* JAN 30, 2021 - So.
Let's just skip the last year and a bit. You were there, I assume, so you know things went a little bit sideways. Instead, let's talk about education and the future.
On December 15th, 2020, I completed my school work to earn my Diploma of Organic Land Care through Gaia College. This is in addition to being an accredited member of SOUL, the Society for Organic Urban Land Care.
I'm currently working with the City of Victoria and the Quadra Village Community Center to develop a community garden in my neighbourhood, giving me a chance to flex these fancy new skills and learnings.
In unrelated-yet-still-education-focused news, I've been putting a lot of energy into 'Jehkoba's Fantasy' the past few weeks, which is a graphic overhaul for the game Minecraft. Alongside the usual poking of pixels, I've learned some of the basics of recording, editing, and producing videos, as well as having licensed my first ever piece of music for use in said mini-film. OBS and Blender are two pieces of open-source software that are pretty darn powerful, especially with a $0 price tag attached, and I've put together my first video with their combined assistance (see above).
Other artistic ventures have been fairly minimal, though this last chunky bit in the above paragraph has certainly felt meaty. Not only am I really happy with the results, but they feel much more tangible and skill-learn-y than the last couple years of arting.
I've also decided to put up a Donation Button on the texture pack home page. I'm not expecting to be flooded with fivers for doing so, but it feels like a step in the direction of recognizing my work has value, and inviting others to see it in the same light.
Hope you're all doing well and staying safe. ♥
* NOV 18, 2019 - Dear Diary,
I've removed my work from all my print-on-demand accounts. Here's why:
For the past two years, I've been learning more about ecology, permaculture, the environmental movement, the climate emergency, and sustainable product development in general, and I'm all the way on board.
Working with print-on-demand sites offered a platform to get my art out there from an early age, but did so in a way that runs contrary to these ideals. The vast majority of products on offer are either cheaply made from petroleum-derived substances, promote cheap foreign and/or child labour, and work to ship products across the world via fossil-fueled transport systems.
This is a drop in the bucket. In the grand scale of things, it won't make one lick of difference whether I keep using these services or not. My decision to continue or halt selling these products will not be the deciding factor in meeting or blowing past the IPCC's goal of reaching no more than 1.5 degrees of warming.
What this does is align my values more closely with my actions. It removes a layer of cognitive dissonance from my life, however small, and streamlines my actions moving ahead. In short, it's an act of increasing authenticity.
I'm currently in school learning about organic landscape management, which is essentially the intersection between traditional landscaping, permaculture, the one straw revolution, and other environmental and ecological ideologies. This field of study and action is the direction I want to move towards, and removing cheap print-on-demand products from my portfolio is one very small (yet important) step in my mind.
I apologize to anyone hoping to buy my designs through these mediums. I'm thinking of ways I might still offer my art that feel more in line with my values. If and when I do so, I'll absolutely be posting about it here. Until then, my focus will be on school, the fantasy pack, ad hoc graphic design work, and other more sustainable forms of artistic expression.
Thank you for taking the time to read this,
- Zack ♥
* JULY 9, 2019 - And lo! He did release a new batch of super nerdy t-shirt designs!
I'm really, really happy with these silly little doofers. I may have ordered several for myself in a frenzy as soon as they were uploaded. :P You can find them on my TeePublic store (there are Light and Dark versions for each one). I'll upload them to other print-on-demand accounts in the near future. ♥
* FEB 6, 2019 - Well, that was a year of cafe management and not much else.
Hi, gang. Over the next few months I'm going to be delving back into my artistic ventures, including a texture pack update, a couple new shirt designs, revisiting my tarot deck, and possibly learning to work with watercolours. It's been a solid year of not having time or energy for art, and I'm happy to say that things have changed. ♥
* OCT 31, 2017 - For the past month and a half, I've been working like mad on the texture pack, improving every aspect. I'm enjoying the process, and feel like this is turning into a kind of portfolio piece for pixel art and low-res game graphics, which is exciting. ♥
I've also completed more design commissions over the past month, and there'll be a proper update with new portfolio pieces soon.
The show at Bubby's Kitchen is coming to a successful close, and I'm bringing the remaining pieces home in a couple days. I think my next painting will be a bit... Different. I'm getting the urge to explore more abstract subject matter for the next series.
I think I'm looking forward to what all this inspiration is leading to.
* Sep 2, 2017: I've added a new thing to my shops.
"Crippling Self-Doubt" is a response to the fabulous designs by the Stay Home Club. I wanted to do a fun, ironic piece around awareness of anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem.
You can find this silly bugger on a range of products at any of my print-on-demand accounts below. ♥
* Aug 31, 2017: Welcome to the new and improved portfolio site by Zack Simon. ♥
Good news! The wonderful folks at Bubby's Kitchen (355 Cook St) will be hosting my art in their space from ~September 15th - October 31st. I highly suggest you explore their menu, if you haven't already.