Digital Disatisfaction

Working on the magazine, most of my work recently has been done sat in the glare of a computer screen. It's been this way for a while now, when we were making Dark Descent we spent whole days sat behind a computer.

I think there's something strange that happens when you're on a comp. For example when animating at a computer, at the end of the day, you dont seem to feel the same level of satisfaction as you would if you'd spent the whole day working on paper & a light box. Same for writers - filling 30 notebook pages is much more satisfying than a hundred Word document ones.. Even if you'd completed twice as much work, working digitally you are left feeling a little empty.

I think this is because of the loss of the whole physical game; When you're working with your hands, you've got this over here, this over there, you have to get out your chair, go get stuff, look through drawers etc etc. What'smore you can pick it up at the end of the day, move it about, look at it. It's there. Sat infront of a box, your whole work is created within the box & when the light blips off your work has vanished for the time being.

I'm not bashing the box; i'm a huge fan of computers, especially when it comes to animation; whole films can be made in the box goddamit! Go consult Ralph Bakshi .

So what it's all about for me is overcoming this digital dissatisfaction. A couple of things I do;
  • If i'm going to be working at a computer predominantly for the day, I lay out a little schedule. eg:-
1 hour - Draw up sketches for bla bla bla
3 hours - Design template layout for next issue
 -------1 hour - have lunch --------
2 hours - contact new contributors / advertisers
etc etc.

  • Another thing I think is important to do is to keep a list of all your achievements throughout the day. Whatever it is, it's nice to have a check list that you can look back at come the end of the day. Even things like 'updated the Magazine Facebook page'. It may seem small & needless to record, but it still took 20 minutes/an hour of your time.
  • Also, be active elsewhere in your life. I think this is why so many people are getting into running now; you spend all day at a desk, then go for a run, helps revert that inbalance in nature.
I find these little methods also stop me procrastinating so much, or atleast, help me be aware of when I am procrastinating. If you have a day schedule, regardless of how feeble it may seem, it still lets you be aware of the track you are on.

Also to be aware of how innumerably handy these little whirring boxes can be; sending out emails may seem simple, but look at your immense productivity! 40 years ago, writing all those letters, heading to the post-office, mailing them, that woulda taken some time..

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