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Xiwo Xerase

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About Xiwo Xerase

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    Apprentice Paint Magician

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  1. I prefer paper books to e-books but I won't deny the benefit of e-books (or that I've spent a lot of money at DTRPG). I love the feel of writing with fountain pens but I never took the time to develop good handwriting, so the benefits of this are questionable. I find I take better notes with pen and paper than I do with a text editor. However, I also never took the time in school to learn how to properly take notes, so I'm still learning how to do this.
  2. Troubleshooting. Most of the time, I just ask for an explanation and then start asking questions. Sometimes this ends poorly because I ask about things that people have decided definitely can't be the problem. (And, lo and behold, guess what?) To be fair to them, I've done that before. After the second time talking to my DSL provider where the problem really was "Reboot the modem", I've tried to avoid preempting anyone trying to help me. I do, however, get annoyed when we've verified something can't be the problem and the technician keeps checking it again and again. "No, sir, this setting has not changed over the past three minutes. May I suggest something else?"
  3. The more I learn, the more I believe impostor syndrome is either out of scope or it's potentially the tip of an iceberg that will cause the scope to expand significantly. Since I would only have three months to work on this, I'm inclined to limit the scope and focus on painter's block. What do you think? Please note: I believe impostor syndrome is present in the community and I believe someone should say something to increase awareness. I'm just not sure that I am the right person for this and/or that I have the time to do this justice, especially since I am not a therapist, nor do I know any therapists.
  4. Another alternative would be as a workshop. Either of these options are beyond my personal ability at the moment. (I can't think of the appropriate activities for a workshop. I don't know that I could find enough people to sit on a panel - especially when I expect this to run at the same time as many other classes.) I'm also not sure they're still taking class submissions for this year. I just sent an email asking if they are.
  5. I find giving a talk in front of people to be easy compared to going up to a single person and introducing myself. I don't usually have similar issues in online communities (although it did take me two or three days to post my introduction on these forums). I wonder if it has something to do with perceived vulnerability. I know the hardest part of giving a talk is giving the pitch - not the pitch itself but submitting it and making myself vulnerable to rejection or whatever may happen.
  6. On one hand, I agree. On the other hand, I suspect this is the sort of thing people would benefit from knowing, but they may not know they want it. The hunt for the snazzy title continues! I hadn't thought of that for some reason and now I'm getting flashbacks. Thanks! (Seriously! This isn't purple!) As I've thought about it this morning, I feel like the focus should be on building momentum or, more accurately, how to deal with things that threaten our momentum. Every day we sit down to paint, we build momentum, both in terms of actually painting minis and in terms of improving how we paint minis. But our momentum is easily jeopardized by forces internal and external to ourselves. Some external forces are within our control to change. For example, we can negotiate a dedicated space to paint at regularly or find a painting setup we can set up and tear down quickly. We can negotiate dedicated painting time with our partners or housemates. However, many external forces are beyond our control, e.g. overtime for work, having to fix the house/the car/the inkjet printer, etc., and all we can do is try to mitigate the effects and serenely accept the rest. The focus then is on internal forces, because they are within our control and are likely the forces most likely to jeopardize our momentum. These include "Resistance" and impostor syndrome. These keep us from painting altogether or from trying new, harder techniques or from trying our hardest or from talking to our peers to get feedback. The solution is to identify and then address the forces that keep us from painting. This involves being mindful of yourself and your painting. For example: Know your physical and emotional state and act accordingly. (Want to frustrate the hell out of yourself? Paint eyes when you're tired.) If you're no longer inspired by a mini, put it down and work on another one for a while. Allow yourself to paint minis "just to tabletop" even if you're an award-winning painter. Allow yourself to know that every mini will look like crap at some point in its painting time and that this phase will pass. Allow yourself to fail when trying a new technique. Allow yourself to not be as good as other painters. If you want to try something new on a mini you've just spent a bunch of time on, try practicing it on another mini first. (Bones minis are inexpensive and are good for this!) Keep a positive attitude and avoid negative terms, even if they're standard terms in the hobby. For example, instead of the "shelf of shame", call it the "shelf of lost love". Know what can stress you out about your painting or your painting environment and avoid situations that cause stress. For example, if