31 January 2008

99.9% Mobile Blogging

Hello hello! This is going to be my first blog entry through my mobile phone. I figured instead of waiting till I got back, I might as welll practice my thumb typing and get my Day 10 entry done! There's a lot on my plate again and it kind of feels like the food is there but I don't have any cutlery so I don't know if I should dive in or if I should get everything sorted out first. Honestly, everything is happening all at the same time! I was talking with one of my band mates last night and it hit me that today is the last day of January! Wow! A month has already passed! When i quickly look back, I feel like time has just flown by and I only have 11 more months till even 2008 is over... But wheb I really look back properly, a heck of a lot has happened! I won't go through the whole list here but let's just say its been a month of madness... But in a good way :).

So how are things with all my readers. I think a lot more people have visited my blog after watching my YouTube clip. I've been getting a lot of very encouraging emails and messages from people all over appreciating my stand-up comedy! Just when I thought it couldn't get any busier...

I could use one day of peace and quiet but I know it's not going to happen in the near future... But that's ok. Like I said before, I'd much rather burn out than fade away and right now, as long as I play my cards right and manage myself properly, I'll be able to deal with everything. The real challenge is not in dealing with myself, it's when I have to deal with others... Don't take this as me saying other people aren't good enough, but when other people are involved, it ups the number of variables are involved in my life. Like I said in a previous post, it is these variables that are my biggest challenge! When they are out of my control, that means the chances of something unexpected happening are increased and when/if something unexpected happens, I have to be in tip-top condition and mental state to overcome the obstacle(s).

*yawn*I'm quite tired right now and sitting on the train just makes me even more drowsy to tell you the truth. Oddly, I may be feeling sleepy, but I'm still quitr charged up to work because I know my plate of to-do's won't finish itself. So it's really my conscience keeping me awake at this moment because if I cave now, not only will I find it difficult to sleep tonight, I'll also regret it later when I wake up a couple of hours later.

Yes, yes I know, today is a Day 10 entry but so far I haven't really talked about a Day 10 topic. Well then let's stick to my good ol' topic of faith in oneself. The more I strive and push myself, the more faith I have in me that tells me "you" can do it! The same goes for everyone! It's similar to synergy in that the more faith you have in yourself, the more you will push yourself towards excellence. I don't just want excellence, I want perfection and harmony. YIKES! I'm really falling asleep now so I better stop here or else I'll end up snoozing it out. :) Enjoy yourself! :)

PS. Apparently I can't upload my post via my mobile phone (maybe some javascript limitations?) so I had to copy/paste the stuff I typed on my phone to my PC and post this entry. So it's not 100% mobile blogging :\

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28 January 2008

I survived

It's like 2:15am on Monday morning and I'm still alive :) It's been a wild week as you all know from my previous entry but... I survived!

I finally got to touch my new TD-12K V-drums and there's a heck of a lot of stuff I need to learn and figure out. I'll be recording some of my band's drum tracks using that lovely piece of equipment but I still need to get it hooked up to my computer and stuff. Sigh, so much to do, never enough time :\. Anyways, these next few days will be a bit smoother, not calmer mind you, I will be catching up on all my Freelance work I've missed out this passed week so there's a lot of work pending. I think I'm going to try to get some done tonight before I sleep because I have an appointment in the early morning tomorrow. Yikes.

I'm actually mentally quite burnt out because there's so much happening right now, my comedy life, my web designer life, my band life, etc. I've not been doing my breathing exercises properly lately and I can feel the impact it has on me. I'm getting exhausted faster and losing focus quicker. I'll get back into my routine tonight. Heck, I don't even have the energy or focus to practice drums! It's been like a week if you exclude jamming with my band (twice :P)!

Speaking of my band, we finally installed new lights in th bandroom so at least now it feels more fun to play because the whole mood is improved. I'm no longer going deaf because I've got my headphone set-up all sorted out and well my accuracy to the click is getting better and better for our songs. I'm still struggling to work out some of my drum parts but we'll see, I should be fine.

Basically I just wanted to say I survived. By the way, my YouTube stand-up comedy clip has passed the 50,000 views mark! :D If you haven't checked it out, enjoy and have a good day:

21 January 2008

Longest meeting ever!

