Attachments, Cleansing and Achievement

Elsa

Yesterday I achieved something special.

Ever since I was little I had this thing where I held attachments and had great difficulty letting go. Whether that’s letting go of past memories or physical objects it’s always been a problem. I think Autism does play a part in this but ultimately I became accustomed with this personality trait. All of this was an issue because I attached myself onto these things and I felt these memories or physical objects defined who I was when I was still finding my feet growing up.

Yesterday I decided to sort out my entire room before Christmas and I actually managed to throw out a lot of things that I haven’t used or seen for 10 years. I even gave some books and clothes to the charity shops as they were wasted in my wardrobe. I felt emotional as getting rid of things was not easy but I managed to tame my emotional attachment side and was resolute in my goal and decision.

It’s also worth pointing out as it feels appropriate that I’m only ever sad whenever I recall my younger years and childhood. In turn I’m at my happiest when I’m in the present focusing on my artwork and stories.  Why trap myself in the past where I’m living in the realm of what really matters; the present. With that in mind I decided to get rid of all the sources that link me back to my past. I partly did that throughout the years but I decided to get rid of everything whilst I was feeling motivated.

Yes it was emotional doing it but right here and now I feel cathartic and for the first time I drew my pictures and watched Match of the Day without so much as a fleeting thought.

 

Knowing not to reminisce is one thing but to put that into practice takes time and I feel I probably needed time to let go. I haven’t been able to do that until now. So, from this moment on I will not reflect on my past in my future blogs as that will defeat the object of my achievement. I will do what I’ve already been doing and that is discussing my current news, my art, anime and generally things that are relevant to me.

 

Christmas is coming and it couldn’t have come at a better time.

Thank you for reading. =)

Ryan.

 

ps, I also watched the anime film “Fireworks”. I enjoyed it very much. It was another great experience to watch an anime film at the cinema. =)

Doki Doki Festival 2017

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Yesterday I attended the Doki Doki Festival in Manchester which is a convention based on Japanese culture.

Lately I’ve been growing as an artist and for the last few months I’ve been strongly considering having my own stall at local conventions. The thought of this makes me excited and nervous as it’s a new and unknown territory for me. I don’t know the process of this or anything about it. After much deliberation I decided to go along to a local festival to see what it was all about.

It was with great fortune that around that time I discovered Doki Doki and arranged a trip with my brother to this festival. This was a very big thing for me as I rarely organise an outing.

Going into an unfamiliar place like Doki Doki came with apprehension and anxiety. The only convention I’ve been to up to this point was Kitacon but I knew nothing about Doki Doki. All I knew is that it offers Japanese culture like live music, train society and origami and of course art stalls but that was it. How did they represent their crafts? What were the stalls like? What was the building going to be like? I already made up my mind I was going, I was going to go, enjoy myself and hopefully learn a few things.

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It really was a great experience.

I didn’t know what I was expecting but it wasn’t what I expected it to be. It really was just like a convention where everyone was having fun with their friends, browsing and exploring stalls, drawing art and listen live music, not to mention Japanese cuisine which was delicious! Yum.  It was similar to Kitacon but obviously the theme was Japanese culture and not just about anime.

Initially I was overwhelmed with the hustle and bustle of the crowd and the loud music, both which are my weaknesses. Once I got used to the atmosphere, which was amazing, I felt more comfortable and started to mingle in the crowd and explore the stalls on my own. It was a huge bonus that I didn’t get lost, brownie points for me! Haha.

I was more relaxed and comfortable talking to people, a feat which actually surprised me and it’s only through reflection that I didn’t realise how relaxed I was. At past conventions I perhaps spoke and acted like a robot but I spoke naturally and the conversations weren’t forced. Perhaps it’s just me getting used to speaking to people on a regular basis? I don’t know the reason but it’s very good for my confidence.

I did eventually reach my limit and ended up becoming light-headed, which increased later, but I was determined to make the most of it so I ignored my own alarming radar and continued to bask in the Festival. =)

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I managed to talk to all the artists. They gave me a lot of advice about being an artist, how to start up and how convention works. Since yesterday I’ve been feeling very inspired and highly motivated about my own art work going forward. For years I have been searching for my own ‘purpose’ and at last I think I’ve found that in the form of an anime artist.

