Hey everyone! As I’ve slowly been making some changes, I wanted to give formal notice of them. They’re kind of major, so I appreciate you reading this long but important post.
Even if you’ve already read this on FA, please note that this post has been greatly revised and expanded, so there’ll be more info for you if you read it again here.
🌈 BEFORE YOU READ 🌈
The most important things to keep in mind are: I am in no way disappearing, and you shouldn't expect my artistic output to decrease, either! What I draw WILL change, however, and it will make me happier. 😊 I am also making my withdrawal from the community a little more formal, but in practical terms, I had already withdrawn. I am not really spending most of my time in furry spaces anymore. My Patreon isn't closing, my Telegram group isn't closing, my FA account won't be deleted and I'll still post art to it. So really: the biggest change is that I am no longer accepting commissions. These changes are all for my personal fulfillment. I hope you can be happy for me, and not make me feel bad. I gave the majority of my time, life and output to the community for twelve long years, and I want to move on to other things, other hobbies, and other endeavors.
❌ COMMISSIONS ARE PERMANENTLY CLOSED ❌
Requests are also closed (and always have been), while trades are for close friends only (but I am not available for those for a while, regardless). I will eventually reopen trades and collaborations.
Any commissions that have been paid for, will be completed as normal, and my Trello remains available for viewing. However, I have removed all commission information from my website/socials/online galleries/etc.
👑 MY PATREON WILL REMAIN OPEN 👑
I have no plans to close or make changes to my Patreon! It will remain the only way to reliably get art for me in the form of freebies and YCHs. Indeed, if you’re a Patreon supporter, I am basically begging you to not cancel your pledge for a couple of months if you are able to maintain it without hardship. My hope is to find a job and clear my queue in the space of two months, but if I lose the $130-ish I get from Patreon, doing that may get much harder without accepting any new commission work. 😓
(With that said, I also don’t want anyone to get into undue financial difficulty, so if you need to cancel I understand and will manage somehow.)
Working on my Patreon pieces, which are artistic freedom, still brings me a lot of joy. I will stop offering the rewards the moment that feeling of joy goes away. So please know, if you’re a supporter, that if the tiers are still up, it means that working on that art is making me happy. It is not a burden in any way.
With that said: please do not try to get non-artistic freedom commissions using your Patreon rewards, by ignoring this fact and asking me to include details that would normally require a normal commission slot. There are no exceptions.
I have decided to take this more drastic decision of announcing closure and removing all commission info (rates, terms, etc) because I’ve kinda wanted to go back to job seeking and no longer take commissions, but either by temptation or necessity, I keep taking commissions –again and again– despite the fact that I’ve tried this before.
So I am forcing my own hand here, because other than Patreon (which I still find fun and fulfilling) I just don’t want to do this anymore, and without such drastic action, I kinda lack the discipline to pull the plug on my business of so many years.
It’s true that at my last job, little as it lasted, I was very upset about not getting to draw all day. Like my husband said, what I really need to find is a part-time job, or even temporary work. I don’t really have a need to work all the time, I am very fortunate in that regard. I just need to save money for certain events from time to time and make a little side money to help my mom.
🐾 MY PLACE IN THE FANDOM 🐾
🙅♀️ I AM NO LONGER ATTENDING FURRY CONS 🙅♀️
Every once in a while, friends still ask me “Are you attending so-and-so con?” And while I’ve mostly been unable to due to other travel plans or monetary reasons for about three years now, the truth is… I haven’t been terrible bummed about it.
I have come to the realization that my desire to attend furry conventions is simply not going to return; in fact, it wanes more with every passing month and year. It’s no longer my scene, I have no interest. I’d rather work towards visits to specific friends when I am able and attend other events and conventions that aren’t furry-related.
We may cross paths at other cons! Anime cons, science-fiction cons… who knows! But I no longer plan to attend any furry conventions.
💟 OTHER CHANGES THAT I HAVE MADE 💟
I’ve deleted my Littlefur Mastodon account (I still have one on Mastodon.art).
My FA watch list has gone down from almost 2000 to a trim 160 (yes, really!) I went through every single person that I was watching and went down to that few. This is because I don’t plan to visit the site as often, and when I do, I don’t want to miss out on the stuff my close friends and favorite artists have posted. I did the same in other places, like cohost.
I unwatched people because they posted topics I either wasn’t interested in, or actively put off by, because they had been inactive for years/deactivated/passed away, or because we weren’t close any longer. Every rule I used to trim my list had one or a few exceptions, but I did unwatch people I really care about because I no longer wanted to see more extreme sort of fetish content, so please don’t take an unwatch as it meaning we are no longer friends, this is not the case AT ALL.
💭 INTROSPECTIVE 💭
None of this is new; nor is it my first attempt at this life change. But it is the first time that I’ve used a bit of a scorched earth method to go about it.
You might say “you’ve tried this before” and yes –I have. But never taking all my commission info down in this way. It was a huge amount of work, because my commission offerings were intertwined with my entire online presence and dozens of pages on my site and social media. I had to fix dozens of broken links. It was a BIG job.
I have been gradually taking bigger and bigger steps back from the fandom over time: first, from our specific “niche”, then, from the fandom as a whole. It has been increasingly becoming a negative force in my life over the last few years, and a place where everyone is seemingly engaged in upsetting discourse or sharing of kinks that I have no interest in, which is pretty alienating at times.
I have tried to maintain a presence in certain spaces where I’ve long felt that I no longer fit in, mostly because I have friends and loved ones in those spaces still. But I don’t wanna force myself to be in them anymore. Hopefully the friendships can be maintained outside of that. Otherwise, it would be a real bummer.
Moreover, at some point long ago I stopped calling myself a furry. I slowly removed that tag from all my art. I’m not sure when that happened, because it was gradual, but it did. It isn’t a label that I feel fits me today. It’s just not me anymore. No community label does anymore, but furry actually feels alienating to me now.
I wanted a simple way to convey this last part without sounding emotional or upset, because I am neither: my interests simply keep pushing me to other areas. It’s been a fun twelve years, but I want to see what else my artistic future can hold.
You’re going to see a great uptick of personal work this year, and once I finish with the current draft (which has seen more progress these last three months than in the last three years) you’re going to be seeing a barrage of illustrated book chapters being posted to my site. I hope you’ll look forward to that.
When I came into the furry fandom, there was a big empty hole in my life. For twelve years, that hole was filled by the community, a large net of furry friends, and furry fandom activities, online and offline. I gave the community my all: twelve years of most of my artistic output. I feel that I’ve received a lot in return as well, but also that it has somewhat run its course in my life. And so, I find myself with a sort of emptiness again.
But that emptiness doesn’t upset me. Instead, I’m looking forward to finding a new community, or two. I want to delve more into paleontology and I want to attend science-fiction conventions. This year, I’ve filled my time with reading, scrapbooking, puzzle-building, gaming, walking, and other fun and fulfilling activities. It’s been wonderful –I can’t wait for more!
🌈 PARTING THOUGHTS 🌈
I’d like to close with this: at some point in the next two months, you’ll probably see me fret, second-guess myself, worry about money, have trouble adjusting, etc. Please give me support (as in, cheer me on) rather than I-told-you-so’s. It’s gonna be a big change for me, but I’m going to give it my all.