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Tue Jun 8, 2010, 6:10 AM

You have probably experienced the same issue at least once when you stand on your pathway of life and all of a sudden you are in front of a fork with three turnoffs and each turnoff opens different big doors for your future yet only one of them will lead you to fulfill your dream but it's hard and you know it's not really feasible because:

I'm torn between decisions of what I can do with my life or how I will go on. One is for sure, all the pathways I have to choose from will lead me to a different ending yet they all have the same in common, namely arts. I want to progress, want to do bigger things, want to jump out of the box in which I am stuck in right now. The world is such a large place with so many possibilities opened for me yet I somehow can't reach them as there is always something that stands in between my dreams and the resulting plans to fulfill those.

Since longer than a year, I simply jumped off all formalities and supports from the state and made myself become a fulltime freelance artist. It's a very hard job for very less money and I only can go on with this as long as my current lifestyle doesn't deviate and throws me out back into the real hard life where every penny needs to be turned three times before the decision to spend it can be made. I can't afford a health insurance as they are way too overpriced for freelancers and independent people and even though I always promise myself to get this problem fixed, I always have to step back in fear because of all the enormous costs that would rip me open. I wish there was a better solution in Germany for being insured for a cheap price because everyone should be able and also willing to have one.

The work I am doing for my commissioners are part of my passion and part of my survival. I love doing them and always try depicting your characters and ideas the best I can yet I tear my butt open not to fear that my account gets emptier until I have nothing left.
I have also become a fulltime workaholic, always thinking, always planning, organizing, being able to be creative at the push of a button and being able to kick my butt when muse and inspiration is overwhelming me to do other things than commissions for example doing personal artworks.

The only thing which I absolutely appreciate and love with this lifestyle is that I can plan myself free days off whenever something is up or when an event is going to take place somewhere. I can also work whereever I want. Some commissions have been painted underneath a tree on a mossy forest ground with some little bites to eat and music, for example.

This pathway would be the one going straight on. If I would simply walk straight on this pathway, who knows when I will find the next fork with open possibilities again?

One of the turnoffs looks very pleasant and smooth yet I would have to do what I actually despise: for that plan, I would need to try getting support money from the state to finance myself a flat in a city and get my portfolio and application done for next year's University course of Communication Design as applying at that school takes many steps and several months until the decision has been made to take me for an entrance test. This pathway is connected with losing my current lifestyle and many other risks.
I don't want to become a puppet of the state, don't want to be bound yet I want to go on somehow.
A good thing is that I will be able to have my own flat together with my mate and we both would study. I would partially have back my complete independence by giving away what I'm doing here right now.

The last turnoff is very broad, extremely long and shows me many large walls which need to be overmastered before I can be able to walk on the very brittly and sharp ground. There is a door which opens up the fulfillment of my dream. Entertainment Design.
You probably wouldn't believe this when you had a short peek into my gallery but my very hidden dream, which I'm trying to oppress because of the near impossibility, is to work for the game industry, film industry and overall entertainment. That turnoff leads to America, which is very extremely far away. Other than my other possibilities, this one is the very hardest yet the one which offers everything I wanted to do, ever. That would be a journey that needs to be planned thoroughly and well to make the last steps, going to the one school of which I am talking about, a lot smoother.
Of course, as everything, this is connected to a hell of a lot of money which people would only be able to afford if they either have a scholarship, a student loan or very rich parents.

Not only that I stand in front of a big wall marked with a massive Dollar symbol, I would need to leave really everything behind, if worst, my mate because he probably wouldn't be up for this or wouldn't be able to come along. My inspiration and my muse is just healthy when my heart really is happy, too, which it is right now. Yet I know that I might miss a wonderful opportunity to make a dream come true, to make something out of my art and to give me the feeling I actually can reach something big in my life.

I feel like I stand in that turnoff and look back to my current patway and sometimes peek over the other one. Yet whenever I'm trying to take a step forwards, I go one back. My head is filled and heavy. I always have a high feeling of enthusiasm followed by a deep feeling of doubt.

This is why I feel torn and I have to decide quick as there is nobody who can stop the time.
Maybe when I came to a better plan which might be feasible for me, I won't feel that way anymore.

Until the decision has been made, I will stay and enjoy what I usually do.

Dwelling and drawing.

