draw a thing every day and also post that thing on drawed goods march

Study Advice I've gathered from my GCSEs

Subjects:

Mathematics; English Language; English Literature; Religious Studies; Geography; Fine Art; Graphic Design; Biology; Chemistry; Physics

Mathematics:

  • Learn how to do a Stem and Leaf Diagram. Remember the Key. There is always one of these and it’s usually easy. 
  • Don’t forget about the equations at the front of the exam sheet. You usually need them at least once, so keep an eye out for Prisms, Spheres and other aspects of the formula given.
  • Practice is really the only way to learn Mathematics. Keep practicing ideas, if you have a textbook, answer all it’s question. 
  • If you don’t have a textbook, look up equations online.
  • Learn the official names for Angles, Circle and Triangle theorems. This means phrases like corresponding angles or explaining that a tangent is at 90 degrees to radii. 
  • Know your way around your calculator. Self-Explanatory, you need to know how to type Pi or sin. 

English Language and Literature:

For Poetry:

  • Annotate all over the page you get for the poem. The more notes you have the better as there will definitely be loads of points that are too weird to actually use in an exam.
  • Don’t lose the anthology or poetry book! I did this and had to go a month without one. It means you lose your notes and have to rewrite them all out again.
  • Learn the links between your poems. The links are very important as they constitute a lot of your exam. 
  • Listen to class discussion closely or talk to friends. Sharing ideas helps in poetry, as everyone notices something different. 

For Speaking and Listening:

  • Find something you want to talk about. If you are aiming for a C or B grade, talk about something you are comfortable with. It will make you less nervous speaking it on the day
  • Bring water. Water is useful for all exams but especially this one and language speaking. I only talked for about four minutes but my throat got really dry.
  • Don’t worry if you stutter, pick it back up. I had to start again twice because I blanked and my teacher said I still got an A or possibly A*. Literally everyone makes a mistake.
  • Practice. Practicing with your friends is great preparation as they will notice little things you do wrong and you’ll be less nervous.

For Literature Essays:

  • Read the book fully. In Year 10 I didn’t actually read the end of Of Mice and Men and I didn’t know Lennie got shot. Read it in small chunks, even though you cover it in class, you might notice more when you are alone. 
  • If you are comparing two books in your assessment, find strong links between them. 
  • If you have a controlled assessment and you know the subject, write out an essay or at least a detailed plan. I did this and memorised the first section. 
  • In your final exam, plan. I keep saying plan, but planning is the best way to remove mistakes and create a structure. 

For writing coursework:

  • Hand it in early, so you can improvements from your teachers. English teachers are some of the busiest teachers and there is always a line of about six Sixth form students outside their classrooms. Finish it as soon as possible so you can have time to improve your work.

Religious Studies:

I did Christian Ethics and St. Marks Gospek

  • Learn the basic concepts of the religion. For Christianity, Loving others, forgiveness and saying something is God’s will are basic ideas. 
  • Learn the key terms. For 1 mark and 3 mark questions there is usually a mark for each term in them. By terms it can be things like Somatic Cell Therapy, Detterence or Reconciliation.
  • Learn the basic outline of all the stories you study. At the end there is usually a 6 or 8 mark question which asks for an outline. e.g.: ‘Summarise the events of Holy Week’.
  • Quotes. Quote every time you make a major point. Quote or give a concept. Most questions need a link to Christianity in order to be worth anything
  • You will have to say things you disagree with. The evaluative questions require reasons for and against. so you might be for Nuclear Proliferation but go against it as you can think of more reasons against Nuclear Weapons. 
  • All your reasons need to be Christian. Your conclusion also needs to have Christian evidence in order to gain 6 marks in Evaluation questions

Geography:

