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This is a weird week for me.

 

Part of a production wrapped up, so a bunch of us had a goodbye dinner. Everyone's going at different days, but of this group I'm one of the two staying. And the other guy doesn't even know if he's staying for very long. People have come and gone before, but this was much more of a friend group breaking up, so it's real sad. Animation is a small enough industry that we'll hopefully see each other again, even if not here.

 

But part of the weirdness is that I'm one of the few people in this industry who gets to be long term anywhere. I'm just integrated directly into the studio and not expected to go anywhere any time soon.

 

Relevantly, today I got called in for an incredibly brief meeting. Basically, to say they're very happy with me and I'm getting a raise immediately. My supervisor had already hinted at both, but it's also nice to be flat out told "you're great, please don't leave".

 

I'm already missing the people who are leaving/haven't left quite yet, but I still have other friends here and hopefully I can make new friend groups when another production rolls in soon. But right now, ambivalence is weird ass thing.

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After about a week and more of lots of small things not going well, my cosplay got delayed, feeling a bit down, when finally the Nihon Matsuri (it is a, let´s say, joint event - both the actual Nihon Matsuri, promoted by the local Japanese community and a anime event, at the same place)one the local events I like most, happened this weekend,  it rained during Saturday... However, Sunday was pretty good day, in the end I wore a outfit and manage to get there on time for the Japanese fashion contest in the part where was the anime event. I had a good chance to meet again a some friends and got some amazing photos. In the end, once back home, I was told that I got second place in the contest and also the cosmaker said the delay was because she had to make a chance the fabric, but this week we would make a test to see how is going.

On other subject, I am still trying to find job/freelance as graphical designer, but without luck, which don´t help me to feel very confident as one - still, I am trying to create new things to put in portfolio and learn new stuff in the mean time. I end up creating a profile on Artstation (where I am posting most of my 3d modelling, illustration and other stuff), which turning well, I mean, compared to Behance, where I got almost zero to a single view in anything I post there, meanwhile, on the few weeks on Artstation, I got a lot more views. Oh, I know I shouldn´t bother about views and other stuff, and no I don´t think the stuff I do is "amazing" or anything, I know I have lot to improve.


That said, Pixiv, still the place where my illustrations got most views and even score rates, and is the site I am enjoying it most (also that pixiv sensei is really helpful) I even became a premium user there.

One really annoying thing is that often on Linkedin, while searching I often found "lots" of job offers that don´t really exist. It is hard to explain, and I don´t know if happen elsewhere, but some other sites keep posting potential job offers, but to see it (they often post as "confidential") you have to log in their website....only to find that the offer don´t really exist or are old offers...

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On other subject, I am still trying to find job/freelance as graphical designer, but without luck, which don´t help me to feel very confident as one - still, I am trying to create new things to put in portfolio and learn new stuff in the mean time. I end up creating a profile on Artstation (where I am posting most of my 3d modelling, illustration and other stuff), which turning well, I mean, compared to Behance, where I got almost zero to a single view in anything post, on the few weeks on Artstation, I got a lot more. Oh, I know I should bother about views and other stuff, and no I don´t think the stuff I do is "amazing" or anything, I know I have lot to improve.

 

If you wanna get focused critique and move your 3d stuff forward, start posting it to Polycount.  Also spend some time looking through their wiki - lots of useful starting points there.

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If you wanna get focused critique and move your 3d stuff forward, start posting it to Polycount.  Also spend some time looking through their wiki - lots of useful starting points there.

 

Oh, I totally forgot about polycount - I remember coming across it, very early one, but didn´t felt confident enough to post anything there and end up forgeting about it. Thanks for the reminder, maybe there I might get some feedback, I am already looking at their wiki.

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So due to a lack of workers and the existing employees taking advantage of the massive job security that gives them (they can just not show up without consequence, we need them), I'm currently running a machine shop/lab meant to have 4 workers by myself for most of most days. I love my job, it pays way better than anything I've done before, but christ am I getting sick of covering everyone else's asses while busting mine.

