Life is made up of years, which are shaped by what you accomplish each month. Months are defined by days and how you pass them. Days consist of hours which are made up of minutes. Minutes are defined by seconds and how you choose to spend them. These are facts.
“Spend the next few seconds as if your life depends on it, because it does.”
This is a concept I’m learning to live by. It’s easy to grasp intellectually, but to actually believe in it—emotionally, is tough.
Another way to think of focus is through the phrase asset allocation. I'm not referring to your investment portfolio, I’m talking about time. How you spend your time, is your ultimate asset allocation.
Asset allocation often refers to where you put your money depending on where you want to end up financially. Where do you wish to end up? How do you think you’re going to get there? We invest our money in order to grow it. It's an investment because (if everything goes according to plan) eventually, that money will be worth a lot more, buying us the lifestyle we want before we die.
Investing your time is no different than investing money. Why go to school, learn a new software or skill like public speaking? We don’t get a prize just for becoming skilled. We invest time in learning new skills because of the life we want to be able to enjoy before we die.
I’ve always been conscious of how I spend my time on a certain level. My mother tells a story of when I was about four years old. Before bed, I’d ask her, “Was today a good day?”
“Sure, what do you think?”
I shot back another question, “Well, what did I do?” And she would recount the various activities of the day. And as long as she made it sound like I did many things, I could sleep with a clear conscience. From an early age, I’ve felt that an unproductive day was a day wasted.
And I still believe that, although my definition of productive has evolved from quantity of activity to quality of activity.
As mentioned briefly in my previous email, my interests have shifted from aspiring to become a product designer to aspiring to become an expert-level 3D artist. 3D Artist is a fairly vague term, but that’s as specific as I am able to be right now. After honing my skills for years at and after college, I realize that I don’t have a penchant for industrial design.
I’m more interested in creating powerful, entertaining or useful images though a digital workflow involving 3D modeling and rendering. Whether these images are used for concept creation, marketing, packaging, product development, interior planning, technical documentation or internal communication, I don’t care. It’s the process I enjoy. You know the old adage, “Love the work you do and you’ll never need to work a day in your life.” I love modeling and creating CGI.
Because I’ve naturally drifted in this direction over the past couple of years or so, this doesn’t seem like a big leap to make, but today’s 3D artists are so technically talented and versatile, I’ve got some work to do before I can join the ranks.
Luckily, I’ve got a job that relies on me being a teacher as well a skilled 3D modeler and renderer. Just under two months ago, I began working for Luxion, a software company that produces a product called KeyShot, which is quickly becoming a favorite rendering software for 3D artists, engineers, designers and others across the world. Right now, I love my job and hope to work for Luxion for a long time.
The way I’m going to become a better 3D artist is to spend time doing two things:
And that’s it. Time spent writing articles, networking online, accepting freelance jobs, creating tutorials and anything else I do is time not spent modeling or rendering. I’m going to be carefully allocating my ultimate asset in order to reach my goal.