You guys, it’s been a while.
And now everything looks different. Which is totally cool. From time to time (about every two years) I’ll get the urgent wish to redesign my websites, and this is what it’s now. This time it’s been intense. I learned a lot about myself again over the last twelve months, and most parts now just fell into place, and so did the website. For almost since I’ve started studying art, I felt not right the way I was. This sometimes is still an issue, but it has also changed: acceptance is key!
In art school, I had some ugly encounters over the years. Just to give you an impression:
- When I showed my works to a professor at an art school I back then wanted to apply for, he said, “With this fantasy crap of yours you’ll never get in here.” It was the first time I’ve ever showed my works to a professional at a uni.
- I was drawing intensely for two years in a row to reach a level of skill that would be good enough to enter art school. I drew every day, and increased the quality of drawing immensely by the help of an artist who is still a fried of mine today. When I got in, and showed my drawings to my first-year instructor for the first time, he simply asked, “Gosh, have you ever learned to draw?”
- After passing the intermediate exam at art school, one of the examiners told me: “We’ve been discussing if you’d be going to pass the exam and your works extensively, you’ve made it just barely.” He just wanted me to know that.
All these moments taught me that I got something fundamentally wrong about art, because nobody in art school seemed to like or understand what I do. Over the next years, I try to understand what I’ve obviously been doing wrong, but I just didn’t get it. Because I didn’t understand the art school circus, I got no scholarships, no prizes. And after a while I was only working secretly without ever showing anyone what I do.
animation saved me
The moment I started to make animated bits, I came to believe that this is something cool but it couldn’t be art. It couldn’t be art since I chose it, and nothing that I chose to do was recognized as art so far. But then I discovered that I’d do it anyway, no matter what the circumstances are. Plus, things got less tough the moment I started working in animation. I also got a travel grant to study animation at an art school in Vienna. How cool is that?
I recently was asked if I could live from my art, and I gave a really smart answer:
I do not do it because I can make a living of this. – I do it even though I put more money in than I get out.
I’d do what I do even if my work may not support my living. I’d do what I do even if nobody would care. What I do is the best contribution I could ever make to society. And the moment I decided I’m okay with what I do, the rest of the world just said, “Okay!” I found galleries who wanted to show my work, I sold artworks, got a job at a uni (and take good care on my students there) and people paid me for talking about my work. Interesting, huh?
Why I tell you all this stuff? Because I have a new website. And art and animation and words are not longer separated: they’re all different aspects of what I do. – Finding and developing images that move. My old animation blog won’t be updated anymore, you’ll find everything here now.
I finally feel home. This is my place, and I’m glad you’re here.
Internet hugs and much love!
PS If you need support for what you do, and there’s nobody to make you a hot chocolate, just watch this Video of Neil Gaiman addressing the University of the Arts Class of 2012. It’s encouraging and rescued me several times last year.