Happy & Sad Dreams

Hey friends,

Sorry, this blog has been inactive the past month or so. I’ve been prioritizing other projects and IGOTAJOB.

Not saying what this job is at until I’ve finalized paperwork…mostly because my brain is still telling me that it’s not real even though I know it is. It probably won’t feel real until the first day of work which is coming up on March 13. In the meantime, I’m moving to New York City without a place to stay and lots of craziness as a result. Well, that’s not entirely true…I have family in Connecticut that is letting me crash there for a couple days while my dad and I go apartment searching. After that, the only plans are to make an Airbnb reservation for the rest of the month. I leave for the city this Sunday, March 6th. Life has gone from 5 mph to 100 mph what feels like overnight.

To say I’m excited is an understatement. I’m absolutely terrified too. But the good kind of terror. The kind of terror that you just are so excited to pursue that you’re running at a cliff full speed with only a very thin bungee cord and a very brief safety talk. I’m so unprepared but so ready to spring at this opportunity. Life is going to be insane for the next month and I will be updating this blog as much as possible.

I’m thinking about daily uploads here again. Ones that function similar to a journal so that I don’t forget all the little details and moments of the move and memories I’m about to make. I am so ignorant right now of all the business and movement New York City is going to hit me over the head with, but I’m so excited to try my best and live there.

In other news, a sad one, some of my childhood is leaving me. My favorite video store, The Video Station is closing. It hurts like hearing a friend has passed to know that my weekends will never again hear “Can you pick up _____ film/movie/tv show from the Video Station?”

It’s a relic that shaped my childhood, my dreams, inspiring me, and gave me a goal I didn’t realize I had. I want to design title sequences at some point during my art journey and the movie magic love comes from this place. I owe The Video Station for teaching me about stories. It’s a library of artistic moments that have shaped some of the stories I tell today. My dad said it sadly, “I will no longer look forward to Friday evenings.” It’s true. Every time I’ve left Boulder some of the things I miss most are watching videos and TV with the family, eating dinner, and going for walks with the pets and my mother. But crowding around the TV to watch a film my dad grabbed from The Video Station was always something I loved. Fresh popcorn (not that microwave kind), green apples, blankets with the lights low all huddled on the couch to anticipate the film found on the shelves of this place.

It’s sad to hear, not something unexpected, but sad. I’m sorry that it happened and some part of me wants to find a way to fight back, but I’m not sure how. How do you bring a video store back when everyone wants convenience? I’ll admit Netflix is easier to watch sometimes, but it’s never had all the titles I want to see. There’s no charming surprise of a title there, just algorithms that tell me what I’ve already seen in a different form. I’ll miss the recommendations and the charm of browsing, finding that story I didn’t know I wanted to watch.

To The Video Station, Thank you for giving me a foundation of stories to live by. Horse films that I rented out constantly, horror and sci-fi I couldn’t get instantly from Netflix, foreign films I’ve never heard of, and stories that bring me joy. Thank you for being here and I’ll miss you greatly, old friend.



Art Therapy

Took a couple days off there. It was a bit weird. The first night I was out sick with a migraine. Glad that went away. Yesterday I was stunned into silence.

I took today to process the whole election and figure out the next step I want to take. My initial reaction was to create. I didn’t create because I didn’t know what to create. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to abstract my anger and hurt or find inspirational quotes to illustrate and animate. I’m still unsure about what I want to create in this stunned fear, anger, and confusion about America. I do know that I want to make something.

I’m thinking of so many ways to illustrate and design and just make from this. If anyone wants to collaborate I’m considering that as a possibility. Having people make their feelings through art in a giant collaboration of their take on what the hell just happened. It can be in the form of animation, illustration, words, poetry, and so much more. I just know that he is not representative of my values and I want to find creative and constructive ways to illustrate those feelings.

I’m still processing how to express these feelings that I don’t necessarily have words for. Art has always been the way I deal with the difficult moments of life. It’s always been a voice for words that I don’t have. So, if people want to illustrate their feelings in some way…I will feature them here or on my twitter. I think we can all use some art therapy right now.

You can illustrate whatever you need to create. For example part of me wants to create a giant thing with Trump hair out of clay then, with claymation, smash it. I don’t know how to do that nor is it something I think I would post, but it’s how I currently feel. It’s a valid set of emotions that just imagining as a possible art piece makes me feel better. Another art piece I want to create is hope for the future. Finding quotes that make me feel better and making into a kinetic type video. Some of you are happy about the results and you’re welcome to illustrate your happiness. This post idea is biased towards those who aren’t, but if you’re happy, please create art that shows that.

