I made this drawing in response to the prompt ‘ethos’. It appeared on Creative Mornings!
Once again, the third quarter blends into the fourth, and my projects have been inching along chaotically. I’ve been behind on updates, so I will share the outputs I’ve hoarded these past few months in bits and pieces from now.
Here are some topics that have been on my mind these past few months.
US Midterm Elections
Participating in election campaigns is a natural extension to environmental advocacy in my opinion, since politics has become increasingly entwined with environmental action. It’s natural that politicians would disagree on what environmental actions the government should take, but in the US, climate change is politicized far beyond that.
The environmental groups I participate in all pivoted to ‘getting out the vote’ (GOTV) efforts to encourage climate-conscious voters to go to the polls this midterm. If you’ve been following the election news, you know it’s been an existential-for-democracy nail-biter, and women and young voters stepped up to the quest. We environmentalists are pretty relieved with the results.
So the lead-up was quite a frenzy for me, writing postcards, phone-banking, making media, and trying to freak out as productively as possible.
I took a much-needed vacation to Scotland and Ireland to visit friends.
I returned refreshed and with plenty of sketches and vacation photographs to make art from. I’m excited to dust off the inks! My library of landscape references was running low.
Organizing my research
For a while now, my research and other notes have been exploding out of my organization systems. I mainly relied on indexes (BuJo style) at the beginning of my notebooks and the occasional spreadsheet to track the writing I produced.
Recently, I’ve gotten on the ‘second brain’ train. (If you haven’t heard, the book Building a Second Brain by Tiago Forte has been taking nerd circles by storm. It’s a book about note-taking, and it was very relevant to my situation.)
I made an organization system in an environment called Obsidian. The main advantage of Obsidian is it enables you to link notes together and manages the links when you move or rename files. There’s other handy functionality from plug-ins and add-ons.
So far, I’ve added about 800 notes about various topics in the last few months, and organized them into a loose structure. I think I’ve finally found a system that can keep up with the bouncing-jumping-skipping way that I work.
I think of it as an extension of my notebook index. I effectively made a map to my notes across all notebooks, hard drives, and cloud accounts, so I can cross-reference them.
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So that’s what being going on under the surface! As for the actual projects, I will summarize briefly and post more details soon.
- Research quest: My advocacy goal was to have an op ed accepted (continuing to build on the foundation of comments and letters to the editor). I’ve gotten in the swing of writing and submitting them, with no luck so far. As for reading and blogging, I have some updates to share soon. [Update: Redondo Beach Climate Action]
- Novel: I’ve consolidated my manuscript, and there’s a chunk of editing to do. Somehow, every winter I get a burst of writing productivity [Update: the plan for December]. I’m hoping the pattern will hold in the months ahead! I have some concept art to share as well.
- Art: I’ve been working in digital illustration mostly! Pictures (and a bit of video) coming soon! [Update: picture]
So, there it is. More of a trailer than an actual update, but I’m glad to be back to sharing some writing and art!