Sitting Around…..Staring

21 Jan

It’s really funny when someone brings up the notion of “working” as a cartoonist.  They tend to believe the hardest part is laboring over drawing, coloring and the creation of the art in general.  In reality though, that’s all cake!  The hardest part is sitting around.  Staring.  For hours, and hours, and hours….

I’ve had days where I’ll sit down, with a blank sheet of paper, and come up with NOTHING after a course of an eight hour work day.  Me, just sitting.  Not coming up with one solid idea.

Therefore, the sitting and not physically working is the absolute hardest part.

In retrospect though, I’ve had days where I’m doing the laundry, dishes and have the television blaring, and I’ll knock out ten stellar ideas in a row.  Even with a headache!

I used to think that sitting around trying to think of an idea and coming up empty-handed was a day wasted.  Actually, it’s not.  Those hours of nothingness soak deep into your subconsciousness, and maybe a day (or two) later, they’re form like mold and produce material.  Amazing how that works.

The frustrating part is when you would rather be using the time drawing.  Because drawing is a guaranteed use of time, unlike coming up with ideas.  You can sometimes meet the quota of ideas in an hour – or 40 hours – where as drawing is predictable, and one knows how long it’s going to take to put the ideas on paper.

I’m a very impatient person.  I constantly like to be moving, doing SOMETHING, so sitting around is hard for me.  I have learned though, that it’s those moments of coming up with absolutely nothing are what works the brain muscles into something pretty decent.

Who ever thought sitting around was a waste of time is really full of it.


4 Responses to “Sitting Around…..Staring”

  1. George January 26, 2011 at 4:16 pm #

    It seems like the days where I feel that I HAVE to think of something hilarious are so difficult. When I try to come up with something, I can’t. If it doesn’t matter whether I have an idea or not, I get
    em by the truckload. I think it’s pressure that controls our creative juices.

    Once I come up with one idea, a few more roll out. Next thing I know, I’ve made up for those “wasted” days where nothing produced.

  2. Nate Fakes January 27, 2011 at 9:44 am #

    Pressure sometimes kills my creativity as well. I notice that with the local comics I do. I’ve found that sitting around longer tends to work….but it’s VERY time consuming for that one, golden idea! I wish I had an intern for times like that…..

  3. DadaHyena February 14, 2011 at 7:24 pm #

    The almighty deadline is a great incentive to get work done, although it doesn’t inspire a lot of creativity.

    Funniest ideas come to me whenever I immerse myself in something overly dramatic or miserable (melodramatic movies, Goth music, etc); your mind goes into “MST3K mode” and you start coming up with really funny stuff to combat all the misery.

    Well, it works for me…sometimes…

    • Nate Fakes February 24, 2011 at 5:59 pm #

      MST3K works wonders! I’ve used that method a few times sitting in front of the computer. Just switch it over to YouTube, and let the inspiration flow!

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