Everything happens for a reason and I truly believe that I could cope having my own stall at a convention. It wasn’t easy but I did well yesterday and I don’t see any reason why I can’t handle having my own stall. I’m still growing as an artist and as a person but I feel that I can see my goal. I’m going to keep doing my best, keep producing art the best art I can and see what happens. =)

 

Thanks for reading,

Ryan.^^/

November Updates

It’s now November. As soon as Halloween finished everyone started to advertise Christmas, which I wholeheartedly approve. =)

 

General News

I don’t really celebrate Halloween as passionately with Birthdays and Christmasses but I did try to get into the spirit when I played board games at my Brother’s Halloween Party. It’s always good fun but I do find myself confused with the rules. At one point I was so focused reading the rules that I accidentally knocked over my J2O all over my Brother’s cards. Whoops!

It was my Mum’s Birthday last Saturday and for her Birthday I got her Disney Crochet Patterns book and a Beauty and the Beast picture that I painted for her personally. I’m thankful that she likes it because it took me a long time to draw and colour it. It was especially difficult because Disney is not my style so it was tough to adapt, but with great fortune I managed it. =)

I watched Kingsmen: The Golden Circle at the cinema with my Brother and afterwards visited the Hard Rock Café to have drinks. That evening did take a toll on me because it was very busy with lots of people, both inside the café and around it because of the Little Mix concert.

I did embarrass myself at the bar by asking for a marshmallow J2O. Why I did this is still a mystery. Putting that aside indulging in that calming yet active atmosphere was a good experience. I wouldn’t want to go out every week but I would certainly like to come back one time to the Hard Rock Café. =)

 

Fun News

During my breaks of writing, drawing and looking after my niece I’ve been indulging on my Nights of Azure game, the second instalment, Bride of the New Moon. I’m really enjoying it. It feels a tad weird not seeing Arnice or Lilysse in it but it’s still good nonetheless.

Thanks to the previous games of the Atelier Series and the first Nights of Azure I have a firm grasp how to play the game. I have good idea the location of the plot, how to strengthen weapons, how to enhance specific items and so on. This time I bought the normal edition for the Nintendo Switch so the efforts it’s probably not as rewarding as it might be for the PlayStation 4, trophy wise, but I find it more rewarding that I’m able to progress through the storylines without online tutorials. I’m figuring everything out for myself and I can enjoy the story and gameplay without worrying about achieving the trophies in the process.

Playing it for the Switch is beneficial as I can play it anywhere. I know there’s the Vita but with Nights of Azure I’d rather play it on the Switch with a controller than on a handheld like the Vita.

In hindsight I probably should have bought the limited edition which comes with extra goods, like the DLC, but that’s not really important. What’s important is my enjoyment of the game which I’m enjoying very much.

I’m doing other things besides Nights of Azure. I’m playing Senran Kagura PBS for the PS4 and New Game! for the Vita. I practice Yoga every day and I’m reading manga/light novels before bed. I’m currently reading How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom volume 4 and just made it to chapter 5. As soon as I’ve finished reading that I’m going to read In Another World with my Smartphone volume 5. I considered reviewing all volumes from 1 to 5 in one swoop but that would be too much of a hassle so I may settle to just reviewing the newest volume if the mood strikes me. =)

 

Art News

I’m taking some time from my schedule to study some art books. I have confidence in my ability right now but studying fantastic art and artists will not only help me improve but it will inspire me more and give me clearer ideas for my future illustrations. Luckily I have ideas I’m already working on but I really want to take my time with them.

I feel I get better with every picture I draw. I can visualise the content of my pictures much clearer, and that makes me very happy.

 

I’m going to attend the Doki Doki Festival over the weekend. This will be quite a big event for me as I arranged the trip to go there with my brother. It’s the complete unknown and I am somewhat apprehensive about it but ultimately I think we will enjoy it. =)

Thanks for reading.^^/

Ryan.

