First and foremost is my Battle of the Bulge. In 2011, I decreased my amount of exercise compared to 2010. I said I was going to take 2011 off and just try to maintain. So it comes as no surprised that I gained back some of the weight. I was fluctuating between the same five to ten pounds. Then it went to ten to 15. Now I'm back up to around 325, maxing out at 327. So with the new year comes the first challenge which is the same one as before: to lose 30 lbs. in two months. I have new DVDs from The Biggest Loser. I will start exercising six days a week. I will get back into the mind frame of responsible eating habits. I will make a change.
Next month begins the new season of The Biggest Loser on NBC. The theme for this season is "No Excuses." Whatever your excuse was for not exercising, it will not cut it anymore. That was my philosophy when I started this in December of 2009. My only excuse was that I did NOT have an excuse. My main reason for gaining the weight was I was too lazy to do anything about it. But there comes a time when you have to say enough is enough. What I was doing to my body was not right. I had to make a change and I did. Now, it is that time again. I know it can be done because I've done it before. The first time the big hurdle for me was to get under 400 lbs. Now the big hurdle is getting under 300 lbs. I almost made it once before years ago. I got down to 303 lbs. then stopped. I gained it all back and then some. Last year I got down to 305 lbs. I was so close to grabbing that brass ring but never held it in my hand. This time I am determined more than ever to get it. I have to keep psyching myself up about it or it will never happen.
That's what I have planned for the physical part of 2012. Now for the creative part of 2012:
As far as having completely polished and DONE animated scenes in 2011, I only have a few. My demo reel has not changed that much since graduation two years ago. By year's end I will have a completely revamped demo reel. I have been applying to a few studios here and there and have yet to have any luck. I have been sending out the same scenes but just in different orders. Yes, I have added a couple of my scenes to it but nothing that I would say is completely polished, nothing to be really proud of. What I am really proud of are the scenes I have completed for Dana's short film. It has been so awesome to work with her on this. She has been very supportive of all the work I've done for her. I can't thank her enough.
But I need to spice up my reel. I need some fresh meat. I'm tired of looking at the same scenes over and over. I can't keep working on the same old stuff over and over. I need to invest my time into something new. So I plan to animate one new scene a month, whether it be a dialog scene or strictly body mechanics. I need something NEW!! But this time I will do it the right way. I already have several dialog clip to choose from. I even have video reference for a couple of them. What I need to do is sit down and plan it out, vidref to storyboards to first and second blocking pass to final polish. This is what I need to do in one month. Heck, that's what I did back at Animation Mentor. We had four to six weeks to do a scene from beginning to end. I just need to get back into that frame of mind. One way to help with this resolution is to enter the 11 Second Club competition. They always have a nice selection of audio clips. It's just a matter of finding one that peaks my interest and gets the creative juices flowing.
To help with the creativity, I plan to read at least one chapter of The Illusion of Life a month. That book is considered the bible of animation and I have yet to read it cover to cover. I've skimmed it and read a chapter or two, but I need to immerse myself in it and soak up as much knowledge as possible. I know there's so much I'm missing out on. And it's not just that book. I want to learn as much as possible this year from everything I can find. There are so many tutorials and videos online now that it's so easy to find what you're looking for. So it's not only reading The Illusion of Life, but studying my craft more intensely.
And one more thing to add on to this "learning" resolution. I need to get into my sketchbook more often. I have recently picked it up for a side project I'm working on for a friend (details later) and I am loving it. It's a bit frustrating as always to not create on the paper the image I see in my mind. Somewhere along the path from my brain, down through my arm and out my hand it loses a bit in the translation. I may not create some elaborate sketchbook like the ones I've seen by different animation professionals, but at least I'm creating something.
Well, that's about it. There are a few other things I have in mind but I'm going to keep those close to the chest but here's an idea.. As for now, it looks like 2012 is going to be very busy and very productive. It's going to take a lot of hard work, determination and dedication.