I stared at that blank spot for a really long time before I figured out how to start this. I knew what I wanted to say and generally how I wanted to say it, but finding that launching off point is difficult. So, I did what I always do when I’m writing, programming, or painting and I get stuck: I spun my chair around. This is roughly the view that I get from there.
The white space on the walls is slowly shrinking. My rooms have always been that way, stacked wall to wall and ceiling to floor with posters, paintings, drawings, shelves, and bookcases. I can’t stand white walls. I always have to be looking at something. These are the folding doors hiding our washer and dryer. I call them the “manga doors”, and it’s the first thing you see when you walk in the front door.
For the first two months in this apartment, I couldn’t stand that huge expanse of white. It was like it was mocking me. So I printed out pages from some of our favorite manga, laminated them with contact paper, and posted them on the doors with double sided tape. It’s still a work in progress, and I’ve changed out a few of the panels over the past couple of years. You get the general idea, though.
The bedroom is populated with awards, certificates, family photos, and fine art prints. The living room is mostly my sword collection and tall bookshelves filled with more video games, books, crafting supplies, and my vinyl collection.
I started doing this because, basically, it works for me on an artistic level. When my brain is buzzing at a low amplitude, and I want to make the noise spike, even just a little, I can gaze upon that wall scroll or this poster or that painting over yonder, and it will bring me somewhere. A memory of a thing I did or saw or read or played. A notion that things could be done this way or that way. I can shift the angle of how I look at things, and, usually, that brings me a shot of inspiration. Then it all begins to flow, and the world around me erupts in a technicolor wonderland of unfiltered awesome. If I’m lucky, I can distill maybe a quarter of that into something great or meaningful. Then I’ve got this thing. It may be terrible, it may be wonderful. But it exists, and I made it exist. It “is” only because I “am.”
And that is cool as hell.