What lives we mortals live. We awake every morning to face another barrage of choices, some in our control, many not, ones that have led us up to this current moment on this current day. For me, artist Steve Rude, it's usually about listening to the strong instincts that have guided me throughout my 64 years. In this current world where our inner Alice has thrown many into a maelstrom of opposing sensibilities, it's nice to know that a respite of sanity lies within the small island we call "fandom".
The people within the fandom of Nexus for instance. There is a quality about such people that I've noticed for some time--things such as...
1. Above average intelligence.
2. Above average sensitivity.
3. Ones who want more out of life than status quo comfort.
When ordering commissions for example, I'll sit down at the board, move aside the work I'm currently doing, most likely the next installment of Nexus, and go about producing a simple illustration in line or color, sometimes even a full-blown painted illustration, hoping it might put a smile on their face. These fans, rich or poor, have made notable financial sacrifices to attain one, often waiting an undue amount of time for their delivery. Does that alone indicate intelligence and sensitivity?
No. It's the often long and unusually heartfelt letters and e-mails that accompany these requests. All of you are counting on me to deliver.
Another unusual, unexpected thing I never saw coming. With the upcoming release of The Coming of Gourmando trade paperback and Artist Edition, unanticipated things have appeared as I sit at the drawing board, writing and drawing these latest exploits of Nexus. Being new to writing--a duty I always hoped to dodge, but now forced into, I feel I've finally arrived at a full circle sense of accomplishment. Just as the great Jack Kirby came to unveil his foremost life's insights into his 1970's New Gods books, and with the usual outlets of Marvel and DC in the throes of creative discombobulation, many still-vital creators are asking themselves where to go from here. What's next?
For me it's simple. Keep moving forward, trust my instincts, and produce the work. Produce and keep producing. Since the time factor of a 24-hour day doesn't seem to be negotiable, all we have to do is use it as wisely as human intelligence can. One passed, it can't be retrieved.
And don't forget to check out the ongoing and stellar efforts of Mighty Mike Baron, my lifelong and most beloved partner, the true creator of Nexus. For that alone, I owe him much.
Always forward, and to the future,
Rude the Dude