MarvelSuperHeroesandSidekicks

Supporting Character

MarvelSuperHeroesandSidekicks

Marvel Super Heroes and their Sidekicks.

I will admit that I am uninteresting to most people.  I am “mostly harmless” and “slightly above average” in most regards.  Certainly nothing that really stands out when you look at me or even talk to me.  I am a Supporting Character and that is what we do.  We downplay ourselves in favor of the stronger character, with the more interesting story.  I am James Bond’s “Q” or Batman’s Robin… well maybe not quite Robin.  One of the many Robin’s does get his own identity after a while, as Nightwing. I am still less interesting than the people I surround myself with.

Right now, I am a Supporting Character.  I support people that pass some sort of instinctual criteria that I have.  I look for the lions in the making.  People who are fighting for their dreams and goals.  The people who keep getting back up after getting knocked down, no matter how beat up they may be.

“Fall seven times, stand up eight.” Your Supporting Character will be there to help you every time.  We will brush you off, put bandages on your wounds and help you find a way to get back on the path.  That is what we do.  We are quite happy doing it to.  It is our way to touch greatness or be a part of something bigger and better than ourselves.

I would not mind being like Robin, getting my own identity after a while. I do have my own story and dreams.  They are not as dramatic as Batman’s, but they still exist.  I have been supporting the lions for quite a while, I might be ready to join them in the fight for my dreams.

It has taken a while for me to reach the point where I want to be a Main Character.  There is a crazy amount of courage required to take the steps.  You have to trust in yourself and know your limits.  You have to have your own cast of Supporting Characters.  You have to trust that your Support System will let you bounce back if you do fail.  So much courage is needed, so much trust.

I know what I am capable of as a Support Character.  I do not know if that translates well to being a Main Character.  I can only hope it is and have the courage to take that leap.  Like many of those that I have supported.

Fight On!

For some reason Chobits popped into my head on my way home.

Chobits is an anime and manga about a robotic girl who has lost her memory.  She is picked up by an introverted guy taken home and repaired.  It is actually a good show.  Mostly about self discovery than anything weird or creepy.  I enjoyed it.

There is an episode where the robot girl, Chi, helps her new owner focus on his work by cheering him on.  She punches up into the air and shouts “Fight-O!” every time the guy gets tired or distracted.

Typing this up I remembered why this came into my head.

FightOn!

You can do it!  …I think my people are getting a bit better.

I have a friend who is working his butt off to reach his goals.  I am honored to know him.  I am not at the stage where I am willing to put everything on the line for a dream (it’s also not how I generally work.)  I want to support him and everyone who is doing everything they can to make their dreams come true.

This post is for everyone who is working their buns off to reach their goals.

Fight On!

You can do it!

We support you!

freedom

Freedom

Today was the kind of day that made me realize that most of the things that make a day difficult is self induced.  I do it to myself.

freedom

Flying on wings unfettered, metaphorically speaking.

Today was the kind of day that made me want to throw off all my chains and be free, spread my wings and just fly away.  I am not sure if or when it will happen, but the thought is there.

Thankfully I have outlets that let me “be free.”  I can draw my thoughts, desires, feelings and dreams.  I can make my feelings into an image and share the feeling with others.

Images have this really neat ability to transcend language and race barriers.

I share my longing for freedom from my self imposed chains with everyone.

Enjoy.

Sometimes I Dream of … Zombies

This morning I dreamt of zombies.

I have had zombie dreams before.  In those I was on the survivor end.  I would wake up very tired.  It is hard work surviving a Zombie Apocalypse.

Today’s was a bit different, in that it was a 3rd person point of view and ‘we’ were the zombies.

A bunch of people are heading out of the airport.  A father with two kids, one about 12 the other about 5, is having trouble juggling a backpack, duffel bag and the children.  We swing into position a few feet behind the fathers head.

“Dad, I want a piggy back!” says the older child.

“I can’t carry you and your brother.  You need to walk.”  The older child promptly falls on the floor and pouts. “NO!”

The father stops in sight of the doors to the parking garage.  Puts the duffel bag and younger child down.  He turns and gestures the older child to hop on his back, over the rather flat backpack.  “Get, on.  We can’t miss the bus.”

The father grabs the duffel bag and the hand of the younger child and moves out the door to the parking garage.

The father and children are now in different cloths rushing to the back of a department store.  The father keeps looking behind him.  As they near the storage and loading dock area of the store we start to see bodies with grey military issue blankets covering them.  The father picks up the younger child and grabs the older ones hand.   They step over and around the blanketed bodies.  The older child touches one of the blankets, takes a few steps and falls down.  The father lets his hand go and keeps walking.

