Over the last week or so I've grown over 1,000 followers relatively rapidly. Which is a pleasant surprise, as I haven't posted any actual new art in over a month! But this growing followership has made me reflect on some of my past work, and of what sort of projects I'd like to continue working on going forward. Sometimes I feel like I make things far too complicated for myself by seeking out obviously difficult subjects to monetize.
That is to say, shota!
Since 2021 I feel like I've been sticking myself in a rut, limiting so much of my work to shotacon. Which in hindsight, seems almost comically baffling a choice to kick off an art career with focusing so heavily on one of the few things almost every selling platform wants to prohibit. It got to the point where I'd want to draw hot bara characters from games and shows, but racking my brain on how to "shota-fy" them. Absurdity! It's not as though that's the only kind of art people want, or the only thing I enjoy drawing- lately I don't even actually enjoy drawing that stuff, if I'm being perfectly candid!
What's been especially forcing me to reflect on just what kind of work I've been producing, and what sort of audience I want to build, is the rather disturbing DMs and comments I've been receiving increasingly over the last year or so. I've always operated under the opinion that "if it's fiction, then it's fine." And I've trusted that the people that follow me would also abide by that strict boundary, separating fantasy from reality. I'm someone with a demented sense of humor, sometimes pretty shocking, but I draw the line hard on when I see someone lusting over real, actual, present-day child celebrities. Not even the characters they play, but the actors themselves. That's dangerous, upsetting, predatory, and wrong. I've no room in my heart nor time in my day for such creeps. So I'm doing some house cleaning this summer! When my big summer sale in June wraps up, I'm gonna be removing some of my certain older works from my stores that I don't feel are worth defending. I've received no pressure from anyone to do this, and it's entirely my own call. Am I gonna still draw shota in the future? Yeah, probably! I am still working on "Double Dog Dare chapter 2" after all! But I plan on also branching out into some other niches that I've been wanting to explore as well, and I'm going to be more mindful with what sort of shota characters I feel comfortable portraying. I feel like the catalog I've produced so far for 2023 reflects the kind of stuff I'm excited to keep making! This summer, I want to go easy on myself, and that includes not making art so complicated and uncomfortable for myself!