  • For Geography you will have the answer Long answer questions, so it is good to learn how to structure, punctuate and fluently write an answer. The questions where this is needed are highlighted.
  • Keep your maps and sheets! Out of all my subjects, Geography is like the second biggest offender for workbooks full of paper. This includes maps of where cities are but also important images like the water cycle or formation of a spit. It’s way easier to keep and annotate these rather than re-draw all of them.
  • Do the coursework. I have a friend who didn’t get to hand in her coursework, I was nearly the same. I only managed to get in on my last day and it really freaked me out. 
    Try to get it in early so you can amend it, even if you are predicted lower grades you could get an A or A* for coursework. It makes the exam feel less daunting.
  • Use past papers for questions. We only had the exemplar as it was a new course and you could tell the difference. If you don’t get them in class, find some online and do the practice questions. 
  • Plan your long answers. There can be 10 mark questions, there will be a mark for grammar and structure. Write little notes in the corner so you get enough points and write your best. Your paper does not need to look pretty.

Fine Art:

  • Start Early. Art is great because you have one less exam in exam season. The problem is that you have to pay a lot of attention to it earlier. Finish as many pages as you can in Year 10, you don’t want to have to return to them in Year 11 when you have exams.
  • Prioritise it in January- March. You can revise for your exams later but the Art finishes earlier and cannot be redone after March/April.
  • Cover lots of media. Even if you’re amazing at collage or painting, do several types of media. You get more marks for some good and loads of terrible than loads of fantastic art in one form.
  • Make annotations that matter. Say why you like the thing even if you don’t, always talk about inspirations and what you’ve learnt from your piece.
  • Bring White Paint and your own paintbrushes. You don’t need them every lesson but we always ran out of white paint and all the little paint brushes had been ruined by younger years, so be prepared if you don’t have good collections. 
  • Have a glue stick. PVA is gross and ruins your sketchbook.

Graphic Design:

  • Go through the textbook in Year 10. The stuff in Graphics seems to be really vague, i.e.:Aesthetics, or really specific, i.e.: Paper properties, printing techniques. Learn the specifics as for most of Year 11 you’ll be doing the coursework.
  • For your coursework, choose something you know you can make. Choose something suitable for your skills, I choose to make a book as it was more creative orientated but people more orientated to computer designs and specifics created boxes.
  • If you are doing Art, another Technology or anything with loads of coursework, try to get ahead while you can. Work Earlier and don’t mess around during the planning stage. Not only does it make practical quicker, it takes less time editing it later. 
  • You may have to take days off in order to finish you coursework folder. My Art Exam and Graphics deadline were a week apart. I had to take two long weekends off to complete it.
  • If you have lunchtimes or after school sessions, go to them. There’s a lot of things you don’t have at home like a laser cutter, 2D design or saws.

Science Subjects:

I took the AQA course, taking Biology, Physics and Chemistry as a separate course.

General Science:

  • Buy the textbook for your course, especially if you are doing Triple/ Individual Sciences. Some of the information you need is missed because you are ill, away or your teacher doesn’t go into depth.
  • The textbooks aren’t very in depth though. A lot of textbooks are made for C grade aims. If you want an A* you need to listen to your teacher.
  • Try to learn from as many sources as possible. As i said, textbooks and teachers miss things. There is online videos and BBC Bitesize is a good site. 
  • Flashcards. Flashcards are good for all subjects but are the best for Science. 
  • Bring a calculator to your classes and exams. Not just Physics, all three need some maths.

Chemistry:

  • Use Youtube videos. Picturing the reactions is annoying and the videos and animations help. Just search Gcse Chemistry *insert subject here*
  • Learn how to balance equations. People either love them or hate them and I hate it. Make a little table or diagrams below the question if you can’t.
  • Learn the Maths part of Chemistry. Meaning Percentage Yields, Energy Calculations, Concentration of a solution. If you get this down that’s at least 3 marks if not 6 on the higher papers, 
  • Powerpoint. I used Powerpoint like Flashcards, making a slide with information and then questions. This was good as you don’t have to draw all the diagrams and can just copy them from the internet. 

Biology

  • Use Flowcharts. In Biology there’s more processes you need to learn, i.e.: the movement of blood, a reflex reaction. 
  • Talking of Reflex Reactions, memorise that. It seems to have appeared in every Exam I have taken. 
  • You will still need to do Math in Biology but it will usually be easier. 
  • If you get a question with a picture, use the picture to your advantage. This also happens with graphs, where you should quote the data. 

