2019 retrospective

I continue to find peace and comfort with being myself (short hair is STILL AWESOME!). Last year I noted that I wanted to be kinder. I'm... still trying! Trying to take the empathy-first approach in all interactions, and extending that to anyone I meet. Actively checking my own biases. From a sustainability/environmental POV, I'm also trying to use less single-use plastics, choosing to eat less meat products, etc. I've finally used up all the "plastic bags" under my kitchen sink because I've been using reusable ones for a few years now.

I've consolidated my online presence! Aside from my own website, I'm only going to be active on mastodon. I'll cross-post relevant things to birdsite/twitter. For downloads, I'll be on itch.io! I've been unhappy with the state of online data privacy, and am making efforts to get off services that track, read, and sell/leak your data for marketing/profiling purposes. More information about that stuff on privacytools.io and/or /r/privacy, if you want to start to make the switch.

NYT recently put out an article on longitudinal location data and how it can become personally identifiable as soon as you pair it with one other data source. Deep fakes can be cheap and powerful. More specific data policy and regulations don't exist and/or aren't enforced and/or are behind. Add on to that, the average person would not have read the GDRP or CCPA to know what rights they have, nor has the average person untangled the legal language in a typical Terms of Service. There is a separate discussion about how privacy is becoming a privilege that people have to pay into (or have high literacy levels to navigate), rather than the baseline, which will ultimately put a lot of poorer and/or at risk folks, even more at risk. All of this makes me sad/mad! It's all very complex, I'll stop here!!!!!!

On a brighter note, I started playing the Yakuza video game series after seeing a video clip of a chicken at a bowling alley. Little did I know that this chicken would be a gateway into a fun and exciting world of pure-heartedness paired with extremely exaggerated violence. The series and its characters are immoral/righteous, aggressive/kind, and ridiculous/serious, but somehow it all balances out and makes for an entertaining game to play (and watch). It has been a while since I've felt invested in a series. The CG cut scenes and in-game play have pleasant reactive depth of field adjustments. After playing Y0, Kiwami 1, and Kiwami 2, I can confidently say that Majima (surprising?) is my favourite! Specifically seeing the charater change from Y0 to K1 was chefs kiss. Kiryu is a big himbo.

The video comments on Yakuza videos aren't dumpster fires like most other videos. Unfortunately I still do not have the chicken after an hour of trying to get the chicken. NUGGET (cries)!

My favourite animal of the year is the opossum. I'm extremely enamoured by them, and want to look at them all the time. They're simultaneously cute and feral, depending on the image you see. Their little hands are so strange and delightful.

Runner-up animal would be the raccoon dog, especially this one that is enjoying a pile of autumn leaves.

2019 memories/accomplishments:

  • Right around this time last year, I put out the first chapter of Here We Are. We're 100+ pages in~waooo how did this happen~? Preparing the book design now, even though I'm not done drawing the inside pages!
  • Someone asked me to be on their WILL to take care of their kid (in the unfortunate event that multiple others aren't available). Wow, is this a true sign of adulthood and responsibility?
  • I still have a job! I learned a lot of new things from my job...expanded my generalist capabilities!
  • I'm saving money! High interest saving account? RRSP? TFSA? Auto-deposits? I GOT EM!
  • I illustrated an author's parent/baby book, and it will be officially printed/self-published in 2020! It's going to be hardcover and smyth-sewn! I learned a bunch about doing file prep for these kinds of covers, as well as the magics of content-awareness fill. Please look forward to it! (Also it's my first foray into being 'an illustrator', which I will continue to have imposter syndrome about)
  • I took care of a lot of charming and beautiful tamagotchi ON babies
  • Seeing a big pile of Sallys at the LINE store
  • Rebuilt my PC (so I could play Yakuza hahaha) and it somehow still works...?!
  • Have 2-levels of daily file backup (one of my HDs broke this year, I almost lost everything...!)

In 2020 I'd like to:

  • Continue to be kind
  • Continue to purge accounts/things that are bad for data privacy
  • Survive working remotely in the dead of winter, on an island
  • Experiment and/or reconnect with the world, relevant industries, and my creative craft (I want to dig into more clip studio paint features and understand how to harness them, and read/write more about character development/voice)
  • I should probably exercise
  • Use my hard earned money to support and appreciate more artists (music, visual, fashion, etc.) and donate to more worthy causes
  • Add accessibility information on images I post on SM (social media)
  • Play more Yakuza, get the chicken

Thanks everyone, and happy new year~

Today's music post: Yesterday Princess (Stanley Clarke X Curren$y) by Yussef Dayes ft. Rocco Palladino & Charlie Stacey. Another mega chill production by some of my favourite musicians!

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