  • Mood: Questionable
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Shaile-shadow Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010
i do not know much about the big stuff yet, but...

i would say follow your dream, if that what would truly make you happy, then all other choices should be shut down.

also the entertainment industry is HUGE, and there are plenty of companies or places that would love your artwork on there stuff, or what ever.

in the end follow what makes YOU happy.

thats what i always tell myself.
enigmaticworld Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Professional Artisan Crafter
How old do you think you will be when you'll finally realise your dreams?
I can tell you... much older or dead before this happens on its own.
So get to work. Go after your dreams. You'll never fell more screwed over in your life if you don't.
JWiesner Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010
Ich verstehe dass du nicht eine "Puppe" des Staates sein willst, aber andererseits gibt dir der Staat auch die Chancen/Ausbildungen die du willst. Zweitens kommt Geld das Leute verdienen an sich auch *irgendwie* vom Staat, und du brauchst ja auch eben Geld. :c Es ist ein System, das man knacken muss, um gross rauszukommen. Und stell dir vor, sobald du genug Kohle hast, kannst du dir das Stück Land leisten das du willst. Und darin baust du dir Sachen an, dann kannst du wieder komplett selbstständig sein. c:

Mach einfach weiter wie du gut fühlst, und es wird schon alles gut gehen.
WolfenAmphithere Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Professional Artist
You probably wouldn't believe this when you had a short peek into my gallery but my very hidden dream, which I'm trying to oppress because of the near impossibility, is to work for the game industry, film industry and overall entertainment.

Suppressing your dreams is about the worst thing you can do for yourself. I'd advise you to reconsider your concerns about leaving your comfort zone.

My art teacher, Chawky Frenn, is the most amazing person I have ever met. He was born in Lebanon. When he was ~20 he immigrated to America (without his family), with one dream: "I want to paint." When he got here, he had no money, no job, and didn't even speak English. He didn't give up. He took every opportunity he was given to achieve his goal. He made a decision when he was young: "I don't care if I never get married, I don't care if I don't have a car, I don't care if I'm rich, I don't care. I just want to paint." He went to school to learn English, then worked as a bus boy at a restaurant for many years, earning just enough money to afford a studio space in Boston. He lived in his studio as well as worked there, and eventually got a job teaching. Since then, he's been extremely happy. He doesn't take anything for granted, he takes risks, and because of that, he's happy. He's very fond of asking his students "When you are on your death bed, what do you want to be able to say? 'God, give me another 10 years so I can get my beach house?' or 'God, thank you. I have no regrets.'"

I thoroughly believe you when you say you want to get into the entertainment industry. I've had a dream of being a game designer for the last 7+ years, and I know it's difficult. But I didn't stop, because it was what I wanted most :) I'm not there yet, but I've come a long way. Just 2-3 more years of college now for me! I wish you good luck with your dream, and I hope this is helpful in your decision :)
Rawliett Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Hobbyist Photographer
Hey, know how you feel about choosing the right path. And I know this is totally off the topic but I just started watching you and can't find any information on your commissions. Do you have a journal with the prices?
cantabile-reaper Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Is it necessary to come to America for game design? I have to tell you that America, despite what the news is portraying, is a sinking ship. The economy is awful. Regardless of what Obama says, there are no new sustainable new jobs. Even apart from all of that, there will be numerous difficulties facing you simply because you are foreign. I don't care what everyone else says. The opportunities in America are not fair, and they do discriminate against you if you aren't completely like them. A lot of scholarship opportunities, loans, whatever will not be available to you unless you have American citizenship or permanent resident status (both will take years to get...if you're lucky, decades if you're not). I'm facing these difficulties even though I've already lived here for 7 years. I'm a Canadian citizen. One one imagine that would be better off, but it isn't. The problem with this country is that so many companies and institutions don't care how talented and smart you are. They will always choose their own citizens, regardless of who is more capable. You've probably seen all the news coverage about the new law in Arizona about illegal immigrants. The Americans claim they're stealing jobs (even though without the "illegal immigrants" so many of the necessary but bottom-level jobs wouldn't get done) but the same situation applies everywhere else. Even if you are legally in the United States, they will still say that you are taking American jobs. It's getting even worse because there are no jobs so of course everyone is paranoid.

America is not the answer. There are developing markets other places in the world. China is the biggest example although I'm not sure that's accessible to you. Even if you compare the two countries everything thinks to be the same, Canada is better off in this current economic crisis. The unemployment rate in the US is at around 10%. In Canada it's 8%. They're still arguing over universal healthcare in America. We've had it in Canada since 1946.