Physics

  • Understanding. A lot of harder questions require you to understand the concepts. Don’t just memorise facts, try to understand how things work. 
  • Be precise. Especially with Lens diagrams and Refraction. The mark scheme requires your diagrams and numerical answers to be almost perfect. 
  •  For the last minute revision its best to look at the calculations you’ll get on the formula sheet in the exam. These lead to the key concepts you need and mean you can recognise which to use in the exam.
  • Learn the units. Kind of enough said really. 

Ask an Artist #3

  • Name: Deena Beck
  • Website: deenabeck.tumblr.com      
  • Current: Storyboard Artist at Cartoon Network on Ben 10
  • Past Work: Animator at Titmouse on Turbo FAST, Superjail!, and China, IL.

Where are you from, and where do you work now?

I grew up just 20 minutes north of Richmond, VA then moved out on my own immediately after graduating high school to go try to go to school in NYC at School of Visual Arts. I was in NYC for about 7-8 years before moving out to California this past March.  

Describe your current job. What are your daily responsibilities?

I’m currently working on the new Ben 10 series Cartoon Network is doing! I’m liking it a lot. Every week is different depending on what stage of the process we are in. We do boards in teams of two. My board partner is Dashawn Mahone (GO CHECK OUT HIS WORK! Dashawn’s Tumblr).

For every new episode the schedule goes like this:

-       Kick off meeting : Go over the script with show runner/directors

-       1 weeks to do thumbnails

-       2 weeks to do roughs

-       2 week to do clean ups

And you kind kinda do that however you want to as long as you hit your deadlines but Dashawn and I have seemed to nail down a system that works for us.

THUMBS: We do thumbs on extra wide post it pads and stick them to the wall and we go through the entire script from start to finish together. Some people split up the workload and then do their parts separately. But I find if you go through together it’s way faster, you end up with less things you need to change, it’s funnier and overall more cohesive.

Then you pitch your thumbs to the directors and they give you back notes and/or changes. Before we start doing our roughs, we will sit down again together and thumb out the notes and fixes. Once that is done it’s time for…

ROUGHS: This is kind of the hardest part. Our motto while doing thumbs is “Like this but better.” So this is the stage where you have to fix all the sloppiness or change up the compositions to look better. We will split up the episode at this point and work separately in Story Board Pro.

Then pitch your roughs! Again you’ll get notes to fix things or change things mostly (hopefully) just for clarity reasons. And once again, we will sit down together and help thumb out each others’ notes and changes before moving on to Clean UP.

CLEAN UP: This stage is your time to polish and clean up any loose ends. The artwork itself doesn’t have to be on exactly on model or perfectly clean or anything like that, it just needs to be clear and everything in the right places.

At the end of those five weeks then you pitch the episode to everyone! All the peoples. The other board teams, the other artists, the show runners, execs, etc. It’s a little intimidating but it’s really fun to get to see how people react and laugh at jokes.

How long have you been drawing and what inspired you to become an artist?

I’ve  been drawing for a long time! I loved coloring books and doodling when I was a toddler and kind of always kept up with it in some way or another. Then when I was 10-14 years old I was very very depressed and basically threw all my energy into drawing. I would draw all day every day. I remember my teachers telling me to pay attention but the only way I could pay attention in class and learn was if I was doodling at the same time.

I remember being in the car driving home I think from looking at Halloween costumes when I was very young. Either the first couple years of elementary school or possibly before that. One of my parents asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up and I thought about it hard and said I wanted to make cartoons. I don’t think at that time I could articulate why I wanted that but I just knew that’s what my gut was telling me.

Did you go to college or are you self taught? A mixture of both?

I was one of those kids who started looking into colleges when I was like 12. So I was researching a lot about SCAD, CALArts, RISD, Sheridan, etc. All these big name schools and then I made a friend who went to School of Visual Arts while I was still in high school. I never heard of that before but I discovered they supposedly had a good animation program so I decided to do their pre-college program the summer before 12th grade. I wanted to figure out if animation was just something I liked or something I could actually see myself happy to be doing for the rest of my life. I had a really great experience that summer and SVA ended up being the only school I applied to!

