I was talking to someone graduating college in a matter of days the other day and he asked me if i had any advice or insight about the creative market after working in the field so long (15 years so far). Gave him kind of a meh answer at the time but its been on my mind alot lately and I figured i should jot it down before i forget my thoughts on it.
For a long time I've always felt i DIDNT have good advice.
I felt dumb / weird answering questions like that because its such an awkward confrontational question, and you feel a scorching amount of heat of not being able to give some steve jobs-level sage advice.
But after critical thought and soul searching, i've realized I CAN answer that question and actually SHOULD.
While I could pick MANY different angles, and turn this into a mini-autobiography the size of a small bible, i wont. Ill pick one.
I moved here to philadelphia, in 2010. I HATED philadelphia, i hated visiting here on field trips, i didnt particularly care for it during mod meet-ups and newgrounds events. It was just dirty, rude, and you can't buy beer from gas stations for some reason. Why would i possibly want to move there, and when i first did, i asked myself the same thing. I think over the years I came to the realization and the true value of surrounding yourself with people that support and elevate you. For me that was people like @TomFulp and @Afro-Ninja, and @The-Swain, and Stamper, and all the other people who brought out the best in me while i was here.
So i think my advice, is to seek out that same sort of company, it could be physically, by moving somewhere, could be virtually, by joining discord groups, or forums or communities (newgrounds is a good example) of people who bring out the best in you. I think then, you start to find purpose in your work and you feel better in your decision making processes as a result.
As with any piece of advice, its worth nothing if it was a one way channel, so i think its just as important to also give back that same support and love for the people in your industry.
Fast forward to today, i do actually love living in philadelphia, piss smell subway stations and all, and i think a large part of that was in part to the people i surrounded myself with.
In a nutshell, who knows where else i may end up, or even if i'll like wherever that city / town ends up being, as long as i surround myself with people who believe in what i do and challenge and elevate my creative visions, ill be OK, and you will too.