“The strongest lesson about being a professional was learning that I don’t know everything, I never will know everything, and that’s incredibly exciting.”
In a few days, the end of a decade brings the start of a new one. The first day of January marks the beginning of something new for everyone, whether they realize it or not. 2010 through 2019 was a wild ride for me, and I’d like to reflect upon it today before mentioning my future ideas.
So much happened from 2010 to 2019 for me. If I had to make an oversimplified list of life milestones, it’d look like this:
- 2014 – Graduated high school and started my college career in Pittsburgh, living on my own for the first time far away from home
- 2016 – Graduated College and moved back to my hometown to start my first full time job.
- 2017 – Moved into my first apartment
- 2018 – Established my website and personal branding
While this seems short, quite a lot happened in-between each milestone. This time period is what I like to consider the experimental years.
High school: 2010 – 2014
“Tonic Shock” Electronic Soundtrack LP
I started high school in 2010, and during this time I was teaching myself a lot about video production and music production in my free time after school. It was between 2010 and 2014 that I created my music albums KrimZon and Tonic Shock, both of which were largely experimental and served as learning experiences for me. During this time, I would still experiment with my father’s DSLR cameras to create homemade videos with my younger brother. YouTube became my biggest asset in learning how to edit and create fun visual effects.
While I technically started experimenting with video production before 2010, it wasn’t until high school that I started really grasping what it’s all about. This is what led to my decision of going to college to make a real career out of my hobby. The strongest moments of growth I’ve had were during my college years from 2014 to 2016. It was during this time period that I finally connected the dots from my self-learning. In conjunction to growing as a person, I learned what it meant to be a professional in the industry.
College: 2014 – 2016
“Tune Fusion” TV Show Opening Title Sequence
To date, college served as my best experimental years in the 2010’s. It was during this time that I established a professional portfolio with some of my favorite pieces, most notably Tune Fusion and an animated PSA on Censorship. In between my studies, I was still teaching myself new techniques and theory. This is when I started working on my recent music album Karapathea, and further pushed myself into visual effects and motion graphics. Graduating college and moving back to my hometown lead to my first full-time job search, where I have grown and continue to grow.
“Overall, my focus was to get on my feet and further understand what it means to survive in our modern world.”
Becoming a professional video producer and visual effects artist taught me a lot about deadlines, client interactions, quality control, and a whole host of things better left for another blog post. This has led to a realization of my abilities and where I’d like to improve. The strongest lesson about being a professional was learning that I don’t know everything, I never will know everything, and that’s incredibly exciting. Video Production as an industry is constantly changing, and the 2010’s was a fantastic showcase of such growth. It feels like an honor to grow alongside it.
Post-College: 2016 – 2019
This time frame was largely dedicated to learning what it means to truly be independent in this crazy world of ours. I moved into my first apartment with my long-distance girlfriend and continued my work as a professional in the industry. It was during these years where I really started to understand the weight of terms like bills, health insurance, and taxes. You already understand, so I’ll spare the details.
“100 Days of Motion” Daily Animation Challenge
Overall, my focus was to get on my feet and further understand what it means to survive in our modern world. This still didn’t distract me from further experimenting and working on new things. If anything, I’ve been pretty quiet during these years compared to what I’m used to.
Karapathea was developed slowly and eventually released in 2018. In that same year, I started 100 Days of Motion in March and had a brand planned known as Shocksense Cinema. This was a short-lived endeavor for reasons I won’t discuss in this blog post, but the short story is a mix of self-realization and the legal ability to even use the name. In April of 2019, I started teaching myself 3D modeling in Blender and continue to enhance this skill. Although not formally announced, I’ve been experimenting with various motion graphics projects, music, sound effects, texture building, and some short films with friends.
The Next Decade: 2020 and Beyond
For me, the last decade was really building up to this moment…
I’ve become comfortable with keeping quiet about what I do, but something kept pushing me to become more expressive about what I’m working on. Stints of publicly announcing my music or video projects still lead me back to my quiet place. Honestly, this is the fear of failure that’s plagued me for so long, but I’ve noticed this fear has been shedding more and more.
Starting January of 2020, I’ll be putting a lot of focus on the projects I’ve been wanting to make for quite some time now. The fear of failure no-longer influences my decisions like it used to. I’ll be creating music videos for some songs on my currently released albums, as well as developing new music. Alongside that, I have various short film ideas, sketches, and tutorials in mind. I’m still ironing out what I’ll be working on specifically for 2020, but I’m excited nonetheless.
To those of you who support me, I could never thank you enough. Have a fantastic New Year’s Eve, and Happy New Year!