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After years of having my PC hooked up to my plasma tv, I finally shelled out a few hundred quid on a nice big monitor, and I've had to send it in for repair twice in the first six weeks. First for a vertical line of dead pixels or similar down the entire screen, and now because the brightness flickers up and down, and any contrast between black and other colours turns into a big smudgy mess. I tried it with a different computer and HDMI cable, turned it off and on again etc, with no luck. Just as I was about to spend a day on Deus Ex, too!

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Another school year begins, and my first as a specialist instead of a generalist. It was a good week, met both classes I'll be teaching, and had one heartwarming moment with a little girl who only speaks French in a very English school. She was in tears over her Math "what do you remember from Grade 4" pre-test because she couldn't understand some of the questions, so I crouched down next to her and started explaining everything in French. None of the other grade 5 teachers speak it, and I don't think she realized I did until I started doing so with her. She figured out everything she needed to and was beaming by the end of it. Has spent the last 2 days following me around in the halls chatting about whatever comes into her head because she knows that I will understand her and she seems like she's been kinda starved for someone to talk to. Super cute. I think I made a buddy.

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After years of having my PC hooked up to my plasma tv, I finally shelled out a few hundred quid on a nice big monitor, and I've had to send it in for repair twice in the first six weeks. First for a vertical line of dead pixels or similar down the entire screen, and now because the brightness flickers up and down, and any contrast between black and other colours turns into a big smudgy mess. I tried it with a different computer and HDMI cable, turned it off and on again etc, with no luck. Just as I was about to spend a day on Deus Ex, too!

 

I would ask for my money back and go to a different manufacturer.

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Yeah, I'll do that if it comes back with any issues this time.

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So my boyfriend and I are currently living in a shared flat arrangement with my mum and my sister. We've all lived by ourselves before so we know what its like to manage a place ourselves and we're at a point where all of us are going to move apart next year and start on the next part of our life plans.

Well Ben and I were starting to look for a flat for next year when he (then) I just had the epiphany that we're at a point for the first time where we could just buy a house instead of getting caught in another renting trap.

So we're feeling pretty excited/ambitious as we're starting to check out 1 bedroom apartments.

We're both leaving schooling this/next year and if even one of us gets a starting (out of uni) wage of 40k a year we'll be able to borrow for a place around 275k. Plus with a first home buyer plan we just have to get to 10% of the deposit rather than 20-40 like it normally is.

The big thing though is that with that scheme we're going to be living at the place we choose for at least 7 years because of first home buyers.

So a lot of excitement as we look over the next few months.

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A 275k house on 40k a year wages seems a bit on the high side to me. Google's mortgage calculator says that's $1300 a month.

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A 275k house on 40k a year wages seems a bit on the high side to me. Google's mortgage calculator says that's $1300 a month.

 

Yeah, that isn't inclduing maintenance, increases  in property taxes (depending on the tenant who was there before) and Private Mortagage Insurance (which you will usually need to pay if you opt into the first time lender things). 

 

Just remember everyone is trying to SELL you on that purchase, no matter what your banker and agent say they will absolutely try to get you to buy no matter what. Go into the buying process on the defensive, be picky.

 

Don't use an inspector/lawyer who your agent knows, use a thrid party. It will cost you a few hundred more but at the end of the day you are getting actual feedback about the house and not being sold on the house. 

 

Look up the PIN number for the house and see what tax excemptions are currently on the house, hidden senior freezes/exceptions can come and bite you in the ass when it comes to your monthly payment. 

 

Also, when you find a place you really love introduce yourself to the nieghbors and ask about the neighborhood, there are plenty of quirks that are easily hidden (flooding, etc) that you can find out then.

 

There are plenty of things I wish I knew before I bought my first home a few years ago! 

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Interest will be about 4-5% depending on what we go with. Variable interest starts at 4.35% and fixed term interest is things like 4.65 for sixths months before being reviewed.

