It would be a very long post, so I'll talk about this sometime when I do a drawstream again. But long story short, I've come to appreciate doing art as a kind of gardening and a piece of art as a kind of garden -- a more modest but richer view than I would have accepted year ago, but not totally different. There's a lot more to be said about the nature of that garden, but I'll save it for the stream.
By the way, working on Vampire Bride and Algis in particular (the gardening witch) has sharpened some of my thoughts on this, funnily enough.
I suppose I could use one of those print-on-demand services again. I'll give a shout on twitter if it ever happens.
Dammit... good idea...
I bet some day he'll appear out of the blue with some rough headpats, candy from a faraway land, and some interesting smells and stories.
Perhaps he has heard the call of another herd... or the at last taken his place in the witch caves and become a full apostle. The apostles are mysterious beings after all and often appear or disappear unexpectedly...
DEFECTIVEHORN APOSTLE NO
Chasing your former self is a classic mistake. When you are a young man you will produce a young man's work with a young man's problems. As you become an old man you must work as an old man, produce as an old man, and of course you will have have an old man's problems... one of which is chasing his younger self. The way over it is to remember that there is a season for all things and that plant and reap wisely, with what time and season are available to you.
You'll notice that I've stopped updating Tomoyo42's Room. It's very much an younger man's work (which I love) but I can't make that kind of comic anymore (except in pale imitation -- in a "HOW DO YOU DO FELLOW KIDS" kinda way). Instead I'm focusing on works that make sense to me now. Part of the reason this is possible for me is that I am largely focused on using my art as a tool for working out ideas about problems that seem pertinent now, making out temporary answers or portraits of things as they seem to me, now, in this season. It is a sort of logbook rather than an attempt to reach out and touch something eternal and unchanging which, if it existed, would be the measuring stick against which all creations would be measured and would reduce every work to a measure of success of failure to conform to that eternal something. Maybe it's massive cope, but I don't think the world is that kind of thing (at least anymore). But coming to this point may just be where I happened to have ended up while picking away at my art all these years. What I hope for you is this: that your journey will interesting and as worthwhile for you, whichever way you choose to go. And I can tell you from my own experience: even when you leave that young man's spark behind, there is plenty on the other side. A surprisingly plenty. Consider it one of nature's small graces that what we leave behind can become a platform to propel us with equal and opposite force.
If it's medical then medicine may help -- but mostly I would recommend lifting/exercise, experiencing new things, and actually FORCING yourself to take a break from drawing. Why? Because if you're drawing from passion (as opposed to obligation or discipline) overexposure and adaptation has an outsize effect on your productive output. Imagine a doujin artist that can only draw when HORNY but chooses to constantly get immersed 24/7 with the hardest and lewdest of hardcore porn. Well, this doujin artist would quickly adapt the the prevailing environment and lose the spark. Of course normal biological development plays a strong part as well -- our imagined doujin artist can't be a horny teenager forever, so probably has to move on to more psychological and situation based works, perhaps even taking an intellectual bend and exploring more dimensions of the erotic/sensuous/taboo/etc. The point here is that you must work to do your best with what you are and the season that is available to you.
As a wise man once said...
YOU FIGHT LIKE A YOUNGER MAN, WITH NOTHING HELD BACK... ADMIRABLE, BUT MISTAKEN!!!
That definitely happens from time to time. As any journey goes, there are moments where the land is easy to cross and moments where it is arduous. As always, what to keep in mind is what lies ahead, what lies behind, what other lands there might be to travel, and what lands are reachable with what you have on hand now (and what you might pick up vs lose in the future). There's also the chance of unpredictable events (weather, etc.) as well as the unknown unknowns... but all you can do is behave rationally (all things reasonably considered). But what you should keep in mind is that this is normal ... after all there MUST be lowest points somewhere, and until you hit the global low you may encounter many times where things are worse than they ever were before.
Good luck, and merry Christmas, defectivehorn apostle!