Well, well, well. Look who’s come crawling back. Again.
It’s true. I’m disillusioned with social media.
I don’t want to make TikToks all day, I want to make art. And maybe write about it a little. And so, tentatively I’m back to blogging…? I don’t know anymore, this whole content-creation landscape makes me do this…
I won’t’ lie, it’s very comforting coming back here and seeing all the old posts sitting and waiting. When I started digging back into the blog for the first time recently it hit me just how much I miss having a platform I can control.
Sure, it’s not populated by millions of ethereal users who might interact but it does let me be my uncensored self, with no algorithm to please and no gatekeepers to hide my content (Fuck even just that word bothers me!).
The plan so far is to use the blog as the true-true, he-who-remains, single-source, absolute gospel for AOW “content”, ie all the stuff I want to make. So if it’s worth posting it’ll be posted here first.
Speaking of, I’m just about to break 4,000 followers on Instagram and I’m planning a nice little original art giveaway lined up to celebrate. Come join us.
Since the pandemic began it’s been challenging to find ways to be social, but one that’s been a healthy distraction and stuck around after the initial excitement wore off is streaming on Twitch.
Live streaming commission work
I initially started streaming so I could learn how to setup a proper stream and use programs like OBS for a friend who wanted to stream games, but they quit pretty quick into it and I just kept doing it.
I stream pretty consistently every week Tue-Thursday in the evening hours. Come hang out.
The Vinyl Thoughts Art Show 5 is here and Co-founder Cody Phillips was kind enough to invite me to participate in the show this year! I don’t make vinyl toys, yet, but I will have this exclusive new print available only at the show on September 25th. ‘Leporidae’ was created specifically for this event and will be limited to a run of 50 pieces, available only at Vinyl Thoughts 5. (more…)
I’ve made another move, this one in the really real world. The house I was renting got put on the market and I had to move on shorter notice than I was expecting, and so I ended up about 10 miles farther North, in a little town called McKinney. A town I just so happened to be born in. It’s on all kinds of “Safest City” & “Best Suburb” lists, and I’m happy to report that the restaurants on the revamped Downtown Square do not disappoint.
Dark Phoenix Watercolor
I’ve been back to work about two weeks now and finally have a moment to stop, catch my breath and update the site a bit. Speaking of, there are about a dozen new pieces in the Commission gallery with more coming soon. I also had time to play around with some watercolors during the packing process and did a few practice pieces including the Dark Phoenix you can see here.
Oh, and those commissions are now officially open!
If you visit the blog often you’ll notice that we’ve made a small switch over from the soulcore.net domain to the new and condensed ArtOfWarlick.com. A while ago my good buddy Luan pondered aloud why I had never done an “Art Of War” riff with my brand. I’ve been rolling it around in my head ever since and decided a few weeks ago that it was the direction I wanted to go. I’ve stuck with Soulcore.net out of habit and nostalgia for more than a decade (this site has been live in one form or another since 1998!) but I felt it was time to put away childish aliases and proudly and boldy start using my real name on the artwork I create.
Seven years ago I was an Art Director at Targetbase, a direct-marketing company here in Dallas, working under a woman named Kimberly Walsh as the first interactive hire in a what was still very much a print shop. As is usually the case with cube farms meetings were abundant, and one particular morning I was double-booked, and had to make a quick decision about which meeting to attend.
I chose poorly.
I was reprimanded by Miss Walsh, told to go home and not to attend my first ever annual Christmas Party. When I asked if I was being fired I got the snarky response of “Did I say you were fired? Go home, don’t’ come to the Party, and we’ll see you Monday.”
I came back that Monday to the news that everyone had gotten a $2,000 Christmas Bonus for having such a great year. When I inquired about my own bonus I was told in no uncertain terms that I didn’t deserve it, and would not be getting one. After years of long meetings, unfulfilling projects and frustrating corporate-politics it was the straw that broke the camel’s back. That was the day I decided I needed to work for myself.
Six months later I had stashed away 6 months worth of bills and rent into my savings account and wrote my first ever letter of resignation. Two weeks after that I was officially self-employed. I’ve never looked back.
I also never got to thank Kimberly for the unintended inspiration. If not for her I may have remained under that illusion they sell to new creatives at large companies. What I am thankful for is all the great people I met and the contacts I collected, many of which I still keep in touch with today.
So if you’re an artist/creative don’t be afraid to take action. Don’t let fear of the unknown paralyze you. There is no such thing as job security. And in the end it’s the relationships you create that matter most.