Hi guys. I'm alive :D I doubt anyone noticed, but the past few weeks, I was more inactive than ever. As in I wasn't even spying any animations, scanning the forum, or socializing on Discord. At all. Part of my hiatus was because I was immensely focused on job applications (graduating soon). Part of it was cuz I've been hired for freelance work to edit a sci-fi short film. But I needed a break because what shook me the most was that I was recently rejected from MFA film production program at my university. As much as I tried to not let it get me down, it really (momentarily) stung my confidence. I was shocked that in spite of having a work history of three internships, recommendation letters from professors and company professionals, Dean's Listed grades, a few festival awards, and a massive portfolio of work dating back to 2007, I somehow didn't make it into the MFA program in the SAME school that I'm currently getting my Bachelor of Arts at. For a moment, it felt as if everything I've built up to in the past 2 years of networking and crewing and animating time-sacrifice was for nothing. It was the first time in years where I wasn't having my usual uncertain existential crisis, but was just downright depressed. Of course, it was just a feeling. That moment has past. I'm striving to find other ways to advance my career as an editor/director and realize my projects. So far, things are looking significantly better (several interviews for entry level company positions on the way). Grad school allows me to take certain production classes and utilize the school's resources to make the independent films I want to direct, but I probably have enough connections to do them without the university's help now. It'll be rough, but what else is new in Hollywood lol. The point is I want to remind everyone (including myself) that no matter what you're going through, you can't give up. We as artists will always have moments of uncertainty, tragedy, laziness, etc. It's all part of the process. Acknowledge that setbacks are temporary and do your best to build habits that will pick yourself up. So if you're on a down curve right now, try to set mini daily goals for yourself. Animate a little. Draw a little. Eat a pancake on top of a bunny. Whatever you do, keep following your interests and passions one way or the other. You'd be surprised at the results down the road when you dedicate at least 30 minutes everyday to healthy small habits that will build your motivation and mental focus over time. Seriously, read about the subconscious and its impact on your body. Dat shit is mindblowing. The reason why some animators/content creators feel demotivated and quit is that they associate their conditions and feelings with their work and don't rely on habits that set up their work and conditions for their feelings. It's ok to break and contemplate life (I happen to do the latter a lot at night xD). Just make sure you hit the reset button eventually. Well, who am I to talk. I still haven't finished the Maple series I started 5+ years ago lmao I've got a lot on my plate before graduation, but I'll be around. I'm happy to share links of stuff I've been up to as well. Hmu with a message if you have questions about anything. Surprise, I'm still a present mod xD #OldAFtho Stay awesome guys, happy animating/creating!