If you've been following along, it's been a hell of a year, filled with projects galore. I just finished up the third quarter review post earlier this month. In case you missed it, you can check out the Quarterly Review here. The big news from this quarter was the creation of my Patreon page, though, and that's what this post is mostly about.
Patreon connects creatives with the audience that loves them. It allows them to engage more with each other through exclusive content on a membership-based platform for as little as $1/month. I love it. It means I get to keep creating, and you get to keep getting the benefitof that which I create. Note the orange button up on the right-hand side? Go check out my page, see what you think, and if you like what you see, if you like what I do here, I encourage you to become a patron. Remember, patrons will not only keep getting posts here, but they will also get exclusive and advanced content that is only on Patreon!
This is my last post through the end of the year. I'm continuing to focus on some other projects for now. Freedom Fridays will return, but only periodically. When it comes back, there will be a mix of things: tips, motivational quotes, recommendations, and, of course, updates on all my projects. That said, you should definitely check out my Patreon page for the most up-to-date news, and exclusive content. I will mostly be posting there from now on.
The second half of this summer has been a crazy one, to say the least. I spent the majority of this year preparing for the launch of a number of projects, and my goodness, it's been an all-consuming kind of time, the kind where people wonder where you've gone, and if you took your sanity with you. (I'm sure it's around here somewhere.)
The big news to come out of this period of intense work comes in two parts: Patreon & the new Tricky Fish Photography site. I'll talk about the TFP - which officially launches today!!! - below, but first...
Okay, if you've been watching my social media feeds, you've undoubtedly seen the posts introducing my new Patreon page. I'm very excited about it, and already have gained some patrons. You can access it in this post, or click on the badge in the left hand column. I'll do a post on this in a week or two to explain more about it. In the meantime, check out the intro video for it:
Marketing & Social Media
I've had a definite dive in social media presence while preparing for this launch. I barely even looked at Facebook. I like to think of it like being a musician in the studio before they drop a new album and start touring. Moving forward, however, there will be a lot more social media. Check out the "Orbits" page on my main website to know which to follow. And, as always, subscribe or follow me here!
As for other marketing, I've been doing some re-design. Don't worry. No fundamental design changes. I've just been polishing up my logos, and creating some designs for things like stickers and bookmarks. I've also re-designed my business cards, and I can't wait to see how they look when they arrive. Here's a taste what's on the way:
I'm brainstorming ideas for future webinars and presentations, and with the launch of Patreon, I'll be able to open up membership-based benefits to help others trying to achieve their dreams. I hope to get that moving along in 2019.
There's been a great deal of reflection this year and, while it's been rough, it's a good thing. I've been confronting a lot of difficult stuff from my past, and focusing a lot on my overall health. You can read some of my revelations on my Changeling blog.
Since April, I've been going to the gym, and about a month ago, I signed up for the YMCA five minutes from my house. The makes it easier to get over there, as I've shaved about 40-50 min off my drive time, and it has some really cool features. I'm going to have to do a post about this Y and other Y's in general.
As far as my other health has been concerned, I have been suffering from some chronic health problems in the last couple years or so, and it makes life a bit more of a challenge than I'd really like...which is to say, it makes me miserable more often than not. That said, I'm taking steps to heal, and trying to listen to my body more, when it tells me something is wrong, or that it's time to take a rest.
Action in this area has taken a bit of a backseat as I gather information. SCOTUS has been a big issue and I'm carefully reviewing Kavanaugh in regards to his reviews and actions toward people with disability. The Autism Self-Advocacy Network does a lot of research into this, and if you're interested, I highly recommend following their Twitter feed. As for the Changeling blog, I will get back to it eventually. I am still processing a lot from this year, and my other projects make it difficult to fully articulate some of my experiences and feelings on this matter.
This project is also on the backburner as I initiate some important endeavors. I look to be going full gear on this come 2019, especially once spring hits, when I can maybe start building. I can hardly wait.
Sometime in early summer, I discovered that I would not be able to make it to Burning Man this year. That was a hard one to wrap my head around. It isn't that I haven't missed years; it's that, ostensibly, I won't be going for the next couple years, and so this was to be my last one for a bit. That said, the Playa always seems to find a way to suck me back out to its dusty goodness, and Playa Magic is real, y'all. Anything is possible. Still, I was not completely starved of travel opportunities.
I've learned a lot of cool stuff about how Council Bluffs is changing for the better, and it if it keeps on its current trajectory, will eclipse Omaha for an art/cultural center in the next few years. No joke. Keep up the good work, CB, and stay tuned to Ransomed Roads for a new type of post coming soon (November-ish, in fact).
