The line between confidence and stupidity is the one I feel like I’ve spent my entire career straddling.

I’ve bet heavily over the years with mixed results, but all in all it’s been a net positive. Or that’s what I tell myself anyway.

I credit growing up with no real safety net with emboldening me to take big chances.  When you’ve got nothin’ to lose, I guess it’s easier to swing for the fences.There have definitely been times it’s paid off. When I moved to san francisco in 1997 with like 1500 bucks saved up and no real clue what i was doing, it was stressful and often times scary. I didn’t really have anyone I could call on for help, which meant sometimes sleeping in the car or working jobs I wasn’t crazy about, But you make it work. Eventually I found an apartment and a decent job, started art school, and a few months in, my new situation was well worth the pain it had cost to get there.

Similarly, when we started our studio years ago, I can remember being terrified about quitting my full time games job to start something with no security. I’d worked so hard to get to where I was, in this cushy job, making a comfortable salary…it was the first time in my life I had achieved that level of stability. But I saw an opportunity to not only grow artistically but also potentially do things more on my own terms, so I jumped.

Now with the studio, it’s definitely not always been easy. To be honest there have been times I wished I’d just continued working a full time gig at a game studio with drinks in the fridge and employee stock benefits instead of ending up in sometimes terrible situations with no real backup plan. There were points so dire that I couldn’t even confide in my closest friends or even my parents, because I didn’t want them freaking out. When it’s so bad you can’t complain out loud about it, thats when you know its gone to shit.

But you know what? You figure it out. Even if you take some licks (or lots of licks) in the process, you will have learned something valuable. And if I look back on the experiences and the relationships I’ve made over the time we’ve been doing this, it’s been worth it to me.

Growth comes at a cost. Usually it’s uncomfortable and requires some sort of sacrifice. But the alternative is not growing or learning and that makes for boring fucking work so…

I try to equate it to painting (because everything in life can be equated to painting)! Where sometimes the best outcomes are born from leaps of faith and taking wild chances.  it’s that one big bold mark that took guts to throw down that the entire painting seems to hang off of. While great art can often require some level of planning, I’d argue it also requires a similar level of risk. You have to be able to make those big corrections and adjustments of something’s not working, and stick that landing once you’ve jumped.

But all in all, you get one shot at this and I think in the end its better to have a life of rich experiences than regrets. Nobody is more in control of your path than you are. You determine the decisions you make, So remember to take chances and bet on yourself.

Been so busy with work I’ve only managed to sand down and glaze this little painting of Bob.

Love how sanding helps “blow things out” and soften details.

It also cleans the surface of dust and debris so glazes go on very nicely and evenly.

Once this dries I’ll go in with some opaque cools, mid tones and shadows.