At work the other day, while I was clacking away writing code for some tool or other, I asked myself a question. Since I can sometimes do two things at once, I kept on coding while thinking about this: Is this where I want to be and what I want to be doing in five years? Two years? One year? Now?
My immediate answer to this unoriginal query was: “Hmmm….good question.” After giving myself a high-five for not being rash with my response, I took a little time to ponder.
Let me give you a little bit of context here. I’ve been a Character TD (rigger, technical animator, etc.) for, jeez, almost 15 years now. For at least the last five years, and probably longer, I’ve felt that I might be in the wrong profession. It’s not that I hate rigging or anything, and there are plenty of challenges in the right environment, but the industry has changed so much and my life has changed so much over the years that there just isn’t the compatibility there once was. A lot of it has to do with having a family and wanting some semblance of stability in the location of my choosing, not dictated by the concentration of video game and visual effects companies which is only as stable as the subsidies and tax credits the entertainment industry gets in those countries. If I decide to uproot my family to move to a new state or country, I want it to be because that’s where we want to live, not because I’m chasing the next gig.
Woah, let’s get back on track here….
I wish I could say that once I made this connection between my past and potential future there was a lot of soul-searching and stressful deliberation, but that’s not me. The amount of time it took between connection and action can be measured in milliseconds. At that moment, my immediate future was clear. I was going to be a Full Stack Developer come hell or high water. Given how hot it is outside (103°F as I write) and the probable rising of the seas not long after the state-sized icebergs break off from Antarctica, I can see my mettle will be tested. An adventure isn’t an adventure without adversity, so I’m ready.
The path ahead is being laid out brick-by-brick as I march toward my goal on the horizon. Future installments here are going to be a record of what happens along the way.
Next up: “Making of a Full Stack Developer: Week #1.”