If you did go to college, what are some of the most important things that you learned?

I learned a lot from Don Poynter who was one of my teachers. He taught perspective, layout and an advanced class that was basically film theory and composition. He was also my thesis advisor. I had a lot of other great teachers but I think Don was the only one who really challenged me to be better than I am and I’ve always appreciated that.

College itself however gave me a lot of opportunities to learn about life. I met a lot of people and no matter where you end up going to school or whatever you do, it’s a time in your life where you end up figuring out what is important to you and who you want to be. I guess that never stops being true but college tends to be a good catalyst for young people to question themselves and ask themselves what will make them happy. (I hope this makes sense and isn’t too rambly! Let me know if you want me to elaborate?)

What are your go-to tools to create your art?

I usually doodle a lot in whatever program I’m using at that moment. So most of my drawings are done in flash or Storyboard Pro. Occasionally I’ll open up Photoshop or Sai Painter. I really love painting with acrylic and want to start painting again! But recently I’ve been making little dudes with sculpey and that’s been really awesome.

Any favorite past times?

I am pretty anti-social! Friendly but anti-social I guess? So it’s hard to get me to go out and do parties and what not. Mostly my partner, Jon, and I go out and go thrift store shopping, to flea markets, marathon TV shows together and play video games. I really like Star Trek and other Sci Fi shows. We just recently finished up X-Files right before they announced they are making a new season. WHAAATTT.

How long have you been working, and have there been any challenges during your career?

I have been working in Animation since 2010-ish? I worked for John Dilworth while I was still in school. Then I worked for the Rauch Bros just as I was graduating. I was at Titmouse in NY for a few years before taking a freelance gig to animate for a webseries for Nickelodeon. While I was freelancing I decided to move across country and thankfully landed a job at Cartoon Network where I am now!

I think my biggest challenge has been the normal challenges. I know what job I want but I need to gain more experience and skill before I can get there. I’ve always known that storyboarding is what I want to do and what I enjoy most but you gotta start where you can! So I was doing a lot of production stuff at the beginning, then I got the opportunity to do Ink and Color. Then I got the opportunity to do animation. I didn’t want to do animation anymore and didn’t seem like there were opportunities for me to do storyboarding where I was so I decided to go seek those opportunities out. And now I’m doing storyboarding and I’m loving it! I just gotta keep getting better and do good so I can keep getting storyboard jobs in the future. Crossing my fingers.

Was it difficult entering the animation industry, and what do you think are some of or the most important factors that determines success?

I want to preface this by saying I have worked very very very very hard to do good work and that’s ultimately the basis of my success. However! I’m also not the best at self promoting and getting myself out there. So my success so far has been because of people who know me seeing my work and recommending me and that’s how I got my foot into the door. The hardest part is getting in but once you’re in and if you do a good job it’s infinitely easier. In the very least you feel a little bit more confident about finding work. But getting into the animation industry (or any industry really?) is very stressful and scary. So the best thing you can do for yourself is to 1. Do good work and 2. Make friends! 3. Be somewhat professional helps also. (I feel like this advice is applicable to most career paths)

What has been your favorite production to work on thus far?

I can’t tell you! But no seriously. So far Ben 10 has been awesome. My favorite production before this is the web series for Nick I got to work on. That was wonderfuuuull. It was off site freelance so I could work at home in my PJs and fart it up all day. The show runner was awesome to work for and a great dude. (ALANNNN)

Have you ever been the only woman in the room or production; if so, what was that like for you?

Not yet! Which is awesome! I work with so many wonderfully talented ladies and I see more and more young lady animators looking to enter the field. Thankfully that hasn’t been my experience yet.

Who are some of your favorite female animated characters? What is it about them that you particularly enjoy?

I am really really digging basically all of the Gems on Steven Universe. I love seeing characters that just happen to be female but it doesn’t define them. Amethyst is Amethyst who happens to be a chick. It’s not Girl Gem #2 who’s name is Amethyst.