$1300 a month is interesting because there are many places where if we rented we'd pay $300 (dirt cheap hovel, or a piece of a nice place, or nice but out of the way) to $550 a week. The place we're at right now with family is $700 p/w and it's a nicely spaced, recently renovated ex-council flat. So renting can feel like burning money.

I have to go right now but Yo's post is pretty interesting and we'll keep that in mind!

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Interest will be about 4-5% depending on what we go with. Variable interest starts at 4.35% and fixed term interest is things like 4.65 for sixths months before being reviewed.

 

$1300 a month is interesting because there are many places where if we rented we'd pay $300 (dirt cheap hovel, or a piece of a nice place, or nice but out of the way) to $550 a week. The place we're at right now with family is $700 p/w and it's a nicely spaced, recently renovated ex-council flat. So renting can feel like burning money.

I have to go right now but Yo's post is pretty interesting and we'll keep that in mind!

 

Oh yeah, I look at the money we're burning on rent sometimes and cringe, but then my whole townhouse complex had to replace the plumbing from the ground up, so not having to pay for that is nice (at least not immediately, I'm sure our rent will go up again next year.)

 

And yes, thanks for that post Yo, I'm more prepared and terrified for when we start our house hunt next year.

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This was an edit but I'll turn it into a larger post.

We also have a couple of secret weapons, hopefully a stacked deck..

Ben's Dad is a banker and while he's usually doing regional farming investments he'll hopefully have the literacy that we'll need to navigate some of the language. His fam will also hopefully help out for a little while (maybe the first year).

Second I have an aunt who recently started sending us some money so we could start a savings account to buy a house with; she's recently bought a house herself and what she'll hopefully continue to give (for a short while at least) would also offset the cost.

Then I have another aunt who is in the wider property game who can offer learned advice. I have a business uncle who i can also get in touch with. Two cousins of mine work for Inland Revenue (IRD is our IRS) so we get cool tax advice hopefully. Finally a cousin of mine has experience as a realtor which should be valuable going in.

Anyway with my aunt giving me a fund to buy already and the cost of renting so high (things in general are expensive in NZ) this feels like something to grab with both hands.

For me especially since my mum has rented since I was two, my dad on and off. Mum's dying in the next few years (reasonable estimate in the next 2-10) and I'm estranged from my Dad so the next year or two is kind of one of the best times to have all my family nearby to get set up and really independant.

She already feels she's failed and done too little for everyone and it'd also be a big win if she dies feeling like we have some certainty in our lives, like we're going somewhere.

I know that last part isnt a reason to get myself saddled with hundreds of thousands in mortgages and enter a somewhat risky venture with my partner of five years (have lived together all 5); which is why we'll hopefully approach this with the right amount of care. It would still be completely amazing if we could accomplish that in time for her to be around for it.

Things like Sleeper tax rises, existing environment issues, maintenance needs, and the importance of an independant opinion are all really good things to keep in mind. The first three of those especially are things I simply wouldn't have the experience to really look for.

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This was an edit but I'll turn it into a larger post.

We also have a couple of secret weapons, hopefully a stacked deck..

Ben's Dad is a banker and while he's usually doing regional farming investments he'll hopefully have the literacy that we'll need to navigate some of the language. His fam will also hopefully help out for a little while (maybe the first year).

Second I have an aunt who recently started sending us some money so we could start a savings account to buy a house with; she's recently bought a house herself and what she'll hopefully continue to give (for a short while at least) would also offset the cost.

Then I have another aunt who is in the wider property game who can offer learned advice. I have a business uncle who i can also get in touch with. Two cousins of mine work for Inland Revenue (IRD is our IRS) so we get cool tax advice hopefully. Finally a cousin of mine has experience as a realtor which should be valuable going in.

Anyway with my aunt giving me a fund to buy already and the cost of renting so high (things in general are expensive in NZ) this feels like something to grab with both hands.