As he passes through the door way leading to the darkened back rooms a girl in her 20’s hands him a blanket.  Not thinking he brushes it away, takes a few steps and falls to the floor.

As we pan over the blankets and bodies we overhear a conversation between to muffled voices.

“So you read that IM to?”

“Yeah. Who would have thought that it could actually happen”

“Not me. This is so lame.”

We come back into focus over the father, who is getting up.  He looks very disheveled, but other than that looks “healthy.”  He stumbles over to the older child’s body on the floor.  Shakes him and asks “Did you read it?” He gasps for air. “DID YOU READ IT?!”

“No.”  The older son replies, wiping his eyes with the back of his hand.

“Liar.  You would be outside with your brother if you hadn’t.”  He turns away in disgust and looks at the others that are milling in the area.

“Why doesn’t anyone look at us!”  We here a shrill voice shout.  “They are not looking!”

We move from behind the father to stand by a girl in her mid 20’s.  She has long wavy brown hair and is wearing a light top and jeans, also looking disheveled. “They will not look at me! Why wouldn’t they look at me?”

We shift views to see twenty to thirty disheveled looking individuals moving to intercept customers walking through the store.  The disheveled people jump in the paths of the customers, shout at them, try to trip them and grab them.  The customers show little to no response.  The most noticeable is that one customer changes course to look at a product instead of heading towards the registers and another swerves around the person blocking his path.

As we watch we see the girl has changed her cloths and is wearing a skirt.  As she walks around the main aisles something dark slides down her legs, like he pants are falling off.  A voice shouts “That is a shirt, moron!”  The girl looks up, smiles, steps out of the shirt, and puts it on.  Then she laughs and runs into a side aisle.

A group of disheveled people gather together and slowly but steadily a buzz of voices can be heard.  They consolidate into a chant “We are the Dead.  We are the Dead…” 

The disheveled, self proclaimed dead line up down the aisles, chanting.  They slowing move out into the main aisles trying to gain attention.

“We are the Dead.  We are the Dead. We are the Dead…”

A click from the overhead pager system can be heard…

… And I woke up.

That was my crazy zombie dream.  I wonder what happens next.

A Problem with Vision

VisonI have 20/20 eyesight.  This post is not about that kind of vision.  That is a small ‘v’ type problem.  I am talking about Vision.  The thing designers, PM’s, Managers and Directors have when working on a project.  It is also known as a goal if you are not a visual person.

This past month has been busy, so busy that I have not had time to think about a post.  I have a consulting client and and actual web development client.  In addition one of my previous clients moved his site to WordPress (you are welcome for the recommendation.) I also am rebuilding my spouses website since he is changing focus.  That is quite a bit on top of a full time job.

What does that have to do with Vision?

I have a Vision…  Not a dream, those are less concrete and not always based in reality (they are fun sometimes, I have awesome dreams.)

These Visions are of completed projects for myself, clients and friends.  Some of the Visions include a “how to” guide and others do not.  If I think about things enough I can figure out the steps, best methods and problems I will run into. Things that are good to know and will speed along a project. Some of the Visions are so clear and complete I can See and Hear them, like they are completed and working.  It is really incredible.

NeedAGuideThe problem is with the Visions that some are BIG and do not come with “how to” guides.  I am not experienced enough in some areas to know exactly what steps to take to get to the end of the project.  Some times I cannot See where to separate a section of a project into smaller steps or phases. I have had this problem in previous projects and had to abandon them for various reasons (usually time.)

Projects where I have little or no Vision do not always go well.  They have a tendency to get put on the back burner while I wait for the Vision to clarify itself or just get dropped all together.  Others just end up mediocre and I do not learn anything.  I despise those kinds of projects.  They are boring and almost a waste of time.

Projects that have a clear Vision with little guidance are hard to work on, but usually rewarding (because I learn something.)  They do not always turn out as planned, that can be good or bad.  I always do the best I can to get the desired result.  Often I run into time constraints and have to rush things along because I spent to much time researching.

There is a pretty easy solution the problems with unclear Visions.

Learn!

The internet is full of information, guides and tutorials to show one how to do things.  Always do research.  Someone out there has probably documented their journey through a similar problem and you CAN use it help you succeed.  It may not be the fastest solution but it is going to be the best.  You will have this knowledge and experience to use on future projects.  Your Visions will come to fruition and the clients will be happy (we can hope.)

Do not let your lack of experience make you fail.  I am not going to!

Getting it Together

The beginning of this month has been crazy.