Any productions that you would like to work on, or would you like one day have your own show?

I would love to have my own show! I’ve been sitting on a personal project that I think I’m ready to pitch. We will see what happens!

Any personal projects that you’re working on now?

My partner and I are working on a short film! He created, wrote and did most of it. I’m doing the animation and layouts. Look out for it by the end of the year I hope!

And finally, any words of wisdom to students aspiring to enter your line of work?

Never stop asking yourself questions! Always ask yourself honestly “What will make me happy?” Ask yourself hard questions and be brutally honest with yourself. This field is hard and the first thing you need to figure out is if you actually want to do animation or if you just love animation. Are you just a fan or not? I think I see a lot of people mistake their love for animation as a desire to do animation and only after a lot of time and a lot of money wasted they finally realize it’s not for them.


Thank you Deena! As always, if interested, check out our other interviews!

(Pictured: Gerard Way wearing an Iggy Pop shirt and holding a Stooges album)

MY CHEMICAL ROMANCE: MUSICAL THIEVES


My Chemical Romance is a very meta band. They spend a lot of their discography talking about themselves, carving out their place within their music, and - as Kelly noted so eloquently - breaking the fourth wall to directly address the listener. MCR was always deeply invested in telling a story about themselves. To paraphrase what Kayla wrote earlier, this obsession with narratives was a way of controlling their own destiny, of bringing some kind of order to the chaos amidst which the band began. But it also serves as a method of situating MCR within a musical context of their own construction. The band was always strikingly clear about who their musical influences were, often outright naming those influences or lifting musical ideas from them.

This constant referentiality was a shrewd way of ensuring everybody listening knew exactly who MCR was supposed to sound like; the band did the work of drawing a line from their idols to themselves instead of waiting for critics to do it for them. On “Kill All Your Friends,” a relatively obscure B-side from The Black Parade, MCR kicks things off with a mounting wave of guitar feedback and Gerard hissing menacingly before launching right into a blatant iteration of one of the most widely ripped-off guitar riffs of all time. Anyone who’s ever heard “Where Is My Mind?” by the Pixies will instantly recognize (and roll their eyes at) it. It’s so clearly a cliche, obvious to the point of being cheap, yet somehow it works. It keeps you listening, and that’s where the genius of MCR begins to make itself clear.

(Video: Music + lyrics to “Kill All Your Friends”)

MCR isn’t just pointing to the Pixies - they’re waggling gleeful spirit-fingers in their direction. It’s a kind of musical shorthand, a quick and dirty way of saying, “This is who we want to be compared to.” It’s stealing, done in such an unsophisticated way that it becomes somehow more meaningful. There’s no attempt to bury or disengage MCR’s connections to a rock lineage; instead, they put those connections right out there on center stage and shine a spotlight on them, all but guaranteeing they’ll be mentioned in the same breath. MCR also combines contradictory influences in disarming fashion, letting the cultural locations of their forerunners inform both the narrative that the band weaves about itself and the message that they are trying to convey to audiences.

The musical references laden in “Kill All Your Friends” don’t stop at the intro: on the prechorus, Gerard chants “let it be, let it be, let it be,” which could be an invocation of the Beatles or the Replacements or both. The latter option seems to be the most likely, since The Black Parade is an album that essentially combines the ambitious, orchestral sweep - not to mention the marching band aesthetic - of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band with the disillusioned grit of the Replacements’ oeuvre. That’s not to say these are the only artists MCR bites on The Black Parade - quite the opposite. The album owes a painfully obvious creative debt to Queen, but a knowledgeable listener can pick up all sorts of scattered baubles. “Mama” sounds like Danzig at their demonic best somehow wandered into a cabaret featuring the Dresden Dolls, with Liza Minelli as the ghoulish emcee. The result is a bizarre stew of hypermasculine heavy metal cut with goth-girl creepiness, which perfectly complements the self-flagellating, gender-confused lyrics.