having too many minis on your shelf of lost love stresses you out, take minis off that shelf. (For example, either by finishing the mini or by giving it away.) If you're not sure how to paint a mini or which mini to paint next, look for inspiration. Be introspective if you're not having fun painting. (Why aren't you having fun? What can you do to have fun?) And probably more! (One problem I struggle with here is: I can tell someone these things but I'm not sure how to help someone do these things (or if I can!).) So I like the idea of momentum as a motif and incorporating it into the title. (If this were an IT talk, it'd probably mention "sustaining velocity". Let's avoid that.) I also like the idea of "joy" as a motif, but I think momentum is the stronger one here. "Building Mini Painting Momentum: Overcoming and Avoiding Painter's Block" maybe? Still doesn't feel snazzy enough. More thought needed.
  7. I feel like I barely know you but I'll miss you too. Maybe this will be a better community for you when the world ceases to be on fire quite so much.
  8. It was Monday. It was also a little rough for a Monday, but some of that was leftover from the weekend. I once restored a server’s hard drive by swapping out the drive’s controller card and then copying the drive’s contents, sector-by-sector, to a new drive. I still lost some data due to bad sectors on the drive but that was expected. I forget what analogy I used for this at the time. Maybe it was a quilting analogy. Anyway, it wasn’t fun and was another time I spent almost the entire night working. (If I remember correctly, I took a nap around 4 am, woke up around 5:15 am to catch a bus home so I could shower, change, and then catch a bus back to the office.) I proved I can do it but I never, ever want to do that again. (Moral of the story: Monitor your RAID volumes. Monitor your backups. Make sure your boss gives you the time to set up this monitoring.)
  9. This is something that concerns me as well. I feel like, when I started posting here, I got more helpful advice but that’s no longer the case. What I don’t know is why. Possible reasons I’ve come up with include: The community has changed, with the more helpful or expert painters moving on to other venues or no longer having the time to provide feedback. The unspoken rules of the community have changed and critical feedback is no longer perceived as worthwhile. My ability as a painter has improved to the point where fewer people feel qualified to provide critical feedback. I suspect it’s a combination of the first and third, and possibly something I haven’t thought of. (For some reason, I find the third option the most frightening.) I know I normally don’t critique because: I tend to review the WIP and Show Off forums during brief periods of downtime at work, so I don’t have time to view minis with a critical eye. I have not spent the time to develop a critical eye for miniatures, so I may not see what improvements should be made. (I think I’m getting better on this...) I don’t feel comfortable doing so. I feel like it’s not my place because I perceive myself to be a mediocre painter at best. Maybe I (we?) should spend more time looking at minis to provide more (and useful) feedback.
  10. Hm. How do you tell if something is caused by impostor syndrome, social anxiety, or both? Both times I've even put forth the idea of speaking in front of people, I've been nervous about doing so. (Although, the last time, I did end up speaking in front of people and it wasn't bad... The hard part is being comfortable enough to start talking. And then the hard part is stopping talking...) I wonder if I'm going to regret this. We'll find out!
  11. (Those of you on Discord will see a slightly earlier version of what's below.) I have been considering the following class (well, talk) proposal for ReaperConLive: "Improving as a Mini Painter" (title to be refined). The actual technique advice isn't the point. ("How do you improve as a painter? Spend time painting.") It's more about things like identifying what keeps you from painting (e.g. impostor syndrome and what Pressfield calls "Resistance" in The War of Art), overcoming it, finding inspiration, etc. More the psychology of painting rather than the practice. Do you believe this would be useful to you or others? Is this idea worth pursuing and refining? (Has someone already beaten me to the topic?) Alternate title ideas: "Motion Over Inertia: Becoming a Better Mini Painter"; "Overcoming Painter's Block"
  12. To the best of my knowledge: All of the 17xxx SKUs were associated with extras from the Bones 4 kickstarter. These were released in KS packaging (i.e. sealed plastic bags) rather than in retail packaging. (As of the time of writing, 17341: Rauthuros is the only 17xxx SKU remaining in the store.) I suspect the 17xxx SKUs were disabled either when the stock ran out or when retail packaging went into development.
  13. I'm... "okay." I originally said more here but it's more complaining than anything productive. Stay safe.
  14. I got to paint maybe three or four hours this week. The rest of the leathers have shadows and highlights. The shoulder ridges have bright highlights that need to be brought down but that happens. (click on the images for larger versions) I still need to fix her right eye. The left side of her face has a blemish that should be fixed too. Otherwise, it's furs, cords, stitches, metals, and the base left. I was hoping to finish this mini in May but, alas, it was not to be. (How am I ever going to paint my hoard if it takes weeks to paint minis?)
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