My story is this:

I have lived in America for 7 years, and I still do not have permanent resident status even though we have been applying. Next year, I will need to go to university. I have a straight-A school record, a 96 percentile (national) for the PSAT, just took the SAT ("real" college entrance exam type test) but expect a similar if not better score. However, all or most of the scholarships that other kids like me can apply for are off limits to me because they all require you to be either "American citizen or permanent resident." Furthermore, I can't legally get a real job in this country either because of the same problem.

In the end, I'm probably going to have to go back to Canada to go to school and live for the rest of my life.

Don't come to America. It doesn't matter how they say they don't discriminate and represent freedom. The message in all these policies is clear: They don't want us here.
Shaile-shadow Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010
i don't mean to start an arguement but...

right now people are exxagerating how badly the economy in the US is, yes it's getting worse, but how bad is it really? almost everyone in my family has a job, hell i have a job, at my workplace NOBODY has ever gotten laidoff, only time anybody ever leaves, is when they are fired(because of some theft) or they quit, hell there has been 8 new employees in the last 3 months.

also Public Healtcare sucks.... i will be paying for this healthcare for the next few years, but i will only get the coverage until 2012. i still don't know how much i am going to be paying for this dam healtcare. hell people who are illegal and are paid under the table will get coverage, and yet won't be paying a cent for it.

i'm sure nobody would like to pay for somebody elses expenses, when they are not paying up.

illegal immigration is a HUGE problem in the US, Arizona is trying to fix that by sending as many of them back home as they can, why?
because they ARE ILLEGAL. they are not supposed to be here, and they are taking jobs. Citizens shuld be the ones getting the job, otherwsie what would be the Point of been a citizen of a any country? if the non-citizens would be getting the same priviliges?

sorry for been off-topic.
cantabile-reaper Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Your family cannot be used to exemplify an entire economy. That is a scope far to broad to be justified by a case study. How bad is the economy? In pre-recession times, there were about 4.5 million new job openings per month. That number was 2.3 million last July, and while it's true that it has been improving, you have to remember that a vast amount of the new jobs the government is reporting are "Temporary Census jobs" which means that soon enough, they'll be eliminated (and those people who will be laid off will have to be paid compensation). And even those people who are not being laid off more likely than not have had to take pay cuts, increase their work load, or both. Of course, when given the option of taking less money or leaving your job, most people would choose to keep their job.

Our current unemployment level is 9.7%. (Keep in mind that unemployment does not include "discouraged workers" who give up looking for a job.) The normal estimated "full-employment" rate of unemployment (otherwise known as natural unemployment) is generally agreed to be around 4-5%. Note that full-employment does not mean everyone has a job. It only means that frictional unemployment (when people are between jobs, searching for jobs) exists.

Why does public healthcare suck? Does social security suck? You pay social security, and it is doubtful that you'll see any of that money by the time you are eligible to claim it. Healthcare will be part of your taxes, and you will see it immediately. You are currently paying insurance to private companies, and you are pretty much susceptible to price changes at their whim. I'm not arguing for illegal immigrants, but not all of them are escaping taxes. Plenty of people who are legal escape taxes.

When human beings come together in a society, they implicitly agree to look out for one another. A society is suppose to be mutually beneficial. You are already paying for other people in the form of social security. Furthermore, a portion of your taxes go to government programs, welfare, etc. If you want to stop paying for other people, stop paying taxes.

I agree that illegal immigration is a huge problem. That Arizona law, however, is just asking for civil suits. Furthermore, the amount of resources the enforcement of that law requires will outweigh whatever benefits may result. Are they going to hire people to constantly probe everyone who looks like a Mexican for papers? And if they do have papers? Just sit tight and weight for the class-action law suits.

Sure, citizens should have jobs, but what if you have a situation where you need to choose between an American citizen with a high school diploma and a non-American with a Master's Degree? The US allegedly prides itself on being a free market or capitalistic society. In other words, the economy is market-driven, governed by supply and demand. Patriotism might say that you should hire the American citizen, but common sense should tell you to hire the best man or woman for the job. The choosing of qualification over immigration status is the choosing of the advancement of society. The advancement of society, and subsequently the market/economy, will lead to the creation of new jobs. I can guarantee those newly created jobs will benefit American citizens.

That's the problem when people start talking about immigration. They always and only think of Mexicans who hop a fence somewhere in Texas. They always think of those people with minimal skills who take jobs as farm workers or waiters. But the problem is that the immigration process is equally difficult for people who go the legal way and for people with the skills to improve this country. You have to remember that an engineer or entrepreneur who creates a thousand new jobs is still technically an "illegal immigrant" if he or she does not have the proper papers. And yet, there is a distinction between what the two examples can contribute to society. Would you treat them the same?