(Video: “Mama”)

The shoutouts don’t stop after The Black Parade. Danger Days is crammed full of them: the band swipes Iggy Pop’s snarling self-description as a “streetwalking cheetah” and pledges to “kick out the jams,” repurposes the Cure’s ringing guitar sound, pays respect to the glittery legacies of David Bowie and Marc Bolan. We’ll be talking more in depth about Danger Days later on in the week, but suffice it to say that it’s no coincidence that these were the influences on the album with which MCR tried to scale things back a bit, drawing from glam, new wave, and garage rock to match their revamped post-apocalyptic aesthetic. Of course, MCR was never exactly a band that could quite pull off the stripped-down sound, and Danger Days ended up being just as bombastic as its predecessors, but the melange of influences this time around served a different purpose: hinting at the tense, aggressive state of mind that the band was in at the time while also acting as a cultural reference point for Gerard’s increasingly androgynous and often lewd stage presence.

(Video: My Chemical Romance performing “Destroya” live in Paris)

My goal with this post was not to list out every single reference MCR has ever tossed into their work. All bands have influences, and diligent listening will reward any fan with a complex web of musical threads. What sets MCR apart is the intentionality with which they spun their particular web and used it to tell their story. Audible influences hold a kind of alchemical power for MCR - they conjure their heroes up as if to draw upon their essences, to evoke reactions in listeners that blend the thrill of recognition with the intrigue of the unknown. In a way, MCR was one long experiment, extracting the essential qualities of their chosen components and performing a mystic science to create a heady, slightly poisonous musical experience. In another way, MCR was a battering ram, breaking down barriers between so many strictly delineated categories - genre, gender, good versus evil - with a thrilling and terrifying recklessness. All we can do is hold fast and keep listening.

- Olivia

Why Darth Maul has been my favourite character for so long, and probably always will be.

((This is just a really long post about me geeking out on Maul, it’s not that deep or anything I guess. I’m on mobile so I can’t put it under a cut, sorry!))

It sounds silly, I know. He originally had a very brief appearance with next to no lines in the original movie, and is killed off almost instantly, but as a kid I was instantly drawn to the character.

I think I was about 10 or 11 when I first watched Phantom Menace. It was a couple of months after I’d seen the original trilogy, and I don’t think my brother was ever planning on showing me the movies- he’s a bit older than me and a complete original trilogy purist, the prequels can’t even be mentioned in his presence, blah blah blah.
Anyway, my friend kept going on about three other movies, which he had the DVDs for, and offered to lend them to me over the week long holiday I was going on. I had one of those cool portable car film players, and with my set of new Star Wars films to watch, I was more than excited to say the least.

And I watched the movie on the 3 hour journey, and I’m just gonna flat out say it: It was the best film I’d ever seen. I was 10, I wasn’t a fucking film critic, and I didn’t care about any of these things that apparently make the movie so awful. The Queen was incredible, Obi Wan was (still is) WAY better than the original Ben Kenobi, I loved to hate Jar Jar Binks, and the lightsaber battles were better than ever.

And then there was this one character who grabbed my intention immediately. As soon as he popped up on that hologram, he was my favourite thing ever. As soon as I saw he was red and black (little emo me’s favourite colour scheme) he some how became even better. He didn’t need to talk like Vader, he was so much cooler than Palpatine, and then this guy started to fight.

Oooooh boy, could he fight. The Tattooine scrap was pretty cool, but when this “Darth Maul” guy lit up the double bladed lightsaber, I squealed. It was AMAZING. I’d been doing karate for maybe two, three years at this point, and it was something I loved doing, but this guy brought it to a whole new level. He looked so graceful and powerful and deadly at the same time, and I loved it. I couldn’t believe it when he died after such a short time, I think I genuinely cried. But I was pumped for the next movie, and so I looked forward to that instead (still grieving ngl)…

Except for one thing. My friend had lost two of the disks. I had the disk for the Phantom Menace, and it’s bonus disk, but I only had the bonus disks for the other two movies, not the actual films themselves. I Was Pissed™.