September Updates

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Hello everyone, I wanted to share my latest updates.

2017 is certainly moving through the seasons rather quickly, at least for me. I see this as a good thing as I’m choosing to enjoy life rather than worry about the flow of time. =)

 

I have watched three films at the cinema in the past month and that is rather adventurous for me. I watched Spiderman Homecoming twice and the anime film, Your Name.

I’m used to watching Marvel films at the cinema but I’ve never watched an anime film on the big screen before so admittedly I was apprehensive. When I was invited to watch the latter I did panic and didn’t think rationally but in the end I decided to go and watch it. I’m glad I did. Your Name isn’t my kind of genre, I don’t usually like drama-twisting plots or tear-jerking moments but it is a beautiful film with a lovely story. The graphics and sound were especially spectacular. I wouldn’t watch it again but watching this on the big screen was a very memorable experience.

Sometimes you have to ignore the roadblocks to reach the end of the destination and that was what I did and what I will always continue to do. Some days are harder than others, and this was one of those times. ^^/

 

My personal projects are going very well and I will unveil some of them over the next few weeks. I really enjoyed drawing requests and I found it rewarding knowing that I’m making people happy with my pictures. However I stopped accepting requests because I wanted to focus on drawing illustrations for myself.

 

WORKS IN PROGRESS

  • Sketches: I have a lot of messy and clean sketches to share which I have completed over course of the months. I will eventually share them online.
  • Anime Girls: I’m cracking on with the “Anime Girls” theme and have several near completion. Aletta and Kuro from Restaurant to Another World, Rem and Hestia, and Arma from In Another World with my Smartphone. I’ve also sketched Grayfia from High School DxD but that still needs tweaking and won’t be finished for a good while.
  • Original Characters: Following Cherub I created a batch of characters. These will take a while to complete because I want to study the profiles of each lady before I publish them online. I am in the midst of inking another Gaia illustration so that will probably be done in the next few weeks depending on my schedule.
  • Comic: I’m very excited about this experimental project and I can’t wait to unveil it. =)
  • Akeno: I’m working on a picture that features Akeno Himejima. I’m in the process of deciding on a background. I’m also excited about this picture.

 

I’m really enjoying all of my projects but none more so than my comic and Akeno. =)

 

I hope September treats you all kindly, thanks for reading. =)

Ryan.^^/

My Birthday 2017

It was my Birthday a few of days ago and I had a wonderful day.

I received nice Birthday messages, thoughtful cards and wonderful presents. The highlight of the day, I must say, is when my two year old Niece said to me “Happy Birthday Bro” because she calls me Uncle Bro. She’s very sweet and clever.

I don’t like a huge fuss or be the centre of attention I just like to spend a quiet peaceful day with my family. I woke up very early so I spent some time in my summer house editing one of my stories whilst listening to the birds singing. During the day I played Mario Kart with all my family and we then stayed up to the early hours watching One Punch Man. It’s fortunate we’re fans of the show and was worth the lack of sleep, haha.

A tad off subject but just thought to bring up something I recently learned about myself, how I used to fear failure.

This fact is important because it explains my thoughts, my obsession with being perfect and having a spotless record in every academic subject and emotional stress that extends back to my childhood. It’s only these past couple of years that I became more laid back and started to accept my weaknesses and being open to making mistakes. Yoga and Art helped me to make peace with my fear that isn’t really such a fear anymore, more of a dislike.

Back on subject- I had a wonderful day. It’s going to be an upheaval task trying to remember that I’m 29 but then again age isn’t really important, it’s more about how you feel. =)

 

Thanks for reading. =)

Ryan.^^/

2 Years

From time to time I look at my older art and with some of them I think “you could have done that better,” and I’m confident I would. This doesn’t mean I’m not proud of my past works though, I see them as progress to the artist I am now. They remind me how I started and where I was 2 years ago.