It's 11:55pm so I'm technically still on time for this Day 10 entry, who knows what time I'll finish writing this post. I'm so tired now! Yikes! I still have a tonne of work to do before I can even think of sleeping let alone taking a break! I decided to get myself into the work mood, I'd start by going through all of my to-do widgets one by one and the first one (for today) was this Day 10 entry. I hate being late for my Day 10 entries because I know if I mess this up, a big part of me gets all lazy and just procrastinates away all my other things I need to get done. To be honest, these last few days have been hectic for me with high levels of stress. I'm starting to feel the strain of too many moving parts in my life again.

It's been around 3 weeks into the new year and 3 weeks ago I would have never guessed how many things would have happened in a measly 3 weeks! When I said Bring It! I was serous but I guess reality also heard it and threw everything in my direction! Yikes! But you know what, my mind is still in fighter-mode because I'm ready, bring it on. It's all mental more than anything else, I feel tired because I agree with myself that I'm tired. I feel lazy because I agree that I'm feeling lazy. When I disagree with myself, I find this new energy that lets me keep going. It's when my mind slacks off and says "OK, you've worked hard, you can be lazy today" that's when I start feeling tired and lazy. I guess the hardest part of it all is trying to find the line that divides your body telling you you're tired and your mind telling you you're tired. I'm still figuring out the difference because when my mind's tired, my body gets tired, but when my body's tired, all the energy in my mind is no use because I can't push myself to move and then my mind gets tired automatically. It's a vicious cycle.

I believe I can fly and I've said it before, it's not that we cannot fly. It's just that we haven't figured out a way to fly and all the facts and knowledge we have tell us that we cannot. I keep reminding myself this whenever everything is telling me that what I want to achieve is impossible. There's so much information and knowledge out there that I cannot easily conclude that something cannot be done. When I tell people the schedule I have this week, many people tell me I'm crazy, others tell me it's no big deal. Personally, I'm not worried but I'm worried. Like when I think about it, it seems overwhelming but when I look at it, I think I've been through worse than this.

It's all mental.

On that note, today's Day 10 entry is about the mental part of our lives. My mother read a paragraph from a book she's reading and it said something along the lines that we can only go as far as we think we can. In many times, growth only happens through failure. In weight-lifting, our muscles get stimulated to repair and grow the most after we break through the reps where we're almost failing. It is the last 2 reps that rewards can be reaped from, the first 10 reps were simply preparing us for the last 2 reps where we can achieve the results we want.

Growth and success can be achieved only if you break past the phase where failure is almost inevitable. It is when you push a little bit further that you did last time. It's when you walk out of your comfort zone and tread into the scary, deadly territory. This is where I feel like I am right now. I can feel my mind crying for help and telling me to slow down. I can sense my body screaming that I'm in the brink of the yellow zone and on my way into the red zone. But I can hear my heart say I can handle it. And as long as I believe in myself, I can do it and I'm going to do it. I can't wait to go through this week and tell you all about it in no later than 10 days and I'm looking forward to my next 6 months entry because boy has a lot changed :). You see that smiley face? That's me being proud of what I've achieved after all this time and effort.

Speaking of time and effort, I've set up my TD-12 drumset but I have yet to actually play it!! AAAHHH!!! I don't have time to play and I think it'll be a whole week before I'll get the chance to do so!

Also, as for the title, I had the longest meeting ever today, it was divided into 2 parts, the first half was 4 hours, the next half was 3 hours. And now I'm off to work :).

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19 January 2008

I did 20 minutes of Chinese!

Woah! What a night! We did a Cantonese Stand-up Comedy show (first time ever in Hong Kong!) at Champs Bar in Charterhouse and boy it was awesome! It still hasn't registered in my head right now that it happened but woah! I loved every bit of it! You have no idea how nervous I was before the show, the pressure, the expectations from others as well as myself! Yikes!

The cool thing is I'm getting more and more comfortable playing with the audience now. I guess I get an edge because I can mess with people without worrying about getting my ass kicked because after all, we're at a comedy club right!? People were really friendly tonight, I mean they all really played along even thought some were shy. I knew there would be shy people so I tried to work it out with them, it was all good in the end really.

