Working on my immortality


Jason VandenBerghes, the creator behind the awesome game For Honor, said that immortality comes when you can give your people something that they needed, but they didn't have, and that they can keep when you are gone. That is how you survive your own death. 

I remember when I heard this the first time. It's the first thing you hear in the documentary "Playing Hard" on Netflix. Which actually is about the dream he had about creating a great game. I was totally blown away when I heard it so I had to write it down in my phone. Now, about a year later I still think about just that and just felt that I needed to share that message to you who reads this right now. And that's the topic of today's blog-update. How it feels to be working on your own immortality! 

Wednesday is already over and we're moving towards the weekend. And that is something that is funny when you're working on your immortality, I don't even think about the weekends anymore. Sure, they are welcomed when they do arrive, but it's not like it used to be. Usually I would hate Mondays and count every minute until the weekend. It was hard to wake up each morning and feel that the day will be filled with same generic and pointless tasks as yesterday. It was a huge celebration every time Friday arrived. It's was easier to work knowing that the weekend would start in a few hours. But the hours went painfully slow. 1 minute felt like an hour and so on. 

Now, for the first time in my life I have experienced this thing called Flow State. It's a state of mind where time works differently in some way. Some psychologists mean that if you constantly keep entering this mode, you have found your line of work or even your line of purpose. And I can proudly say that I have found it. Each day is passing faster than usual. One hour of work feels like ten minutes. The math is pretty simple. 8 hour school day feels like 80 minutes to me. Of course I'm exaggerating a bit, but I think you get what I'm trying to say. It's an amazing feeling to feel this way. This has also made me a better person in a sense. As I feel energized and happy about what I do, it's easier to bring on a smile when I come home to meet my family. I don't feel stressed out anymore. I don't feel that I has to do something when I get home - besides enjoying the time with my kids and wife. The new workstation I bought for VFX purposes at home is basically just standing there collecting dust. Sure, it's there when I need to study at home, but since that only has happened once so far, it just stands there. It's ironic and feels fantastic to say that I don't really need a computer when I'm at home. I already put in almost 12 hours of VFX-work everyday if I count the days at school and combine them with the hours it takes to commute between home and school. 

Why do I love this line of work so much then? 

As a VFX-Artist, I actually gets to use and challenge my brain to the maximum. Finally, I feel that my creative energy is being used for something I really do care about. I have always said that I wish I had problems I really wanted to solve. And in this line of work I get just that. For example, right now we have a big project at school. It's a bit hush hush, but I guess I can say that the task is explosions, debris and demolition. For this I got the honor to enter the position as Head of FX - meaning that I lead a team which purpose is to handle all simulations. Our job is to create a realistic explosion and demolition in 3D space and then as a whole class put together a final piece of movie - just like a real pipeline at a VFX-studio. I personally have only worked very basic with fracture simulations in Cinema 4D using the voronoi fracture in there. I have never used a node-based and advanced software such as Houdini before, and now I have the task to lead a team in this endeavor. I opened Houdini for the first time like a week ago, and I really started to feel nervous at the beginning of this week. Now, three days later I feel passionate and hopeful that we're going to make it. My team is divided into three where I learn the workflow of demolition, one works on the explosion and one with glass-shatter and force. Together, we learn the basics faster and as of today we have something that looks really great to be honest.
I will stop there to avoid getting to technical. But the point is that I now has problems I want to have. The days are going so fast and my learning curve has gotten to a point where i'm almost falling backwards. It's an amazing feeling!

The knowledge I obtain while studying at this program,I can later on use to start working on my masterpiece. I don't really know what it is yet, but I know it's on its way. I'm walking straight towards it. And that is my point. Creations that people enjoy through time, that's immortality to me. And I'm heading straight towards just that. That is what I call a dream job for real.