Friday, 26 May 2017

The Huntsman

Wytch-Hunter... Slayer... Headtaker... Beastmaster... Harbinger... Warden of the Deepwyldes...

The common-folk have many names for this wandering slayer of the Wytch-kind... And many have stories they spin, beside the firelight, on the darkest nights...

Yon is nay Sigmarite... But a follower of older Gods yet. Nay not the Dark Ones mind, but v'ry old...

Doth thou see those Ta'alismans he bears? I has't knowledge of these. The argent stag upon his shoulder marks him foremost 'mongst hunters. The Wint'r Wolf about his neck, makes claim of one who is't oathsworn to take the path of war and vengeance.

Howbeit that cannot be possible... The folk who once hath followed those ways art long since passed. Mine own grandfather's father told me these tales when I was but a childe...
- Godwynne Vaulk, Sigmarite Priest

Welcome to the new Meandering Shade blog

Hello and welcome to everyone, long time followers and new visitors, to my little corner of the internet. Where I create and play with figures, putty and paints, or dice, pencils and sheets to try to visualise the dark fantastical things that boil up from the corners of my mind. Welcome one and all to the new look Meandering Shade blog!

It's been quite some time since I actually made use of the blog and the purpose of this post is twofold, first an open letter to my followers who haven't seen me around for a while and what the hell I've been up to. And second it's... Well... Well it's a greeting and a "What the hell am I getting myself into?" post for any new faces... I think... We'll see how it goes...

So... My blog is actually 5 years old or thereabouts at the time of writing this post and I missed the recent  anniversary of it for reasons that will shortly become apparent.

At the end of last year I was really burned out, mentally and creatively. I just stopped blogging. That simple... I had no drive to anything hobby-wise, stopped looking at blogs as often, even on other social media like all the Facebook groups that many of us share, I'd click a like button once in a while, maybe drop a comment even more infrequently than that. but I had become completely disengaged and distant from my favourite hobbies.

Which as some of my longest followers know is particularly bad for me, because my hobbies were my best weapons I had at my disposal for fighting off my depressive episodes. It actually got to the point that I was considering throwing in the towel with my miniature hobbies and RPGs, selling much of it off and deleting the blog permanently.

I wasn't happy with the look of the blog, I didn't particularly like the content I had, everything was too unfocussed and all over the place, I thought I was doing a diservice to my followers with the way I was doing things.

But 2 of my personal friends Jess - Neon Pink Apokalypse and Carl - Roleplay Dwarf recently encouraged and urged me to try out Instagram, thinking that maybe that medium might be better for my needs. And I must admit I liked it, it wasn't everything I needed but the seed of an idea began to form. I started to do little bits of hobby here and there and making quick posts on Instagram and my creative drives started to come back slowly but surely.

I came back to the blog and had a look around it, poking and prodding at the inner workings and the idea germinated. I knew what I wanted to do with my blog. I'd speculated sometime last year that I was considering moving to Wordpress, but after some trial and error I decided I didn't like it, but coming back to Blogger to see some shiny new Wordpress-like themes was nice.

Here it is in a nutshell:

  • I wanted a completely fresh start and I have the tools at hand now to follow my muse. 
  • I want my new posts to have substance... what I mean is I only want to post on here what I REALLY want on here, the sort of thing I'd like to see if I was following me, interesting (hopefully) hobby content without clutter.
  • I'm using Instagram to mostly post my Works in Progress and other hobby content I feel would just be clutter on the main blog. I think the platform is really useful for me in that regard. I can take quick shots of what I'm working on or whatever hobby brain-fart comes my way and quickly post it there. so I got myself a widget all sorted out and you can see it in the sidebar so that my w.i.p. stuff is still visible on the blog, but not cluttering up the place..
  • Which leads to me also wanting to have nicer pictures on the blog. If Instagram is for quick updates, then I want to spend time making better quality posts/pictures for the blog. This is an ongoing process, I'll figure it out as I go.
There you go, it's a short list, but it covers my thoughts and ideas well enough.

So, with those ideas in mind, the first step was fresh start. redesign the look and theme of the blog and delete or reorganise some of the old content.

I may leave much of my older posts much as they were and carry on with the blog following my new vision/guidelines to myself. If I think something really doesn't fit anymore it will either be deleted or moved to an archive (which I've yet to set up).

A quick note for any of you that I follow, I was still having problems following people on Blogger and elsewhere. I've started to use Feedly as my blog reader now, because I can follow any blog no matter the platform and I like that you can organise them into catagories/folders for ease of reading etc. So if it looks like I've stopped following you, I haven't, I'm just following you off-grid as it were.

And that's about it really. Blog updated, creative drive returning, demons fought off. I'm going to be doing a catch-up on a lot of blogs and posts elsewhere that I missed out on over the last few months. Things seem to be improving overall.

The only sour note is that I had been involved in a minor car accident a couple of months ago, I was a passenger, nobody was seriously hurt. I've just had a lot of back problems since then and I've either been too doped up on painkillers, or in too much back pain when they wear off to get on with my hobby projects properly. So things may begin a bit slow around here for a while until I've started physiotherapy and recovered somewhat.

And here we are... We've reached the end and the beginning... I hope that was informative for both old and new faces and I'll see you around. I've already got a new post almost ready to go after this.

Oh one other thing. This is a recent thought. I've been musing over dropping the Stygianheart name and taking on my blog's namesake Meandering Shade as I have had to use it as a username in several other places because I couldn't use my normal one... Too many black hearted people out there apparently...

As ever I'm open to comments and suggestions, anything you want to say, add or advise just drop a line below and I'll respond when I'm able.

Take care.