I have to say this is a proud and happy feeling right now. It's slowly sinking into my head that this happened tonight because like I said before, this is all a dream to me, now it's like a bonus of a dream! I'm just so excited that this whole thing is taking off like this! Tonight is a historical for all of us Chinese comedians because it's the first time something like this has ever happened in Hong Kong, but at the same time this is a milestone in my life as well! I mean, now I can officially say I've headlined both in English and Chinese! In many ways the pressure is so much more because you know people are totally expecting a certain level of quality from you and I mean to be honest, I know I'm not bad, but because this has all happened so fast, it hasn't sunk into me properly what level I'm really at. I mean let's compare this to my drumming. Now I'm not boasting because if you asked me to tell you what I need to improve on, I could go on and on and on, but after 2 and a half years of drumming, I've gained a certain amount of confidence in my skills that even when surrounded by others, I know at least I'm at a certain level. But with my comedy, I guess I just need time and experience and it'll sink in, but until then, it does me no good to doubt myself or anything so I just go with it and do my best. Hey like I said, this is all a dream, if I end up totally screwing up, I'll just pinch myself and wake up :).

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17 January 2008

I'd rather burn out than fade away

I read that somewhere and it overwhelmed me completely! I love that phrase and it's my motto (for) now! To be honest, I'm really mentally exhausted, I've been out and about all day long since the moment I woke up and now it's around 1am and I can finally allow myself to stop and relax. In fact, I don't want to relax, I want to sleep, but I'm so used to late nights now from work and stuff that 1am feels like telling myself to sleep at 8pm, you just psychologically can't do it. But I'm going to try today because I need to have a full, long day tomorrow.

I think my energy levels have been going down because I haven't been doing my breathing exercises properly lately because the building renovation crew is painting the outside walls, so I don't want to be filling my lungs with the fumes from their paint. I know, I know, I could easily go to a park and get some fresh air, but when I'm out and about, I'm always on the go! I never seem to have the chance to stop!

Wow, I'm really exhausted to the point I can't even get myself to do hand drum exercises tonight! I've been kind of slacking off with drum practice lately because of all this work I have ahead of me. I don't blame laziness, I really have been busy. I have a lot of stand-up comedy performances lined up and then nerves are slowly building up because everytime I perform I want to be better than my previous show and this creates a certain level of pressure within myself. It's good pressure though, don't get me wrong, because without this, I'd never improve and I have to keep striving for excellence. I'd rather burn out than fade away :)

But on a brighter note, my lovely TD-12K drumset has arrived!! Waaaaahhooooo!! Check it out, the boxes are huge!!
Seriously, they're humongous! When I got home, I looked at them in awe and thought "Wow, poor delivery guys!" But I'm not going to allow myself to unpack them until this Sunday because I know once I open the box, I can say goodbye to the next 4 hours from the moment I break the seal. Speaking of drumming and crazy work, today is going to mark the last day I can relax. From tomorrow onwards, I have so much stuff lined up for myself it's not funny! I have to prepare for the Friday Stand-up comedy show at Champs. Then I'm having a late-night jam session with my band which means 12am onwards... oh goodness. Then Friday's the big day. Saturday I've got back-to-back comedy shows of Chinese followed by English. Sunday will be the day I catch up on all the work I missed out on Friday/Saturday. Monday, I've got a long meeting with a client during the day, Tuesday will be my day of preparation for my gig in Macao. Wednesday I'm at Macao all day. Thursday I'm back in Hong Kong and opening for Paul Ogata at night. Friday is my MC performance. Saturday is finally my day of rest and relaxation..... Sunday my friend Ka Chun is probably going to come to pick up my old electronic drums and then we're back to Monday and well I don't want to look that far.

So like I said at the start of the year, bring it! And let me just add, I'd rather burn out than fade away. This is a lot lined up but I'm ready for it. Don't forget I cannot and will not neglect my freelance projects, too. So I need to keep myself in tip-top condition and energized to the max at all times and on that note, I think I'm going to go for a nice hot shower, get into bed and get some snooze. I'm honestly plain and simply exhausted. Help :\.