So instead I watched literally every bonus feature I could get on that first disk. I watched the info on the makeup, the design, the stunt acting? Anything thing I could possibly find, I watched. Multiple times. I watched the film’s a ton more times too. When I was out walking on the freezing English beach with my parents that holiday, I would grab for any long branch I could find and start using it as a double lightsaber (which is bloody difficult in welly boots). Little old me, obsessed with drawing, also started drawing out any picture I could think of just by using his face on the disk for a tattoo reference. Because his makeup was just the coolest looking thing I’d ever seen. I “borrowed” my mum’s eyeliner to draw them on my face too.

My first attempt at cosplay was Darth Maul. All my school art projects were Darth Maul (I actually still do that now). I would talk about him so much that my friends started referring to him as my boyfriend for god’s sake. I’ve read every book and comic I could get my hands on, and I’m also not gonna lie, a few years later the first fanfic I read was Darth Maul fic, and let me tell you it was a bloody good fic. Still love it. Another thing was that I was 126.84% sure that he wasn’t dead. I had countless ideas all mapped out, but none of them ever came to light, at least not in the main canon.

And then Clone Wars happened. I was never a huge fan of TCW. I liked it, but honestly I didn’t care all too much, and after a few seasons I lost track. I picked up again after my friend made me marathon the show with her (thank you), and I was introduced to Savage Opress. He was instantly a contender for my top ten Star Wars faves. He’s now a solid 2nd place, just behind his brother. He was awesome, and I instantly loved him, but I won’t go into that too much, because you’ve probably all given up on this mindless ramble by now!

Anyway, 2012 comes along, and I end up falling out of my fucking chair with excitement. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. After all my hoping and wishing and praying, Darth Maul would be back. Suddenly, this show was the best thing. I caught up on all storylines relevant to his return, until the day finally came around. I sat impatiently in front of the TV waiting for the episode to air. And I was shocked.
I don’t know what I should’ve expected, but seeing my (slightly concerning idea of a) role model being reduced to what he was genuinely broke my heart. I’m gonna try to keep things brief from here on out because I’ve realised how much I’ve written…
But yeah seeing his return to the force and his relationship with his brother and this whole new, intelligent, calm side to him improved his character to a point I didn’t feel was possible. Especially when it came to the death of Savage, and Talzin. Not out of character at all in my opinion, just a side of him we hadn’t seen before.

Darth Maul, his character and all the work that has gone into him has inspired me to no end. What I refer to as my “realistic” dream, Special Effects Makeup Artist, what I’m actually studying for, was inspired by him, as his makeup and horns and Ian McCaig’s designs and the way it exaggerates his face in the right ways to make him angry really brought me a whole new appreciation for that world of behind the scenes.
My ultimate, but slightly unrealistic dream, would be to do something in the worlds of either stunt acting or wrestling, and I honestly believe my original source of inspiration comes from the way that Maul could fight and move. In fact, it’s a very direct link when it comes to the stunt actor dream. I use to go to karate every week hoping there would be some secret talent scout looking for someone to play a padawan or something. In fact, I still do, so shush.

I could honestly say my appreciation for this character has changed my life, and gotten me through some really tough times, as silly as it sounds.

Besides, meeting my true hero (his actor, Ray Park) last year in March is still the best experience of my whole life. He was such a great guy, such a contrast to his character, and was a literal angel when I asked for a second photo after my phone took a blurry first picture. But again, I’ve rambled enough, and I know nobody is reading this. But whatever, it was fun to get my thoughts out.

TL;DR
Darth Maul is fucking amazing.

Sugaru Miaki & loundraw: "Azure and Claude" Creator Discussion

A two-part interview with Sugaru Miaki and the artist loundraw regarding the upcoming Azure and Claude manga. (Also, the start of the first part mentions another announcement from two days prior: a Three Days of Happiness manga, drawn by Shoichi Taguchi, published online in Shounen Jump+.)

