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Hello everyone! Welcome to the brave new frontier that is two thousands and one additional sweet seventeen!

First of all, obligatory list of apologies:
-sorry I've been gone so long
-sorry I've missed all of your artwork, journals, statuses, etc.
-sorry I'm not able to give the time to participate these days (especially pertinent for my beloved autodesk-sketchbook peepsicles)
-sorry I left the oven on when I left
-sorry for not saying sorry sooner
-sorry for saying sorry too much
-sorry etc
-sorry inc.
I'M JUST SORRY OKAY?!

However, the time away has been a good time for me. While the rest of humanity was tearing itself to pieces over it's imminent self-annihilation whilst wrestling a burning tentacled creature from the depths, smothered in crap, with knives raining down in every conceivable direction on a frozen lake wearing high heels (or as it will be remembered, 2016), I had a pretty good second half of the year! Work really picked up, I've been lucky enough to have forged some good relationships with some awesome clients, and I'm pretty much swamped doing the art thing. I mean don't get me wrong, I still need to find a way to either increase my rates, get higher paid jobs, or start a cloning farm selling grade A human organs to survive in the long term off this whole art gig, especially living in one of the most expensive countries on the whole goddamned planet. But still, it's happening; the hard work is paying off, finally.

I've not had the time to spend ruminating on social media or getting down about why my art isn't as good as x or why I don't get x number of likes or followers (or gentle, relaxing shoulder massages on public transport (on second thoughts, ew)), like I used to (and we're all prone to these days). Those of you who know me probably already know I'm not that enamoured over social media and such anyway (unpopular, unexciting, 30 something white hetero guys who draw cartoons tend not to be. Go figure), but this past spell has proven to me that I can, without doubt, CONCLUSIVELY say that all of it is bullshit. Total, unapologetically unimportant, time wasting bullshit. Social media numbers won't employ you, or give you success or financial stability; unless you want to start a kickstarter. Or patreon. Or you just, ya know, need to evaluate your success as a human being based on a meaningless value presented to you by a super corporation's mega meta stat tracker. In which case, discount my advice. I'd love to be in the super popular crowd and i don't resent anybody else's popularity. It's all cool with me. But I'm a person for whom a negative environment is toxic. Like a sponge; other people's constant negativity makes me brooding and withdrawn. And that's the other side of social media that comes part and parcel; of the obsession for popularity. Hence why I've stopped using Twitter altogether. That place is the breeding ground of toxic ignorance and negativity (just my opinion, other human's experiences may vary).

The most important thing I've learned in this time though; the thing that I most attribute to any small steps I've made from hopeless starving artist to...well slightly less hopeless, starving artist; is this: STOP BEING A BIG EFFING PUSSY AND JUST GODDAMNED DO IT (©Nike? :shrug:). Opportunities won't come to you (well, they may, but it's not as likely as people think). You have to find them. Relentlessly. Also, I've stopped wanting to draw like everybody else whose art I love. I still love their work, but I've found influences from elsewhere, outside of the same bubble we all stay in here on DA (and elsewhere online too). Now I feel free to draw what I want, whether it's popular or not makes not a jiff of difference to me. I'm cool doing my own thing, in my own bubble, with a smile and a spring in my step. I mean holy crap, I rarely, if ever, even draw fan art of anything anymore. I'd rather create new things, even if they make little to no sense to anyone else! Who knows, what I find cool may be cool to some other folks; in which case they're welcome to follow along in places like Instagram, where I feel free to post whatever and then just go on my way without having to devote actual working time.

Anyway, this is getting long again. 

Point is, I'm going to try and check DA at least every other week from now on. I won't ever be as active as I used to be I suspect, life is busy, work is pretty constant and honestly, I don't really want to spend that amount of time on any social media anymore! I want to be drawing something I like for my own things, or for clients to earn my living, or I want to be out in the woods or kayaking down a peaceful rural river. Yep, I'm getting old (thirty-bloody-four years old now. Where did it go?) and I love it!

My inbox was so full to bursting that I've had to basically delete all group content (sorry groups, I still loves ya really, ya beautiful schmuk, but somethings gotta give, ya know?). I'll work my way through the backlog of deviations from all of you fellow deviants I follow in good time, then hopefully by checking weekly or fortnightly, I can keep some kind of tabs on you all and post some recent art and whatnot.

So in summary, hi everyone, I missed you! Now bye everyone (but not for as long this time)! 

Big hugs, y'all stay batshit crazy now you hear?
Ian.xoxoxoxoxoxox
😂
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January 4
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