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13 January 2008

I'm exhausted (again) on a Saturday night

Woah, it's already 2:30am!? Technically it's Sunday already and I'm just exhausted! Today was a long day, I attended the Take Out Comedy Stand-up Workshop to help Jami Gong (the owner) out and also share my experiences and views regarding stand-up comedy. I then did a Chinese set to a small audience tonight but decided to take it easy for the English show and for the first time, I just watched and didn't perform. It's a totally different experience I must admit! Very relaxed and I could enjoy the show as an audience member :)

We then did the usual and hit Bhatti Bar afterwards where all the comedians hang out and people mingle. It was fun just chatting with people and stuff. I have to say, no ego involved, I am enjoying how people every now and then are recognizing me off the streets. Just today, as I entered the comedy club, I heard someone say "Hey, that's Vivek Mahbubani the comedian", I turned around, walked back out and said "Hey, did you just say my name?" and started talking to these 2 people, it was an awesome feeling and I'm glad people are enjoying my sense of humor :) People who know me, know that one thing that makes he a content person is seeing other people around me happy and what better way to do it than through stand-up comedy!?

There's a lot every morning I wake up and I'm thankful about, one of them is the opportunity I've had to do stand-up comedy and not just that, but to do it successfully here in Hong Kong! Every step I'm taking in my stand-up comedy career is already a bonus and a dream to me so I'm enjoying the whole ride! Just to let you know, I've never been to Macao in my life and I've been invited to go perform at the Venitian Hotel in Macao! Well I'm opening for Paul Ogata (killer comedian!) but OMFG I'm going to Macao!!! Wahoo!! Who knows what's next man!

So you see what I'm thankful for everyday? A lot of good stuff is happening and some might say "oh, you're such a lucky person." OK, I have to stop you there, I'm not a big believer in luck, yes it exists, but I'm not one of those people to say you get places through luck. No comedian is ever lucky, it's all hard, honest work. I'm not trying to boast here but more like let you know that you shouldn't be sitting there saying "oh he's so lucky he could go do this"... no, that's a wrong attitude I tell you. Anthony Robbins once said, the best way to succeed is to imitate successful people. This is true, I'm not telling you to go out and hack other comics and perform, I'm saying learn their creative process, realize what they went through before they got to where they are, and understand that it's through all that effort put together that they made it to where they got in the end. I keep telling my Uncle how we were both joking in October 2007 about me doing stand-up comedy and how it'll be cool if I joined the competition. 4 months later look at where it's taken me! It's not luck, it's honest work and effort on my part!! You might say "oh, that's also because you've got a gimmick, you're a foreigner who speaks Cantonese"... hey stop right there, do you think I was born with the ability to speak the language? You have no idea how many hours I sacrificed as a kid to learn this language! While my friends were watching cartoons at home or playing video games, I was stuck in a tutorial center trying to perfect my Cantonese abilities!! I hated every bit of it back then, but today, I reap my reward and I thank my parents all the time for keeping at it and forcing me to learn when I was younger! Today, everyone I meet regrets taking the easier road and not learning the language!

So I really just wanted to share another example of heart and effort combined equals results you want. When you have the honest passion for something and you put in genuine effort, you're going to reap the rewards because that's the only outcome! You don't expect to sow a seed, water it and hope for nothing to grow, it's only nature for something to sprout from the soil! This is a recipe for success! Of course, easier said than done but once you do it and realize it's possible, you grow a certain level of faith in your abilities and anything is attainable.

So, yes, um good luck and I'm freaking sleepy. Goodnight!


11 January 2008

It's been 10 days...and new TD-12K's!

Woah, January 11th already! Time feels like it's flown by but lucky me, I've been keeping a written record of what's happened so far.

Of course, a lot. Duh.

First, I thought for all of you who haven't seen my article in the SCMP, check it out, but if you're not in the mood to read, this ought to wake you up. This is the image that was featured on half the page!

