I mentioned over on my hobby blog that I’m trying to know when to stop, rather than doing something and then tinkering with it endlessly because “it’s not good enough” or similar (or simply because I can). This is a frustrating habit of mine, because it’s a waste of time and effort, and usually leads to extra and unnecessary stress.
This is something that happens in loads of different situations, but within the context of my hobby projects it happens more often than not, and it’s the main reason I don’t finish anything near as much as I’d like, and it’s in this context I think I can make the most progress in “fixing things” overall.
It just so happened I came across two videos (one recent, one older) by Tabletop Minions which are on this exact topic:
Knowing When It’s Best to Quit
The Price of Perfection
Addendum: “It’s not good enough” has frequently been a case why I haven’t blogged regularly – similar to what’s described/linked in “How to Talk Yourself out of your New Year’s Blogging Resolution… One Day At A Time” – so overcoming this habit will benefit more than my hobby projects. It’s still early days, and posting has been a bit “spotty” since going back to work after the festive break, but I’m slowly getting there…
The video above reminded me of something I used to do religiously when starting a new project: keep a mood board, or folder of inspiration for the project – images mostly, but also articles and anything else I found which was relevant.
I still have a stack of articles ripped from old White Dwarf issues which I refer to whenever I’m starting any Space Marine project. They’ve served me well over the last couple of years. Of course, there’s always the internet and the many, many, many books put out by Games Workshop and other miniatures companies.
It’s a very useful practice, and one I’m going to get back into the habit of.
By way of an example, here’s some of the material I’ve collected so far for my next project:
Do you gather up inspiration sources for your projects? What’s your favourite source?
Photo above from the Smithsonian magazine, taken by Alex Cornell in Antarctica. See more at their website.
If you have an iPad, and have browsed Games Workshop’s digital product line in the iBookstore, then you may have read (or be aware of) the A Call to Arms series. If not, the quick summary is: each month we follow the progress of four gamers as they collect and paint an entirely new Warhammer 40000 army. They each have a fixed monthly budget which they use to expand their forces.
Personally, I’ve always found this sort of article fascinating. I love getting insight into how others go about their hobby – the mental process behind how they choose, model, paint, and game with their collections. I also love seeing “real” armies – not the bog-standard GW Studio armies on display in the Codexes and White Dwarf battle reports. A look at other hobbyist’s collections are always my favourite articles in White Dwarf, and the reason I read many hobbyist forums and blogs.
One of the Armies we follow in GW’s A Call to Arms book is Stefano Carlini’s Flesh Tearers.
So what has this got to do with me? For one, I think it’s an inspirational and fun way to approach a new army. Secondly, my Local, Friendly, GW Store is running their own version of Call to Arms to kick off the New Year.
Each month until April, participants aim to paint up around £50 worth of miniatures for their new army (any GW game system). Every month the entries will be judged by the store manager, and there will be a prize for the overall winner. The competitive element is a great motivator, and the whole thing should be sociable and well-spirited. No doubt there will be plenty of games as our armies grow in size, so it will be win-win for me – I’ll get my new army started, and I’ll get to play more games than I’ve managed so far!
I’ve already planned out my army. More details will be posted in the blog over the next few days, so keep an eye out! I’m always looking for feedback, so once I’ve posted the details feel free to give your opinion!
What do you think? Would you take part in a similar challenge? Are you already? Leave a comment below!
What do you do with all the ideas you come up with but for one reason or another are unable to follow through on? I’m thinking along the lines of those projects we all like to fill our time with – in my case it’s usually programming/computer related. It could be a lack of time, resource, or ability – it doesn’t matter; we all have ideas for projects which we think would be great but never take-off. Read More