I don’t know if anyone will send me art, but I’ll be creating something. Because it’s how I’m going to process all my feelings. I encourage you to make and share it with me and others via social media on IG or Twitter @zonaefly or comment below.

Till tomorrow friends,

Oscar Lettering for Inside Out

I found one of the quotes I wanted to illustrate from the Oscars.

“There are days you’re going to feel sad, you’re going to feel angry, you’re going to feel scared, that’s nothing you can choose. But you can make stuff. Make films. Draw. Write. It’ll make a world of difference. ” — Pete Docter, best animated feature winner for Inside Out

There’s a couple more, but I didn’t have time for them tonight. I hope this quote inspires you as much as it did me.

Still Nervous & Birthdays

Day 36 of 365.

I’m still nervous about this video, but regardless of feelings I’m marching forward. I didn’t have as much time to focus on my videos tonight. It was my dad’s birthday so I spent the time and energy I usually spend on making my videos, on his card instead and enjoying the company of family. I created a few quick stylized sketches of what I want my video to look like. Both the card & sketches are below. I’ll try to make another update tomorrow night animation wise, but I’m spending tomorrow and Sunday learning how to Letterpress! Super excited for that, and will have some updates soon!


When you’re just scared

Day 34 of 365.

So, today I’ve written a script and I have a solid idea for what I want to make for February’s animation. The problem is that I’m fucking terrified.

I’ve spent the last few hours, since writing this script, debating about posting this or even continue working on this particular project. The thing is that I can’t find any reason not to post it other that my own fear of it. I’m not even sure why I’m scared of it to be honest. I just know it makes me uncomfortable even thinking about releasing it to the world.

So, half my battle is just figuring out if I want to tell this story or if I want to be afraid of it.

But quite honestly, isn’t that the point of art? To be vulnerable and provoke conversation? Or at least that’s the point of art to me. To make sense of the difficulties, the struggles of life. To distill something that might be words or nonsensical feelings into something people can relate to. To be vulnerable with it.

It’s weird because this particular blog is really just becoming a philosophical debate between my position on what art is and how much I really want to throw myself out there. And that’s why I know I need to make this video. Because it makes a statement. A statement about myself, my thoughts, and the type of art I want to, guess create? to empower with? I don’t know. This is obviously causing quite an internal debate, and in the end all I can really be sure of is that I’m quite terrified. And I know I shouldn’t be. But I am, and I can’t change that fear. All I can do is continue on and be brave enough to own up to the fact that I am scared.

I didn’t even have to tell you I was afraid. I could have just written a different story, but I’m not going to do that. Because sometimes you need to tell the stories you are most afraid to tell. It’s an honest idea, which comes from myself, and that’s terrifying. It’s terrifying to even think about it putting out there.

Honestly, I’m likely intensifying this fear for something that ultimately means much more to me than it probably will to you. You’ll probably look at it and ask me why I was afraid at all. To be honest, I’m still not sure why I’m so afraid of this idea. I just am. I’ll probably wake up tomorrow and wonder why I made such a big deal about this. But at least I’ve admitted to being scared. That’s step one.

To combat this intense fear & vulnerability I’m just moving forward toward my moodboards. I get the feeling that I’ll be less afraid of it once I start working on it. Also maybe in hindsight it’ll be better to keep this story a secret until I finish. It might make more of an impact…All I know, right now, is that I’m too afraid to post the content but still want to make it. It’s weird, because I know I need to make this video, but at the same time I’m absolutely terrified of it. I need to make it to just get past the fear.

Below is the moodboard for this animation. I also put in some music that’s been stuck in my head as I continue to think about this project.


Snackadoodle Animatic

Day 15 of 365.

Start of an animatic for the Snackadoodle vs Dog/Family animation I’m working on. Very rough start to it. I’m still working on ideas for an escape plan. Also thinking about some different angles for the scene. I tried to just get the scene out as fast as I could, because I tend to get focused on details. Also, I’m running late tonight.

As far as goals tomorrow I want to have one full animatic, the rough of the story from beginning to end. So tomorrow I plan to refine the beginning scenes and create an escape plan for the rat. If time allows some character development for the rat, dog, and people. It’d be nice to have a bit of a rough sheet I can look at for details. Depends a bit on time though. The main goal is just having the story down.


Note: GIF is on repeat and starts with the rat running around the picture frames. Probably should have uploaded in video form…but I’m going to wait to do that until I have a full video animatic.