I have never thought of myself as a Las Vegas fan. It already has two strikes against it, being in a desert and being hot most of the year. When you add in that it's mostly about gambling, sporting events, and shopping, I pretty much yawn. So color me surprised to find myself enjoying the hell out of my family trip to Sin City. Stay tuned to Ransomed Roads this fall as I recount a little of that trip.
I'm working on new stuff for Ransomed Roads. I hope to start a new series of posts on cool local stuff called "Compass Culture". There's also the Vegas project this fall, and finishing up with the Summer of Color, which is, sadly, slated for next year. It's just been too busy, and I suddenly found myself in the wrong headspace to talk about that move. Also for next year, I hope to do more tips & tricks to correspond with early release info for my Patreon page.
There has been so very much writing this year. I did the math one day a couple weeks ago, and if I average out the amount of time I've spent writing over my lifetime, then I have far surpassed the oft extolled 10,000 hours required to become a master at something. Of course, that theory has been debunked, and I would hardly call myself a "master" of writing. I would say I've gotten pretty proficient, and that took a lot of time (plus that theory has pretty much been debunked). Anyhoo...
I've had to take a break from writing nonetheless, as I also do it for my work, and have also been concentrating so hard on my other projects (which also require writing, e.g. web copy), that thinking about writing just wore me out. Once the launches for the fall/winter season are complete, I should be able to get back to work on them in November, so bear with me.
The Lost Title Cards
This summer, I started a new series on my movie blog called "Behind the Scene". It's fairly short posts that focus on a little tidbit of movie trivia that you might now know. It's pretty fun, and I look forward to getting back to them.
Moving to the next level with freelance blog-writing. My time with Comnio, alas, ended when the owner decided to dissolve the company. I had a great time working with all those folks, and wish them all the best. In the meantime, I am working on getting some more freelance blog-writing gigs. I even have a writer's portfolio, focusing mostly on blog-writing, up online:
I couldn't be more excited about this. I have been longing for this website for well over a decade, and I've been working on it for most of this year. As I was building it myself through Adobe's portfolio site editor, there were a lot of elements that had to come together, and I needed to get pics together and edited for some initial galleries. So much easier said than done. But I prevailed, and the results are pretty stellar, if I do say so myself.
My shops on Redbubble, Zazzle, and Society6 are technically live, but I don't have projects up yet. Stay tuned for that one as the month wears on.
I've been focusing on a few different projects this quarter. I got to go to the Lauritzen Gardens, and have spent some time getting horizon shots from Council Bluffs's many vantage points.
Omaha Comic Con (OCon) & Film-making
The big project here is that I actually dressed up for OCon:
Me as Domino from Deadpool 2
...and that my brother and I put together another OCon video this year. Actually, it was two videos. My brother conceived the idea, and he and his friend built their costumes and props themselves. I wrote scripts, built scenery, and consulted on costumes for the second half of the piece, was Director of Photography, and helped direct them in their individual scenes, recorded sound and effects....all on my smartphone (Samsung Galaxy S8). Here's the finished product:
We're thinking about starting our own film production company.
There's been hardly any movement on this, as I decided to take time off to work on other projects. To be honest, my passion for this project had waned somewhat, and I was beginning to wonder if I wanted to do it anymore. Fortunately, it seemed mostly due to my need to / interest in finishing up some of the aforementioned projects above that had me feeling frustrated. I just didn't have time to give it the proper attention. Now, I'm committed for the holiday season, and feeling a lot more excited about it, so, as always, stay tuned.
I'm currently working on getting my new inventory prepared to post to the new site. In the meantime, you can still check out the Etsy shop
The Darndest Things
The Darndest Things has been on Instagram and Pinterest a lot lately. In fact, she's a Pinterest queen!!! Check her out.
Arts & Crafts
The Totems Show was in August. I love painting, and loved connecting with my spirit in the creation process. One of the funnest parts of that was getting to do a talk on what Totems and the art process does for me. If I can get my hands on it, I'll post the video here some time.
That's pretty much it for now. I'm excited to see what Q4 brings, and I hope everyone has a lovely holiday season!
Plots & Schemes for Q4 2018:
More more more...There will be more focus on blogs as I get deeper into autumn....I think. We'll see how this month goes.
Tricky Fish Photography
More galleries, prints of my work, and more.
New products, new lines.
Working on body movement in prep to get back in front of the camera.
Alternative (question what is normal) and innovative thinking for disability (like how tiny houses can help people who have disability); looking at the arts & alternative lifestyles.
Currently too busy, but want to get back to ASL, and become more fluent.