end result it would be a more robust recipe sharing website with several niceties that would improve quality of life when it comes to picking, cooking from, shopping for, and sharing of recipes.

July-Sept: Ios Midi music app

I've been spending some time learning Swift because I'd like to also rebuild another old project - Laundromatº This time, I'd actually like to wrap it up in the ios ecosystem and make something that works with AUM. I've got a few ideas kicking around. I think this will be rather challenging as it will be a new sandbox (swift/ios programming), as well as dealing with audio/midi libraries I know nothing about, and then ui/graphics on top of it. I'm excited!

Oct-Dec: Painting Project?

I'm not sure what this might be, but I'm hoping that toward the end of the year, especially if I can do a bit of digital painting everyday I might be more confident toward doing a few paintings in some sort of theme.

Wrapping up

Well, I've never done something like this - writing it all out before. It sounds incredibly ambitious - and in a way a bit nerve wracking. On the other hand, it's also exhilerating. I don't know - you can read into whatever that means about my personality.

I have not included anything about my personal goals for mental and physical health as they are more private - but don't worry - that stuff is just as far at the top of the list as these goals written here are.