Monday, February 11, 2013


The last several weeks I've been taking time off and cleaning out the studio and house of many things that are just sitting, things I've not used nor enjoyed anymore, or things just collecting dust in awkward spots. Having four big cardboard boxes of music CDs in your living room sitting for over four years sends the idea you are a hoarder or just simply run out of space. I'm not a hoarder since it's easy for me to trash stuff, but was keeping them there in boxes so I could transfer them to digital and then get rid of the physical CDs, but when they sit... and sit... and sit some more, they start to look like a piece of furniture, which they are not. I started ripping my CDs back a year of so ago and got one box done but the other three were still sitting there beckoning for me to finish. I, of course, got sidetracked with the final year of my father's illness and work. This new year triggered me now into final motion to go through and clean out my life and start a new chapter. A good downsizing was needed and so I went to work starting with my studio and going through every art shelf, drawer, and art table throwing out or shredding at least four trash cans of trash every few days. Bags of shredded pulp were thrown into the trash cans and waved good-bye. Above is a pic of the trash cans on Monday morning after one such trash collection. I even bought new jackets, new sneakers, and a new hat just to start out fresh and new. Change is good.

Back last October, I had bought a great, though expensive, shredder at Staples that has been doing a tremendous job! I originally got it to shred old drawings, old paperwork, documents and the like to get rid of stuff and thin the herd and not have to worry about identity theft. I will talk about the shredder I got in another post. My main reason for buying a great shredder over buying a cheaper one is that I simply had a lot to shred. Not only stuff that I wanted to get rid of but all the left over paperwork that that dealt with my father. My mother needed/wanted to get rid of it safely and so I took it to do away with it right. He had numberous stacks of doctors, hospital, AARP paperwork, prescriptions, old bill receipts, etc that needed to be destroyed and a small shredder that only work for 2 minutes before it shuts down from overheating was not going to cut it. So I got the biggest and the best one I could find. Over the months, it's been on the of the best things I've gotten in a looooonnnggg time. You get so jacked watching stuff go down it that you start looking for other things you can throw down it.

I've whittled my art supplies down to those I need and really use the most. If it's not digital, I found that I used basically the same materials over and over again the past ten years. I'll be writing a post about that as well very soon. I've gotten rid of old drawings, sketches, unfinished drawings and kept the best ones or ones that had some kind of sellability to them. This stuff simply builds up to a point and it just sits there and collects dust. Since I've become mostly all digital in other aspects of my life, the more simplistic the rest of my working area is the better. Many hand drawn sketches I've done for work projects on 8.5 x 11 paper I saved since I thought they might sell at a convention or something, but I've not done any conventions in about two years or more (since my love of comics is kind of low, actually the bullshit politics of comics is making it low, not my love for the medium) so they kind of sit but it's a potential money maker at some point.

When I hit the basement, I trashed old VHS tapes and kept only a few that had things I wanted to transfer over to digital, but most of it was old movies I copied and they've been sitting for over ten years. You can't sell even official store bought ones unless they were super rare and never came out on DVD. Otherwise you can try to sell them for a quarter a tape. Yes, $.25 can add up to a lot but you then have to find the person who even deals with tapes anymore. I've personally not watched any video tape media since the mid to late 90s. Since 2001, it's been all DVD, which is outdated and in the toilet as well. Hell, it's been over two years now since I had a DVD player plugged in. But video tape is still, amazingly, a superb archival container in the long run even though the quality isn't as high as a BluRay. More on all this soon in a post as well. I knew video tapes were truly done when they made a joke about them of sorts on the show Elementary recently when a video camera shot video of a murder scene and was retrieved by the police and being on video tape the police looked at it and wondered what would they play it on. No one had a VCR anymore. Luckily Sherlock Holmes had several VCR players in a closet at his lodgings since he liked to watch old police interrogations and to study them. I thought to keep my VCR machines as well since you just never know. I had three but will keep two.

Old computer equipment was thrown away last summer and fall at township collecting events, the back barn was completely cleaned out during September and now the snowblower and lawn mower have lots of room. I marvel how clean it is every time I open the back barn door to get something from it. It took several weeks to get rid of all the stuff in it but it was well worth it in the long run... and now with all the other downsizing I did in the house recently, it's really looking great but there are still clutteres of stuff sitting in tupperware containers and cardboard boxes. My eyes then fell on my DVD and music CD collections...

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