Welcoming 2018 – Plans, ideas, and a little bit of TMI

Hello everyone!

I guess it’s appropriate to say Happy New Year! Even though we’re already 4 days into the year.

Last year was not a kind one to me, I was very hesitant to share this with you but I think it’s time to share a little bit about what happened to me and my work.

As you can see, my gallery was very poor last year, and it has to do with a lot of things, many of them personal and others that were out of my control. I moved last year back in April, and this made my schedule go wack, 2 months without work, moving, packing, unpacking, organizing, buying things that were missing for new place, painting the house and more.. it took a toll on me as I was the only between me and my boyfriend that had to slip in 2 and do all the work, mainly because he has to work, and a day without work was a full day without pay and we needed the money, I ended up questioning a lot of things in my life as this move was sudden and unplanned, my last landlord never repaired leaks on the ceiling or even repaired any of the things that we complained about while staying at that house, due to the leaks, the ceiling in my workroom took a lot of damage and the drywall was already starting to fall, so we constantly complained while he did nothing and still collected the rent, one day we just flat out told him that if he didn’t fix everything asap, that we would withhold the rent, he was just the 3rd person between us and the owner, we had the feeling that he was stiffing both us, because a few days later he came back and said that to be able to repair the ceiling, we would need to move out, he basically evicted us but he didn’t do it in a legal way, he broke the contract we had, but at that point we were fed up and tired of all the bullshit, so I found a new house within a month, and once we found it, I had to start packing.

Long story short, the tenants that left the new place, left the house completely filthy and painted the walls without the owner’s consent. We talked to the owner and she was very accessible, she let us repaint the whole place to our liking, she would pay for the paint, while we did the work in exchange for 2 weeks without paying the rent while we got it ready, so this was me, scrambling to get people to paint the house, schedule the moving truck, buy moving boxes and ended up getting very depressed as does all moving experiences has left me in the past.

Once the house was set up and we were settled in, I wanted to start working again, but my depression didn’t leave, in fact, it got worse, to the point where I was in a very bad mental state, I’m ashamed to admit this… but I was having suicidal thoughts…

I had to get professional help, as my life was falling apart inside my head, I felt a lot of things were wrong in my life and felt like I had lost power over it, this as you can see, affected everything, including my work, I would usually go to my workshop and just sit there, looking at all the pending work I had and just thinking “I haven’t finished this, it’s overdue, I need to finish this” but my spirit was broken, so this ended in me just feeling worse because I felt like I was losing face to my clients who have been more than patient at that time, I was terrified of the possibility of my clients thinking that I was being unprofessional, I’ve always taken pride in my work, and now this was happening to me, this also caused me extreme anxiety, especially when I would get an email from my clients asking for updates, it was a vicious circle that I needed to get out of.

After I started getting these dark thoughts, I sought professional help, and after several months of constant therapy, I was finally able to take control and I’m currently in a much better state of mind than I was at the beginning of last year. I have reached out to some of my clients and explained why their figures were being delayed, they have been more than understanding and I greatly appreciate it, having mental health issues is detrimental and crippling, so their patience means the world to me.

Back in October, I had a visit from 2 of my best friends in this hobby, Sam from ImHisEternalAngel and Seraph from Gareki Phoenix, they came to stay at my place for a good 2 -3 weeks and we talked and shared a lot of what had happened to us, it was cathartic, we all had the same mental health situation on different levels, I felt identified, knowing that I wasn’t the only one experiencing this, and that I should not be ashamed of what happened to my mental health, as it’s not an isolated situation. This experience also brought back my inspiration and spark to finally put in turbo on my kit building, it was amazing seeing my friends in the flesh for the first time and work together on kits, it reminded me of the good old days when the e2046 forums were alive, seeing everybody’s work was so inspiring to me, I had found what I lost, that old love I had for resin.

Ever since our time together, I’ve been working around the clock on all my past due figures and commissions, I’ve managed to find my passion again and my work is giving me that satisfactory feeling I use to get. I still get some anxiety when clients ask about updates, and I’ve been being sincere with them on the reasons why, but I have more confidence and I know I will finish all my past due work faster, so if you’re one of my clients reading, I implore you to please don’t judge me too harshly,  I know I’ve let you down on delivery times, but I’m back on the train and I will be sure to provide you with the best quality I offer in my work.

I do have some commissions this year, but I purposely chose to accept very few, because I’ve been working only on commissions for the past 5 years and I haven’t touched a single kit in my own personal collection, after getting my “groove” back, I realized, I wanted to work on my kits, but I also wanted to start growing my channel on youtube as I was also getting a lot of comments like “when are you going to make a new video?” “we haven’t seen anything new from you” “it’s been months since you uploaded anything”… I read all of them and I feel frustrated because I really do want to make new videos, but my priority has always been with the thing that pays the bills, so I’ll be switching this sometimes year, I want to start to dedicate my time to Youtube and quitting commissions for what I feel will be some years, I might come back, once I feel satisfied with my work for own personal figures in my collection.

So my plans are to finish all my past due commissions from last year and advance on the ones I have this year, which aren’t many, and I will start to make new videos, I want to  make new updated tutorials on things that I have already uploaded years ago, kind of like and updated version of the original video, I also have a lot of projects in mind for figure modification of character I’ve always wanted to make and film the whole process, I want to make videos that I like and that I feel will be interesting, funny and educational.

In between my ideas for videos, I was thinking of making a monthly theme, for example, a month dedicated to making/painting “fairies”, another month’s theme could be a “villains theme” and a “goddess” theme, I have a very large collection of assorted figures apart from Sailor Moon, and I want to start painting my kits and doing themes like this to enjoy painting them while people enjoy watching me make them.

I cannot promise when this will take effect, as I want to first attend all of my clients first, after that, this is going to be my plan, become a full time youtuber, doing what I love, for me, I think I deserve it at this point 🙂

If you’ve read all the way to end, I really appreciate your interest in me and my work. You have no idea how much all of your support means to me.

I know this was a bit too much TMI, I hope you won’t judge me too much and I do hope you haven’t lost faith in me or think that I’m running away with your hard earned money if you’re a client, it’s the last thing I would ever do, I respect my clients too much, I take pride in my work and I have a reputation that I would never wish tarnish, I would lose everything I worked hard to achieve professionally over the years.

With all my love and appreciation,
Leona.

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