Bahaha, totally suits me :)

Anyways, it's a Day 10 entry today and life's been tough with a lot happening (as usual!) but one thing I wanted to point out is that my band is finally coming together! We had a killer jam session on Wednesday! I'm talking seriously killer, like we played continuously for 5 hours straight! I was dead exhausted afterwards but it was well worth it. Everyday we end up calling each other saying "I want to play again...." but we have to wait till next Tuesday when we're all free to hit the audio waves. Speaking of music, my new drums have arrived!!!! My lovely, sexy TD-12K's are here! Oh my goodness! Oh my goodness!! I got a phone call from Tom Lee today while I was out and of course, I didn't have the receipt with me so I couldn't go sort out the rest of the payment but I'll try to do it by Sunday (I want to do it tomorrow, but I guess Sunday is best). Do you know how excited I am right now!?!?!? This is freaking awesome! I just hope I can move it into my room without being too noisy so the neighbors don't kick my ass from all the thumping. My bass drum playing has become a heck of a lot lighter than before already so this should be a good sign. Let's see. The only thing I'm worried about is that only the drums use mesh heads, the rest (ie. Hi-hat and cymbals) all are normal plastic which means they'll still be noisy when I hit them, so I suppose I'm going to have to leave proper drum practice to do the day and hand and feet exercises to the night. Another reason I want to put the drums in my room is so that I can record my tracks on the computer! I practice looking out the window and the computer's behind me, recording away! Ahh, I'll have to experiment a bit.

I'll also have to say farewell to my beloved TD-6V drum set. It has served me extremely well throughout these 2 and a half years. Before I let it go, I'll take a few sexy pictures of it :). It's seen me go through a lot in my life just like my computer, just like my family. To be honest, as stupid as this sounds, the TD-6V drums have really defined who I am today. If it weren't for them, I'd be someone else, for one I'll be a much, much shittier drummer due to lack of practice. I'm sell the drums to my good friend who's a beginner drummer so honestly, this is a perfect kit for him. As for me, I've evolved and grown in my skills and abilities so the TD-12K's are what I need now for my level.

Here's a sexy side by side comparison of the two:

Anyways, enough about my new drums. Well for my band, I always feel like we have a long way to go, but we've gotten to a point we're all happy with our level and are ready to show the world! So get ready Hong Kong! There's a new Metalcore band coming to down to blow you away! Don't get me wrong, we're no show-off band. We really do play from the heart. We're four guys who love this music. Speaking of the four of us, a lot of people have the wrong perception of people who are into this kind of music. Everyone thinks we're aggressive, smokers and just plain demonic. First of all, none of us smoke (which is a big plus for me, this was my dream as a band), all of us are really kind-hearted people. I always say, we take out all our anger and aggression in our music, leaving us with souls of nice-ness :) As for being demonic, well we do talk about the painful side of life in our lyrics, but not to the point of going down into hell because there's enough of it here on earth already.

Anyways, regarding my band, there's a lot left to do. First of all, I'm in charge of the website along with all things creative, which means everything! Yikes! Well why not, I know I can handle it, it's just a matter of managing myself properly right?

Anyways, today's day 10 entry is an entry of celebration. After being in this band for a long and hard two and a half years, we are finally complete, confident and serious. This is an entry to say you know what, if you keep at it, and you want it bad enough, it will happen. This band has been a dream to me for a long time, I've worked hard at my drumming, I've studied a lot of other metalcore bands, I've taken the time to understand our music and now I finally reap what I've sowed.

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06 January 2008

Chinese and English Stand-up Back to Back!

Poof!! I'm totally exhausted! I finally have the energy to even log in and type an entry here. I've been sitting here dazed and confused and just brain dead for the past hour because I'm so tired.

I did a back to back Chinese and English stand-up comedy show tonight! It was awesome! The English show sold out probably because of all the publicity it received in the South China Morning Post that featured an article about me, so we had a great, great crowd and I finally felt confident enough to play with the audience and mess around with them. I was so nervous at first because I'd been sitting on the stairs near the toilet area writing some new jokes I just thought of because I wanted to make fun of the audience. There were a lot of Indians, Chinese and White people so I wanted to try to cover all grounds, I think I did it quite well :)

I have to say, the stress I went through most of today (Saturday) was crazy! I was on the verge of breaking down and even moments before I had to perform, I just wanted to die and be done with it! No matter how much you prepare, you're still nervous before a show, no matter what. But when you're done and the audience is laughing and applauding, it's a good worthwhile feeling. All that hard work and pain pays off in the end!