 

So much has happened since then. I was excited when one of my pictures received one view but now, since the beginning of the year, I’ve been receiving dozens of requests. It’s the sort of thing I didn’t think could happen, the idea never truly entered my head as a possibility. I’m still amazed by it all, even when I’m receiving requests now. =)

 

I decided to take a break from requests for the time being as I’ve been working on multiple backlogs since Christmas and I’ve also had spells of being unwell perhaps due to tiredness. I have taken a couple of short breaks between requests but have now decided to take a longer break to “recharge my batteries”. I do love my drawings I just think I’ve been a bit over-enthusiastic and perhaps not rested as much as I should have.

 

I hope to produce a picture to celebrate my own personal achievement for the last two years. My initial achievement was being brave enough to share my very first picture publicly but now the other achievement is making others happy with my drawings. =)

 

Thanks for your support, everyone.^^/

May Updates

Aoba x Hifumi

Hello.

Here I am, reporting in my monthly update.

Not so long ago I chipped a tooth and booked an appointment to get it checked. I was somewhat anxious as it would be my first ever filing… or so I thought. My Dentist told me my “chipped tooth” was in perfect condition with a tiny scrape at the top. I felt much better after this, I was anxious over nothing. =)

For the past few weeks I’ve been very poorly. I was suffering with bad dizzy spells to the point where I couldn’t draw and lost my balance whenever I walked. On top of that I caught a cold in the process.

I wondered if it was because I had been drinking decaf tea for over a week as opposed to my normal regular tea, so I switched to regular tea… only to experience no sleep that very same night. The dizzy spells seemed to have disappeared though. Haha!

I’m more or less better now I just need to rest more and sleep better. I do feel up to drawing more requests so I’ll resume them this evening. =)

Thanks for reading. =)

Ryan.^^/

PS, I’m learning Japanese, more specifically Kana. I now understand the difference between Hiragana, Katakana and Kanji. Hurray. =)

How Manga Changed My Life

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Over the last couple of years reading manga has become a really enjoyable hobby.

I’ve always struggled with reading since I was little, it’s difficult to put into words but I basically struggled to take in the information of the text which proved to be an uphill task when I was a University student. Luckily I had very understanding tutors who made my education very easy and enjoyable.

Around the time I graduated from Uni I got into manga and I must say I found it life-changing. After years of searching for reading material I found it in the form of manga. Suddenly I went from struggling to read one page to reading and enjoying literally dozens of manga and light novels.

Not only am I enjoying these stories as a fan but they’re helping me in the professional field as an artist and as an author. It may not seem much but it’s a very big deal to me and I’m very thankful that publishers like Seven Seas, Yen Press and everyone else exist to license and publish the manga that we all know and love. I’m also thankful for the Amazon Kindle, because I’m able to read and store so many manga volumes in one little device. =)

To give you a rough idea what I read, I’ll list 13 random Manga/Light Novels I’m currently reading while summarising my thoughts for each of them. =)

 

MY READING LIST

  1. Bloom into You (Seven Seas)

Volumes: 1

Yuu and Touko’s friendship started off simple but it develops deeper when they learn more about each other. They could become a lovely couple without drama but that quip made by Yuu’s Dad could be a hint of troubles to come. I don’t know why he would have a problem of Yuu having a girlfriend but the fact remains that if Yuu harbours those feelings it would put her in a tight spot.

 

2. Dragons Rioting (Yen Press)

Volumes: 4

This story is definitely unique, especially the circumstances with Rintaro. This is one of my favourite manga and it makes me sad a little that it’s never received an anime adaptation.

 

3. Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? (YenPress)

Light Novel Volumes: 7

Manga Volume: 6

Sword Oratoria Light Novel Volumes: 2

The first Light Novel I’ve ever read. I like reading all about Bell’s journey and how he overcomes his mistakes and trials in and outside the dungeon. I especially adore his relationship with Hestia, they’re like a young married couple.

 

4. Kampfer (Digital Manga Publishing)

Manga Volumes: 3

I liked the anime and took the opportunity to read it on my kindle. Although I’m enjoying the manga it is difficult to ignore the quality of the pages, especially when I have to zoom in to read the dialogue.