Citizenship is the state of being a citizen of a particular social, political, or national community. Being a citizen of somewhere entails certain responsibilities as well as rights. It is your responsibility as a citizen to work towards the betterment of the society of which you are a part. Plenty of immigrants already do that, and yet they are still denied the citizenship status. Meanwhile, many Americans sit at home all day, doing nothing but driving up pollution, unemployment, and obesity. Citizenship is not only about rights and privileges. It's also about responsibility and contribution.
cantabile-reaper Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
*wait; pardon that.
Shaile-shadow Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010
i was going to make a better response, i doubt either of us wants to drag this much further.

i am 16 so, yes i am not fully aware of everything that goes on.

the economy is bad and getting worse.

i know alot about history, and from what i see this is nothing compared to what i have learned, or experienced.

i do not wish to keep dragging this longer(epsecially here), but if you do, just sent me a message.
cantabile-reaper Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
lol It's okay. I'm 16, too. Sure, this is no Depression. Not quite yet.
Drak-Arts Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Professional Digital Artist
Agreed in that the situation here isn't nearly as bad as people make it out to be. It does indeed have it's negative impacts, but ultimately, it's really not that much more problematic than it has been it years prior. The trouble is more in finding a job rather than maintaining it, which really just comes down to good timing.
kobbie3 Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Professional Interface Designer
This may or may not be very helpful, but many video game companies are opening up satellites across Europe. Sweden, England, and Spain are three of the biggest places getting new companies.
You should try looking at, you can find a lot of companies that would hire you without moving the the USA. A lot of companies will even help fund your move. So, don't feel like your dream is impossible or requires extreme life changes to reach. If you are a little clever, you can find a solution that supports all your desires in life.
Rarrum Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
At the school I went to (specializes in game development, has a programming degree and an art degree, both very intense), probably a majority of people attended on student loans. Most didn't make it through, after realizing the work involved. While I personally hate the idea of being in debt, sometimes a loan is a necessary evil. If you're going to a school for something like that, expect that school work to basically become your life for several years. It's very very time intensive. The game industry can be a rough place too. While it does vary from place to place, near crunch times work will basically become life for (usually) a short while. You don't always get to work on what you want to work on. On occasion you may even be stuck working on something for a project that you dislike but really needs done. Things you love and maybe have already put a lot of work into might be cut from a project due to time constraints. That all said, I wouldn't go anywhere else, for it is my calling.

I moved halfway across the country for it all, and stayed here after school to work. That's nowhere near as bad as moving to the other side of the world though. It's not like you necessarily "leave everything behind"; you can still visit. But you're right, in that it would be a huge shock/change of lifestyle. At the end of the day, you have to decide whether the losses are worth the gains.
Brendavid Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Student Digital Artist
Best of luck to yah! :)
and please never stop doing art along the way :dummy:
Karfunkelstone Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Ein Glück kann ich in Deutsch schreiben. ^^ So eine schwierige Frage würde ich mir in Englisch nicht zutrauen zu beantworten.

Es ist echt hart, sich zwischen seinem alten Leben, den Freunden und seiner Finaziellen Zukunft entscheiden zu müssen.
Ich kann aus eigener Errahrung nur sagen, dass es sehr wichtig ist, eine Ausbildung, bzw. etwas zu haben, dass einem einen sicheren Stand im Leben bietet.
Denn man weiß nie was kommt.
Von daher wäre diese staatlich unterstütze Ausbildung nicht schlecht.
Es bedeutet zwar in gewisser Weise Abhängigkeit... aber eben auch eine gewisse Sicherheit.

Das mit Amerika klingt natürlich auch sehr geil! Wenn ich die Möglichkeit hätte, ich würde wohl jede Gelegenheit nutzen um andere Länder zu sehen und meine Möglichkeiten dort nutzen.
Da ist eben die Frage, was dir wichtiger ist. Deine Freunde hier, oder die weite Welt. ^^

Wenn ich deinen Bericht richt verstanden habe, bist du momentan ziemlich ausgelaugt von deiner Arbeit. Es macht dir zwar Spaß und du kannst deinen Tag selbst einteilen, aber du musst eben immer darauf achten, dass es für's Leben reicht.

Wenn du meine Meinung hören willst, dann würde ich das mit der Universität machen, und sobald du deinen Abschluss hast, kannst du dich ja wieder selbstsändig machen und immer noch ins Ausland oder woaders hin.