I quit my internship.  It was not taking me where I wanted to go.  They also changed direction and I was not going to be able to do what I spent 3 years in university and many thousands of dollars and hours to do.  I started out as a web developer for their WordPress pages but quickly let myself get sidetracked with the graphic design component of the work.  I left because I was offered a SUPER AMAZING pro-bono gig for a non-profit. 

There are some things I need to do to take full advantage of the opportunity.  Get a business license is one of the first things I need to do.  Another is set up a formal meeting with them and find out exactly what they need and figure out how to provide it.  I have many, many ideas that will help them grow and prosper, but what I can do depends on what they want. 

A big part of the project gathering the basic information on Who, What, When, Where and How.

  • Who is going to do the blog, the FB, YouTube and Twitter and when?
  • What constitutes acceptable content? 
  • What cool stuff can we offer the variety of interested parties? 
  • Who are our stakeholders?
  • What do our stakeholders expect?
  • How do we give the stakeholders what they need and expect
  • When do the stakeholders expect the product?
  • Can we get it to them in a timely manner?
  • Where can information and content be found?
  • How do we market ourselves better?

There are so many other questions to ask, but those will get us started.

Image

Thank you yourownawesome.org for the image. It is AWESOME!

I learned a lot at my internship.  Some of the questions I will ask came from that.  It was a great experience but in the end I was not going to go in the direction I wanted to go. It was time for me to move on and use my skills and talents in another area.

I actually waited a bit to long to make this choice.  By the time I had, I was struggling to complete what little work I was given.  I dreaded going to “work” and events.  Once the direction changed and more staff was “hired” (more interns,) I realized that I did not have to stay around.  It was not in my best interest to stay around.  The dis-satisfaction was causing problems elsewhere and I needed to move on.  It was not an easy choice.  I am very loyal by nature.  There are times when it is better for everyone to just move on.  Sometimes it just takes time to realize it, or, as in my case, another opportunity to knock and be really awesome.

I am going to be working really hard to make my part successful and I am going to blog about the process.  I cannot wait to share my new work with everyone out there.  I will as soon as the ink dries on the plans.  Many of you that follow my blog are going to be interested in the organization and I hope that you will be able to offer me input to make things awesome.   

Maybe, just maybe, we will inspire others to take up the cause.  Or maybe someone who is starting a web based non-profit will succeed and make their dreams a reality based off the information I have shared.

Image

 

Weird Dreams

It is amazing how our subconscious tells us that something is wrong or bothering us.  Lately I have been having story arc of amazingly active and high pressure dreams.  If I was not an artist or interested in marketing (lots of psychology there) I would probably be annoyed at how much energy my dream self has be burning through.

I find dreams interesting.  The can inspire an artist to paint something truly personal and deep or a writer to create a new world. They also let us know when things are bothering us, things that we try to suppress the rest of the day.

I love my dreams and I really want to share this one with everyone as an example of a dream that has a purpose.

Image

Dali had one of his worst migraines while painting this. It is really small too, 9.5in x 13 in. If you like Dali you should check out his short animation he did with Walt Disney entitle Destino ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Destino )

My dream starts in the basement of a three story house.  I am cleaning and babysitting a seven or 8 year old girl. At some point I notice that there are some military looking people “casing” the house.  One of them enters the house on the main level, while the other tries to sneak around the back to one of the open basement windows.  Since I noticed them, wait for the guy using the window to get inside the house.  I then pick up the girl and toss her outside and lock the door (for some reason this door locks people in.)  The guy on the main floor notices and starts yelling and running down a set of outside stairs to reach us.

The girl is whining and complaining, basically throwing a tantrum.  I pick her up again and run into the back yard.  I have come to a bit of a ledge about 4 ft high and toss the girl up then scramble up a near by ladder.  I can hear that the two military guys leaving the house to follow.  They probably called backup or something.  I grab the girls hand and start running. She is still whining.

A foot chase ensues.  The military guys called backup and now we are being chased by four or five guys.  The girl has stopped whining and resisting, but we are still running, climbing and jumping.  I wake up after what seems like hours of parkour like activity I wake up.

It does not take a genius to figure out that this dream is about avoiding something (represented by the military guys) and protect something (whining girl).  In my case it would be avoiding my preconceptions of what a web design job will be like.  At the same time I want to protect my “innocence” from the dangers of the world.  Basically I have been avoiding the job search because I am afraid of what might happen (or not happen.)

 

I am not unique in my worry about a new job, and certainly not the first to avoid it.  At least I got a cool dream out of it!

Night all!

Pleasant Dreams 😉