End

What do you do when you face the end? When everything you've fought for lies on the edge of a knife, and if you stray but a little, it will all come crumbling down.

I've fought hard in my life to make something great. I have fought for years and years in my quest to defy the status quo and seek to make something better. As the Overwatch trailer put it, "Never accept the world as it appears to be. Dare to see it for what it could be."

This rings true for me. Totally.

The way that people make money and the way that people organize themselves into social structures in the workplace can and should be so, so much better. And whenever I try to accept it for the way that it is today, it kills a little piece inside of me.

The world can and should be better. I'm going to make a company that rises above mediocrity and makes the world a better place. Even if it's the last god damn thing I do.

B

20/20

20-mile marching. I've written and talked about this a lot, but I think it's important. Like super important.

The beautiful thing about 20-mile marching is that it just works. It works like a goddamn precise clock that never dies. It's incredible. I've long been a fan of the concept, but I really live and breathe it now. The best part is that I'm not overworking myself anymore and yet I'm still accomplishing a lot.

Behind the Cinematic was built on the premise of 20-mile marching. I consistently add to it and improve it, but I don't kill myself for it. And it just keeps growing, getting better, and pushes me to be my best. There's really no downside to 20-mile marching. There may be a slight short term loss, but you surpass other people in the long run. And it doesn't even take that long to do more than people who work all the time. Because when you're well-rested and have all your wits about you, you can very easily do better than the people who are running on fumes.

And, of course, I made a video about it. So, even if you don't read Great by Choice, you should watch this video. And when you're done, read about Amundsen and Scott. And then read this for more information. Haha, do whatever you want. :)

Bailey

Mediocrity is My Bane

I talk about quality a lot, so I made a video with a few of my thoughts on mediocrity and striving for excellence. It actually saddens me that more people don't pursue excellence with every fiber in their being. Luckily, however, there are some people out there making some beautiful stuff. I like those people. My world revolves around those people.

-Bailey

2 Years Old

Well, Forma Pictures is 2! That's pretty wild, if you ask me. These past 2 years have been somethin' else, and I have absolutely no regrets about it.

Deciding to up and quit my well-paying job was definitely the best decision I ever made. The reason for this is that I was able to go and do things I really cared about. Stuff that I believe in. If you're debating a similar set of choices, I urge you to do the thing that will lead you to more joy. Do that which will lead to a great story, even if it ends in embarrassment. Sure, the road may be harder, but it's worth it. At least it has been for me.

This past year was a lot of fun. I worked on a few commercials, a game, launched a journalistic website, started a weekly series of narrated videos, and lots of other designs, edits, and articles. It's been busy.

I have no idea what this next year is going to be like, but I'm not really phased by so much uncertainty anymore. I'm used to it at this point. It's fun!

Anyhoo, I'll leave ya with the project I started this year that is nearest and dearest to my heart. I fuckin love working on it:

Bailey

New Horizons

You know, every now and then, a whole bunch of sweet things happen in sequence. It isn't often that I feel overwhelmed by one piece of great news after another, but that's exactly what happened this week.

The life of a freelance artist can be difficult. That's not to say that I don't experience a great deal of happiness, because I do. But when there are so many unknowns, things can get a bit tricky.

But this week was different. A few buds on the tree I've been growing have begun to blossom. The site I run, Behind the Cinematic, is beginning to take off. It's early days yet, but it's positively brimming with potential. I can feel it.

Next week I'll begin interviewing artists in the industry who work on game cinematics. The interviews will be made available for people to read on the site. And let me tell you...I am extremely excited to be doing this. After almost six months of planning, it's finally happening!

And...there was some more good news this week. All speculative stuff, but opportunities are exciting. The future is bright. It's good!

Bailey

Video Essays

Back in January I decided to start creating weekly tutorials. Mostly this meant walking through a process inside a program. However, I quickly realized that I greatly prefer to talk about art and business philosophies. I've spent countless hours thinking about that kind of stuff, and I wanted to share my thoughts in video form. So, I started creating video essays in addition to the standard tutorials.

While they've been more engaging for me to produce, the essays require a larger time investment. Specifically, I have to write them and tell a story of sorts. It's been fun, and difficult...still not very good at it yet. But practice, baby!

Your bud,

Bailey

The 20-Mile March

I've talked a lot of talk about 20-Mile Marching over the years, but I finally created an actual video about it. Check it out!

About a year ago I wrote an article about 20-Mile Marching. It's got the elements that are in the video, with some more details on the matter:

Lastly, if ya like posters, there's a poster that you can buy and hang on your wall:

Work smart and rest well!

Bailey

Numbers

Achievement is the direct result of diligence. And diligence is a matter of consistent effort over a period of time. I've found that sustained effort is often made more difficult because it can be hard to see the big picture when I'm down in the details.

For instance, last summer during one of my periods of drumming up business, I had to contact a lot of people. A lot. Now, I could have just contacted a whole bunch of people and hoped that it would work out before I got too tired of reaching out. But that can be dangerous, at least for me, because I can over estimate how much work I've put in at any given moment.

Instead I kept careful track of the number of people I contacted. And at the beginning I reminded myself that only about 1 percent of contacts will result in a working gig. What this did was it set up the right expectations. So, when I got to day 30, and there still wasn't any bites, I could rest easy knowing that I still hadn't played the odds sufficiently.

All this is a long way to say that setting proper expectations, followed by disciplined action, results in better returns (I eventually got a client, but it took many weeks).

So, these days I track almost everything I do with a list of numbers. It's reassuring and helps me to see the incremental progress toward my goals. I have a number for how many tutorials I've made, how many cinematic articles I've written, and of course how many potential clients I've reached out to. I even have one for the number of blog entries I've written for this blog.

This was blog entry #79.

Bailey

Working Towards an Avalanche

Despite having recently created a video essay about time and how it helps us, I couldn't help but feel a little helpless this past week. Why does everything have to take so much damn time?

I feel lucky to be working on a couple pretty sweet projects, but it's no surprise that they're all huge time investments. Anything worth doing is hard, right? Still, it's aggravating at times.

The principle point of tension is just how damn difficult it is to get the snowball moving. All four of my projects are piddly little snowballs that haven't picked up much steam. I just hope that they can start to speed down the mountain before it's too late.

With all of that said, my love for art can never be squelched. No matter how much shit I've been through, my passion has never died down. In fact, it burns stronger and more fiercely than ever. Art truly is the single greatest source of joy in my life, second only to the happiness I get from being with my family. I feel lucky to have that energy behind me. It's a weird thing, if you think about it. Or maybe it's not. I don't know.

Bailey

Time Is Our Ally

Time is a resource that is the same for all of us. We all experience the same number of hours in a day. And as such, the least productive and the most productive people have the same amount of time to get things done. So why is there so much disparity in how efficient people are?

I've often felt constrained by time. And over the years I have learned to work with it to be a more efficient person.  But I recently had an epiphany that has helped me to see time in a different light. Have a listen to what I think here:

Bailey