The Next Step

Lately, I’ve been kinda stuck in the mud.

I mean, I’m not sure what to do next, in terms of a project, hobby, or creation. I was watching one of my favorite YouTubers earlier, Jake Roper (I’ve mentioned him in a previous post or two), and I usually go to his videos when I need to get motivated. Not that I’m unmotivated right now, though, but his energy and drive seem to fuel me.

So I watched one of his recent uploads, My Tattoos, simply a video where he goes on to answer some questions Q&A style, and one of the questions was for him to show his tattoos. He did, and one of them stuck out to me, and that was a small one on his wrist that reads “Make”. Jake is a highly motivated individual, as evident through his work on Vsauce3 and many other projects, and this word, make, is a word he always implores to his viewers. He always says stuff like “Just go…make something. Anything. Create, make stuff, doesn’t matter what it is”, etc. It seems he is one of those people– a person which just seems to have a motor, an inner engine, a passion to create.

If I’m gonna commend one thing about me, it’d probably be this. It’d be that I can relate to Jake here. For some reason, I always have this urge within myself to be doing stuff.  Worthwhile stuff. I don’t know how it got there, how this drive to make developed, but I’d probably say it stems from making me feel happy. I feel happy with myself if I feel I’m fulfilling that desire; the desire to brainstorm an idea, to make that idea happen, and to walk away with something. Something I’ve done.

Lately, I haven’t been moving forward with this, however. I’d say for the past ~2 weeks, I’ve essentially just been working my job, continuing on college applications, and playing video games. That’s pretty much it. And I’ve always wondered why I’d never been a big gamer, it’s because after sitting down for a few hours on a game, I get restless, I get dissatisfied with myself. I feel like I’m wasting seconds/minutes/hours by just playing games, or doing something similar. Yet, almost all of my nights in January were devoted to BioShock, Halo, Pokemon, Mortal Kombat.

I always have to remind myself that it’s okay to relax sometimes, it’s okay to do what I want for the sole reason of enjoying it. But even then, this urge to start something new arises. Although, this time around, I’ve been mentally stewing  ideas, and nothing seems to stick out to me. I’ve been thinking of the next step, but I can’t seem to come up with much. So I wanna brainstorm here- I figure it will help me to physically type out some of my ideas, and it would be fun for you to read some of the things on my mind.

One medium that I always try and come back to is video. I like making videos, and they can really be effective if shared online. I haven’t made a short film in almost 2 years, and that was my first one sigh. Along the way, I’ve made a few that are like ~60% complete on my laptop. They’ve been abandoned. So, I think a new project I want to start on is a new video idea, one that I stick with and actually complete. However, there are things other than videos that I want to do. Some of the ideas I’ve conjured up include:

  • A social experiment- either a question that I ask random people, or maybe a joke/reaction kinda video such as “Awkwardly saying ‘Sup’ to people”. Idk though, I’m way more keen on interviewing random people on interesting questions/topics.
  • A mini documentary. This one is frustrating to talk about, because when I came up with this idea in December of last year, I was really set on it. I want to make a 10-15 minute mini-doc on the prevalence of prescription drugs in my generation. I have a paper with the gameplan written out, I just need to pick up the camera and start.
  • A painting. I enjoy painting. Mainly, I’ve done impressionism, as it’s probably my favorite style. In my room, you’d find a bunch of half-done works. Canvases stained with incoherent paint blobs. And, some are for good reason (they sucked) and others are just a product of my laziness. So, I want to make a new one, a special one, one that I can call a masterpiece.
  • Informational science video. Another thing I’ve flirted with for a while. I created a whiteboard animation video on the circadian rhythm, cut it up and edited it, and then never recorded the backing audio. So, it sits on my computer, all alone and left for dead. I have so many different topics I want to talk about, like intriguing medical research I’ve read up on. Ultimately, I want to package it into an entertaining video. Some scientific things I’ve wanted to explore include sleep disorders, depression/mental disorders, health issues, neuroscience in general, and plenty more.
  • Landscape/artistic video. Cinematography is really important in any film/video, and I want to practice it. My dad got me a drone for my birthday, which is amazing, but I haven’t put it to use yet. I was thinking maybe something along the lines of filming the UTD campus, a nature preserve video, or something along those lines. I’d wanna add a good track in to make it a short-but-sweet video that is eye candy.

As you can see, brainstorming can yield a lot of creative fuel. I think writing all of this down will not only help me remember, but it should help me to take the ideas I have more seriously. No one is pushing me to do any of this; there is no grade I’ll receive for completing one of these ideas, there isn’t any money waiting for me, and there is no deadline. But, I’m at a point in my life where I’m relatively free- I only work ~ 25 hours and only am taking a few classes to complete my 2 year degree- so the time is now. Plenty of my friends are at 4 year universities taking 18 hours, some are also trying to balance jobs, so if they don’t make things, it’s likely because they can’t. That’s how I see it, and that’s how I should see it. Next year, I should be at a new college working towards an engineering degree. I won’t have nearly as much expendable time.

After all, it helps to remind myself that this blog itself is a project I took on. One that I thought was easy enough to start, and with consistency, will be healthy for my inner urge to do stuff. This blog helps me practice consistency, helps me keep the right side of my brain active, and every time I post it helps dust off stagnancy. My least favorite position to be in; stagnant. Not moving forward, maybe not necessarily moving back, but just being static and frozen and to me, boring.

Thanks for reading,

Luca DeJesu, 4:22 PM 

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