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camppraetor-deactivated20150702  asked:

what are your recomendations for keeping a journal? how do you keep writing and fill it up and stay with everything?

yay ok i’ve been wanting to make a post like this for a while now so thanks for asking!!

so this is basically just going to be me ranting for a few paragraphs about my whole journaling process. stick around kids this is gonna be a lot of fun.

i started journaling in march of last year. i was really bored in class (we had about three hours in one classroom while other kids were taking an exam) so i took out a blank composition book i had and started doing a free write about the concert i was going to in a month.

by december 31, that notebook was completely full and i was able to check something off my bucket list (fill up a notebook).

alright so to start journaling, first you need to obviously get a notebook. i use composition books, just because that’s the kind i started with, but you can basically write in whatever you like.

this step is completely optional, but i like to paste pictures of dumb shit i’m into on the cover. for example:

this is the one i filled up last year.

and this is the one my friend gave me for christmas; it currently has about twenty pages left.

so yeah, just go to google images or something and print out pictures of stupid shit that you like, then glue or tape (tape works better i think) onto the cover!!

now onto what you can write about! my journaling style usually involves being bored af at school, pulling out a pen, and just scribbling down literally whatever’s on my mind. sometimes it ends up being a paragraph, sometimes it ends up being three or four pages. if you’re like me and fucking love your handwriting, this is a truly incredible experience.

i’m really really really bad at this, but i do recommend journaling while on vacation. i’m always terrible at remembering to do so, so i just end up writing about it from memory after i get back from the trip, but you should probably try to take out your notebook during any free time you have in a hotel or whatever, and just scribbling down whatever’s happened so far that day. another thing i really recommend doing is journaling while on an airplane. in my humble opinion, airports and airplanes are the best places in the universe to write, but i’m probably biased since airports are a huge part of my aesthetic. moving on.

anyway, my main journaling style is just stream-of-conciousness rants about nothing. some topics i’ve covered over the past year or two include

  • dumb movies we watched in health class
  • whether or not i should start writing x novel
  • my favorite band
  • nice things my friends did for me on my birthday
  • my jealousy towards people who got to meet my favorite author
  • rad friends i made on tumblr
  • how much i love starbucks
  • how much i love airports
  • how much i love parks and recreation
  • how much i hate standardized tests
  • the fact that i have nothing to write about

you get the idea. in my opinion, the best way to fill up journals is to just write without thinking about it. plus, idk why, but i love reading back over past journal entries, even the most pointless ones.

you can also draw in journals, if you’re more of an artist. i’m terrible at drawing, but i enjoy doing letter art, so the other day i filled up an entire page with this.

shoutout to the blue pen that made it through this whole thing without running out of ink. #realmvp

on days that i have literally nothing to write about, i’ll do some shit like this.

this is just a really good way to pass the time.

alrighty, so now onto one of my personal favorite things: pens. while i often journal in pencil, pens will always hold a special place in my heart and they will forever be one of the most beautiful things in the world.

i keep all of my pens in this cute little zipper pouch my mom got me in seventh grade. 

so i have three types of pens in there: pilot g2, papermate flair, and (all hail) pentel energel.

i switched out the ink cartridges in the pilot ones, so now the pen and writing are different colors. :^) they’re pretty good; their ink doesn’t flow as smoothly as our lord and savior pentel energel, but i still love them.

papermate flairs could probably be categorized as markers. they have a felt tip and make thicker lines than a ballpoint pen.

finally, we have the sparkling treasure of the universe: pentel energel. these beauties are made from the tears of jesus mixed with the blood of an angel. 

these pens write smooth as hELL. we’re talking your-legs-after-shaving-with-sugar-scrub smooth. it’s fucking magnificent. i get so fucking excited over these pens. they are the best pens in the universe. fight me on this. i will win.

i get very very emotional over pentel energels.

ok, so now onto some tumblr blogs!! i’m following a ton of journaling blogs on here, and for some reason seeing pictures of pretty pens and notebooks and handwriting makes me more motivated to journal. here’s a few journal blogs that i like.

anyway, i hope this helps!! i guess the biggest piece of advice i’ll give is to try to write in your journal every day and don’t care too much about what it looks like. i saw something on tumblr the other day that said that your journal will never look the way you want it to. which is probably true. just try to journal whenever you get the chance to and have fun with it!!