I'm excited but also stressed because I know I still have a long, long way to go, but hey, I've only been doing stand-up for around 3 months now, so I think I'm doing pretty good so far. I have to say, I've been thrown into the deep end of the comedy pool but in many ways, after all the shit I've been through in life, I'm ready to fight it out and make sure I don't drown. It's really, really tough but as The Road Less Travelled says:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I —
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

I'll only be able to excel if I take that tougher path. Kind of like my decision to take the pitch black route on my hike to the peak on New Year's night. It made all the difference to me. Honestly. I feel like sitting down and just crying right now, not because I'm sad or frustrated, I just feel so open at this moment, like I'm surrounded by a bulletproof coating but naked underneath. I know I'm safe right now, but I know there's a lot more to come.

Tomorrow's going to be a big, big day for me, I have a lot I want to get done so tonight, I'm not allowing myself to do anything except relax. I wanted to practice some drum hand exercises but I'll just frustrate myself and it will be wasted so instead, I'm going to load up a movie, enjoy and fall off to sleep.

One week into 2008, and so much has happened already!! I hope the year is going very, very well for you all so far! :D

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04 January 2008

Just a quick thing I'd like to share

I was reading Photography Foundations for Art and Design, Third Edition: A Practical Guide to Creative Photography and it quoted a passage from the book The Photographer's Eye and it made me realize how I'm living the life of a photographer. Not in the sense that I'm a photographer, but in many ways the way I have to deal with everyday is like a photographer has to deal with the world around him/her.

To quote out of context is the essence of the photographer's craft. His central problem is a simple one: what shall he include, what shall he reject?

I've talked about how my life isn't about what to do but what not to do. It's just like a photographer who has too many photo opportunities around him but only a roll of film that can take 36 photos. That's like how I have so much I want to and can do, but I only have 24 hours a day to do it. I guess I'm at that phase where I'm trying to find myself because the world is so great yet I'm so small, but I want to make a positive impact on it.

Well I just thought I'd share :).


01 January 2008

Carpe Diem

Seize the day! That's what I'm determined to do! As expected, I woke up to a beautiful day just like the 1st of January last year! I'm ready to take a tonne of photos of everywhere then hit the gym as planned!

So just to keep you updated, I did go for a walk to the peak and you know what? I loved it! It was dead quiet and all I could hear was the squeaking of the trees and bushes. I walked in pitch black (yay to my LED light ring!) and it was spooooooky!! Woah!! It kept me alive! Not to mention it was freeeezing cold up there with the wind blowing at you at unearthly temperatures! I loved every bit of it! I filmed my whole journey down so this time next year I can see what I was doing a year ago and what I was thinking. Brrrrr!! My hands are still cold but last night they were frozen stiff... literally! I got to Lugard Road and there's a choice between the longer (more scenic) and shorter route. I decided since I was there, I might as well go the longer way! OMFG! The view!!! Breath-taking!! Every few steps I took I had to pause and just soak in Hong Kong's night view! I've been there during the day but at night! Woah! Halfway through, some dogs started barking, I got so freaked out because I was worried they were stray dogs and may come find me... because one time I went jogging late at night from my home to Wanchai and on my way there were some dogs that started chasing me (I was running, not a good move in front of dogs) so I had to play it safe and keep it down. After a while the barking stopped and I kept going and dropping my jaw every now and then at the view.

I was so inspired and pumped last night you won't believe it! I got to the peak and then walked down Old Peak Road and eventually met up with a friend for a bit in Lan Kwai Fong.... got me some snacks and finally headed home. Lovely.

I'm a happy man, I really, really am. I was talking to my friend last night and I was just psyched about what was ahead for me this year. I'm ready to face all the downs that I'm going to be thrown into because I know I have the ability to climb back up, it's just a matter of time, focus and determination!