 

5. Kiss and White Lily for my Dearest Girl (YenPress)

Volumes: 1

So far the contrast of love and hate between Ayaka and Yurine is adorable and I sense it’s gradually blossoming into a beautiful relationship. Ayaka buying flowers for her “rival” is a sweet touch and proves that deep down she cares about her future girlfriend. 😉

 

6. KonoSuba: God’s Blessing on this Wonderful World! (YenPress)

Manga Volumes: 2

Light Novel Volumes: 1

An absolutely hilarious story and I like how it’s written in the books. It doesn’t go into detail it just delves right into the plot, and that’s what I especially like about it. If there’s one thing that does disappoint me, slightly unrelated, is how the anime crew didn’t adapt Wiz’s introduction scene. It doesn’t detract from the overall enjoyment, just a thought that came to mind. =)

 

7. My Big Sister Lives in a Fantasy World (J-Novel Club)

Manga Volumes: 3

I’m happy that more Light Novels are being published in English. I’m currently up to the part in volume 3 where Yoriko prevented Aiko from digging her fangs into Yuichi’s neck. This is an easy to read book and like KonoSuba and Re:Zero it has that air of self-awareness of manga cliché that seems to be the modern and current manga cliché.

 

8. Oh My Goddess! (Dark Horse Comics)

Volume: 1

Reading the first book makes me appreciate the era it debuted in, I find the story and the fashion very fascinating. Belldandy is such a beautiful Goddess, if I was Keiichi I’d ask her to stay with me as well! I also appreciate the references made by KonoSuba, especially the fateful encounter between Kazama and Aqua.

 

9. One-Punch Man (VizMedia)

Manga Volumes: 11

One-Punch Man, or as my Auntie calls him, “One Punch Baldy Man,” haha. I got my family hooked on Non Non Biyori and now I got them all hooked on the anime and given time, the manga too. 😉

The concept of this manga is wonderfully different and I find it inspiring as an artist how Yusuke Murata and One met and turned the franchise into a massively well-earned product. =)

 

10. Please Tell Me! Galko-Chan (Seven Seas)

Volumes: 2

Seeing a manga with colourful pages is very refreshing on the eyes. =) The simplicity of the story is nice too. I especially like how diverse and friendly the classmates are with each other, especially Galko and Otako. =)

 

11. See Me After Class (Project-H)

Volumes: 2

I never dreamed that this would ever get a license and I’m delighted that it did. =D This story is very humorous and makes me chuckle every time I re-read the volumes. It’s a tad disappointing that volume 3 keeps getting back-dated but it makes me look forward to it more. =)

 

12. The Testament of New Sister Devil (Seven Seas)

Volumes: 5

I keep on comparing this with High School DxD, I see many similarities yet major differences.

This harem story is visually appealing but one of my favourite moments is when Basara and his group battled against the heroes that filled one whole volume. Fan-service was not needed because the story and climax of that battle was very engaging. =)

 

13. Witchcraft Works (Vertical)

Volumes: 6

I love expressionless girls like Ayaka, I think her kind of characters tend to be funnier when they deal with situations with a monotone face. Haha. I like her relationship with Honoka and I find it fascinating how he was initially a girl before the story came to fruition.

 

MY PLAN TO READ LIST (10 Selected)

  1. Akashic Records of the Bastard Magical Instructor (Seven Seas)
  2. Anti-Magic Academy: The 35th Test Platoon (Seven Seas)
  3. Flying Witch (Vertical)
  4. Grenadier (VizMedia)
  5. Hybrid x Heart (YenPress)
  6. Monster Girl Doctor (Seven Seas)
  7. My Wife is Wagatsuma-San (Kodansha)
  8. The Testament of Sister New Devil Storm (Seven Seas)
  9. To LOVE-Ru (Seven Seas)
  10. Yokai Girls (Seven Seas)

Thank you for reading. =)

Ryan.^^/

My 2017 Goals

It’s a new start to a new year and I have a mind-set that’s fresh and clear. I’m already feeling positive vibes from 2017 and I’m well underway with my goals for this year.