Aber letztendlich musst du deinem Herzen folgen, so blöd das auch klingt.
Und wenn du dir unsicher bist, dann mach es ganz einfach.
Nimm einen Würfel und gibt den drei Entschidungen jewals zahlen und würfel es auch.
Spätestens dann wirst du spüren, ob du mit dem Wurf einverstanden bist oder nicht. ^^

Ich wünsche dir auf jeden Fall viel Glück und dass du die wrichtige Wahl triffst!
Malowanczyk Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010
You should watch Randy Pausch last lecture ([link]). Maybe it can give some help about achieving what you want. Though he speaks of childhood dreams, it can still be related to dreams in general. The only problem is that it takes over one hour to see, but it's still a great lecture
BeiHuiNing Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Student Traditional Artist
I would go with the game industry because it seems like if that doesn't work out for some reason, you could go back to another option easily. They all sound like great options though and I'm only 15 so don't listen to me. :)
AnuOjat Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
I would suggest not turning Art which you so much seem to love into a life support. Art should about expression, freedom of that expression and ect. Do what you want but if you make your life constant state of survival youll regret it in the end... :S
Mewball Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Maybe you should try to talk to :icontrenchmaker:
Mewball Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
woops i accidentally pressed add ^^; i meant to say maybe you should ask her, because she's also a freelance artist in Germany. you maybe could get some tips if that's the path you choose
Antigone-Bookeater Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010
Try to imagine each possibility as if it was present, and ask yourself what you regret. Regrets might be the worst thing in life. Whatever you choose, try not to have regrets afterwards.
Choosing is always hard. There's the moment before you choose, when all the possibilities are equal, and the moment after, when you know your life will never be the same, and you know you've crossed a borderline. And you let the other possibilities behind you.
I can only guess how you feel, and I know there are very few people who could really help you now, so all I can do is wish you luck, and confidence once you've chosen.
SoulWindDragon Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
You have to believe in yourself, have no doubt, and don't look back.
Well if you choose to make your dreams come true you will be happy. But if you choose to reach big goals... it's always unknown destiny. it's like a lottery... reaching your dreams would make you very happy for your entire life... i understand how you feel... i'm not even 17 yet but i have thought about everything already and i have chosen my dream. but it's up to you to decide what you want from your life.
I always loved your art hun... :heart:

Jackie-M-Illustrator Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Professional Digital Artist
There is only ever one thing you need to remember: if you try hard enough, you can achieve whatever goals you put yourself to. Life wants you to succeed, but she's going to make it hard and challenge you along the way to make sure you deserve it.

I think you should read "The Alchemist" by Paulo Coelho, it really spoke to me.
Czarine-the-Restless Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'm having the same feelings here, yet I'm not even close to having to make a decision yet. Every day I work hard to improve but I don't see my future as brightly as I did before... After my education, what will become of me. Will I start my own lil company and be independant but have a crappy income, will I eventually get hired in the art department of a company that provides home entertainment (preferably games or animated movies) after a long traject of being poor after my education (an average of 12 years), or will I not even be accepted at the education of my dreams and what will be the alternative? For me, there is no alternative...

So yeah... Don't ask me why, but I'm worried. :( I hope you'll make the right choice though, and get to live up to your dreams and make them come true. :) You deserve it.
AguaRush11 Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
your art is beautiful, and you are brave for doing what you love. I wish you blessing where ever you go and what ever you chose to do. my thoughts and prayers are with you :) :hug:
CruzRobin Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010
Jetzt habe ich ein schlechtes Gewissen wegen meiner letzten Note. x__X
Du bist ein starker, kreativer Mensch - und es wäre unmenschlich, wenn solch eine Entscheidung einfach zu fällen wäre. Es ist zwar eine unkonventionelle Methode, aber in solchen Fällen mache ich einen Spaziergang, der nur die Entscheidung zum Thema hat.
Aber ich denke, dass du auf dem richtigen Weg bist, imo ist es eine hervorragende Hilfe die Pros und Contras auszuwerten und einfach überall dein Glück zu versuchen.
Ich persönlich sehne mich auch nach einem Allheilmittel, dass es einem ermöglicht glücklich zu leben ohne die Freiheit ein zu büßen.
Ich wünsche dir wirklich sehr viel Erfolg.
Eastrider Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010
Do what ever you feel, but don't abandon your hobbies unless you actually found a substitute.
Qzurr Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2010  Professional Traditional Artist
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June 8, 2010