I woke up today to a nice clean room and a set routine of what I need to do in the mornings. Started it off with my breathing exercises and brushed my teeth. Guess what, today's also a Day10 entry!! Wooohoo! Way to start the new year! So anyways, lovely, lovely Day 10 entry.

I can finally calm down with my entries now although I've started getting used to waking up and typing my moods and thoughts after a good night's rest. I've got a lot ahead of me today (as usual) but for a change, I'm not worried or overwhelmed. I know everything I want to do takes time, but that's one thing, for once, I have on my side. After working so hard in the last few weeks sorting myself and my life out, I've got things set up for myself :) Now is the time to execute. So let me just say, as a Day 10 entry, the wisdom I have to share with everyone is that you can learn, plan, prepare for the rest of your life, but it comes time to finally execute and that's what counts. Just like a performance, no one cares how long you've practiced but if you screw up in your performance, you're just as good as the other guy who screwed up because he didn't practice at all. Let loose and have faith in yourself. Tension does nothing but come in the way. This has affected my photography. I used to be so technical with my photos, trying to figure out how I'd get that perfect picture technically, but now I just let loose and play, I take snap shots without thinking twice, and just play around. I move my lamps randomly till I find a perfect spot and then snap away! Even today, when I go out later on to take photos, I'm not going to sit and try to focus on the rule of thirds, or determine what my shutter speed and aperture should be, I'm just going to snap, and snap randomly, at different settings with no care as to what I want. The key is for me to let loose because I know I can get a good picture, I know the potential is there, it's just a matter of me not stopping myself by over-thinking and -worrying in a technical aspect.

So carpe diem everyone! I've got the day ahead of me and so do you! Face the future head on and say it with me!! "Bring it!!!!!!!"

Update at 11:05pm:
The day is still being seized :) I've currently been at my lovely computer burning through some outstanding projects I have so that all my clients who go back to work tomorrow in the morning can have their stuff ready for them to tackle through first thing in the morning. Speaking of my computer, for all of you curious as to what my set up is like, here you are. Enjoy! Back to work for me now!

Update at 11:57pm:
I had to update this post before the day ends because I wanted to add one final item that I thought was worthy of a Day 10 entry. I'm reading Photography Foundations for Art and Design, Third Edition: A Practical Guide to Creative Photography and I came across something very cool, I had one of those moments where I just stopped and absorbed what it said. I wanted to share it with everyone here so here yo go:
Page 9, The Process of Self-Expression
Why do we take photographs? Do we take them for other people to admire our skill? Do we take them as a record, document or as a trophy? Do we create them to advertise to our friends that we are having a beautiful, successful, enviable life, or do we create them for ourselves, a process of expressing how we feel to be alive in our world.

I create images because the act of looking helps me to slow down and actually look at the life I am living. It gets me 'out of my head' and into the world -- it helps me to connect and appreciate what is around me, and this act helps me to express myself. Art is about expressing yourself. It doesn't really matter if no one 'gets it' so long as it was a meaningful exercise to you. Buddhist monks make 'Mandala' paintings by pouring sand slowly and carefully to create intricate designs. They work on the art for days and then tip it into the sea when they are finished. The art is often about the process rather than the outcome. When someone appreciates your art it is indeed rewarding. Someone else understands us -- someone else 'gets it' too.

Wow, that really made me think. I mean, it's really encouraging if you think like that because it makes you loosen up even more and create freely because you're doing so at your own will rather than to impress someone else. It kind of goes against all art schools where your projects are graded, but this, in my opinion, is the path to success in terms of creativity. It made me think "Doesn't this just mean that if you do a crap job, you can say it's not created for others but for yourself?" Well the thing is, you can fool the world, but you can't fool yourself. Deep down inside, you'll know if you're happy with what you created. I mean, I can tell you, the photos I took of my drum set before were awesome in my eyes. When I showed it to my photographer friend, he was less than impressed. Oddly, I didn't feel upset because first of all I never said I was a kick-ass photographer, and the point is, I remember how I felt when I first saw the photograph so no matter what, I appreciated the image a lot and that's all that matters. As the book I quoted says, if someone else 'gets it', that's an extra bonus of a reward, but otherwise, if I get it, I got what I wanted. Good night :)

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