For me especially since my mum has rented since I was two, my dad on and off. Mum's dying in the next few years (reasonable estimate in the next 2-10) and I'm estranged from my Dad so the next year or two is kind of one of the best times to have all my family nearby to get set up and really independant.

She already feels she's failed and done too little for everyone and it'd also be a big win if she dies feeling like we have some certainty in our lives, like we're going somewhere.

I know that last part isnt a reason to get myself saddled with hundreds of thousands in mortgages and enter a somewhat risky venture with my partner of five years (have lived together all 5); which is why we'll hopefully approach this with the right amount of care. It would still be completely amazing if we could accomplish that in time for her to be around for it.

Things like Sleeper tax rises, existing environment issues, maintenance needs, and the importance of an independant opinion are all really good things to keep in mind. The first three of those especially are things I simply wouldn't have the experience to really look for.

 

Yeah, the NZ housing market is a completely different beast, good luck! We have family who have a plot near chirstchurch who has said we can build a  house there when the time comes and I am very happy to not have to try to dip my toe in that market!

 

Sounds like you have things quite under control, it is nice knowing you are investing in yourself/family when you are paying your mortgage and not just burning that cash every month hah. 

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Oh I meant to post this like two months ago but that blood test came back fine. The HIV/AIDS bit just said NEGATIVE and the hep C/B test was in the "come back in 6 months range" but also in the margin of error in my favor. So I'm not too worried about the next test. I also did better getting my blood drawn then I thought I would. If I didn't work someplace why I might get exposed to something without knowing I would consider donating as I believe I'm a universal donor but I'll have to table that for now.

 

In worse news I know have my learners permit which means I know have to learn how to "safely" maneuver what amounts to a giant bullet at dangerously high speeds because I guess we as a species decided that was a good idea at some point? It'll probably be fine.

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Oh I meant to post this like two months ago but that blood test came back fine. The HIV/AIDS bit just said NEGATIVE and the hep C/B test was in the "come back in 6 months range" but also in the margin of error in my favor. So I'm not too worried about the next test. I also did better getting my blood drawn then I thought I would. If I didn't work someplace why I might get exposed to something without knowing I would consider donating as I believe I'm a universal donor but I'll have to table that for now.

 

In worse news I know have my learners permit which means I know have to learn how to "safely" maneuver what amounts to a giant bullet at dangerously high speeds because I guess we as a species decided that was a good idea at some point? It'll probably be fine.

 

Yah on test results!

 

 

On driving, I remain flabbergasted that I came of age at the end of the time when society believed it was still a good idea to let 14-year-olds have a driver's license, and even more insanely, my parents let me buy a sports car when I was 15 (because I had my own money saved up from working on the farm). 

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On driving, I remain flabbergasted that I came of age at the end of the time when society believed it was still a good idea to let 14-year-olds have a driver's license, and even more insanely, my parents let me buy a sports car when I was 15 (because I had my own money saved up from working on the farm). 

Oh dude, that's still totally a thing. I'm only in my early twenties and I got a drivers license at 13 and a car at 14, and I know that's still how it works in South Dakota. It's definitely still an important thing in states with large rural areas, just to get to school in the morning or off the farm for a bit. I started driving a bit just to the store or whatever when I was 11. It's a weird-ass thing.

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Oh dude, that's still totally a thing. I'm only in my early twenties and I got a drivers license at 13 and a car at 14, and I know that's still how it works in South Dakota. It's definitely still an important thing in states with large rural areas, just to get to school in the morning or off the farm for a bit. I started driving a bit just to the store or whatever when I was 11. It's a weird-ass thing.

 

Kansas started backing off the whole 14-year-old thing a few years after I graduated high school.  It's still technically possible for a 14yo to get a permit, but it's waaaay more restricted and harder now, and I think it's far more normal for people to get their learners permit at 16 now. 

 

I totally started driving on roads around 12.  Always in the country, usually helping dad move vehicles around, following him from one field to the next or whatever. 

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