 

Socialising and Going Out

A lot has happened throughout my life. I always struggle with crowds but things are becoming easier overtime, especially with my new mind-set. I’ve accepted my weaknesses and limitations now but I persevere when I need to, both for myself and for everyone else. Despite my anxiety going out I do feel that I’m actually a people’s person and I often find myself putting everyone’s feelings ahead of my own.

I will try to go out more but only under the right circumstances. It’s all about dealing with each moment when it’s presented to me rather than analyse possible future events.

 

My Stories

For years I’ve been writing and making amendments for my children’s story and right now its under-going another editing process. I’ve completed the first book a good number of times but it was never quite ready to be published. As a result I’ve often lost motivation and lacked ideas to change. However, this is definitely the most successful editing process I’ve ever done for this story.

I’ve polished my writing style and grammar-correcting a lot and I have to thank reading different manga and light novels for that. The only materials I can read are manga and light novels but it really does go to show that no matter what genre you read, reading makes you grow as a writer.

 

Anime Art

I’ve changed my attitude and approach to my anime art and decided to take extra time to complete each art successfully. Last year I did get in the unfortunate habit of putting a time limit on each picture. Now I have the philosophy of illustrating at my own pace which goes hand in hand with my new mind-set for this year. You could say it’s a new beginning with a better approach and from now on I will emphasize quality over quantity.

 

My Current Works in Progress

-Requests (I’m undertaking around 10 requests and nearly completed 1)

-New Game! (This is a comic style landscape that features Aoba and Hifumi)

-Gaia: Mother Goddess (a more refined version of my own character, Gaia the Elf Goddess)

-Darkness (a single portrait of the masochist knight that could feature a few versions in different clothes)

-Valentine’s Day picture (to be revealed)

-Ai-Chan (going to attempt to shade Ai-Chan in the blue chrome shading style and see how I get on)

-Keijo x One Punch Man Comic (a crossover comic that is set in the One Punch Man universe but stars Nozomi and Non from Keijo)

 

I’m enjoying all these drawings right now and I can’t wait to see how they turn out in the end. 2017 will be a great year. =)

 

Thanks for reading. =)

Ryan.^^/

Manga Girls

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Some of you may already know but I’ve created a theme called “Manga Girls” where I draw girls in black and white but colour in their hair and eyes. The idea appealed to me when I finished drawing Nozomi from Love Live! in this way and decided that I wanted to carry on this theme but under the bracket, “Manga Girls.” =)

 

I do feel that I’ve come a long way with my manga art and I do think that I keep getting better, especially when it comes to backgrounds and shading the character. I think this is because I’m choosing to take my time with one picture rather than try and cram five pictures into one day. If I don’t complete one picture today, I can look forward to completing it tomorrow, as Saitama would say “I’ll leave tomorrow’s problems to tomorrow’s me.” =)

 

I’ve got a huge list of which girls to do but I feel that it’s important for me that I don’t overwhelm myself. In the past I tried to give myself projects and it always ended badly because I gave myself way too much work to start and finish. However, I feel that this time around I’m confident enough that I will continue this theme. I created a spreadsheet in which I prioritise certain pictures and put them in categories based on importance.

 

With this system in place I don’t feel pressure, I don’t get into a head mush and I feel no signs of overwhelming myself. I almost feel like I can take on requests but there’s something about the word “request” that daunts me so I avoid drawing pictures for others unless it’s for family. I don’t mind if friends, fellow users or people suggest ideas to me of who to draw next but I know I would feel pressure if I did a “commission.”

 

This is the list of Manga Girls that I’ve done so far

Nozomi Toujou – Love Live! School Idol Project

Nozomi Kaminashi – Keijo!!!!!!!!

Tiona Hiryute – Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon?

Rias Gremory – High School DxD

Nel Tu – Bleach x Monster Musume

 

If you have any ideas of which girl to draw next in this theme, please feel free to suggest them. You can contact me on various sites, comment below or even drop me an email.

 

Thanks for Reading. =)

Ryan.^^/