"Now wait, Kweh!" I hear you ask. "Three years? I thought Neimoidians were a lifelong story for you!" You're absolutely right, I think it goes without saying that Neimoidians and/or Duros have, in one way or another, been there since the beginning, and I've certainly loved them since the first time I even saw Star Wars; however, we're talking an entirely different level of love here.
It was three years ago today that, after a couple of days of Star Wars "attraction," with a pretty heavy emphasis on Neimoidians, I returned to Star Wars, more or less emerged a completely different person, and a die-hard Neimoidian lover. The manner in which I've determined this date may seem somewhat strange, but if you understood my mindset, my mood, my mental state, the supreme level of joy and excitement I felt about it at the time, you would easily see why January 13th is the day I have chosen. Specifically, this was the day on which I drew my first semi-serious attempt at a Neimoidian, and drew Lott Dod.
I think it's fairly obvious that, despite being a science student, art is extremely important to me, and has come to represent quite a lot in both my everyday life and my life as a Star Wars fan. I've never been very confident about my art skills; however, despite that, I'm very happy with the distance I have managed to come since first starting to draw in earnest, even if it's taken far longer than it should have. And, in no small way, I have Neimoidians to thank for that. They gave me the inspiration, the motivation, the drive, and the confidence to keep doing what I do. Even if the outcome falls short of expectations, I know within me that rather than being a frustrating end, it's just another step in the process of improvement. The Neimoidian image allows me to pick myself up, dust myself off, and start anew with my next piece.
Where I began on this day, three years ago, was nothing special, by any means. The picture I produced was awful, and for numerous reasons, I am reluctant to ever show it in public. I believe there are only two people who have actually seen it...unless it got put into the slideshow from FBF podcast. Despite that, the image is almost sacred to me. When my laptop crashed three years ago, I was upset, above all else, of losing that picture for good. Within the squiggly lineart and atrocious anatomy, behind the lazy colouring and ignorance to detail, I see a moment of pure, unadulterated joy. A moment where, at 4am, I was compelled so strongly to draw this picture, rather than sleep, simply because I was afraid to let the image and the inspiration pass. I see a future in that image, too, of how much Neimoidians have come to mean to me in so many different ways, and of all the opportunities I've had simply because I attached my name to them.
Now why, again, am I explaining this date so thoroughly? Because, as well as having chosen it for artistic reasons, there is, actually, another competitor for this anniversary date: January 17th. This was the day that I settled in my head the timeline, back in 2004, when I became a "serious Star Wars fan" at age 13. In 2010, when I realised what was going on, I meticulously kept details and dates of what was going on; I didn't do that in 2004, and I've been kicking myself ever since. On January 17th, 2010, I got all of my old school timetables, looked through all of my old chats and emails, and even went through my old journals. I went every extra step to determine the dates on which certain events occurred, and finally came to a solid conclusion, that I've stuck to ever since. This date is not so much about Neimoidians, but rather about Star Wars as a whole. Since that date, I've determined that my Star Wars Anniversary is December 2; however, I have to take into account January 17 as well, as a second or "serious" Star Wars Anniversary. I think it's actually worth noticing that my Neimoidian Anniversary predates my "serious" Star Wars Anniversary.
And that, to me, speaks volumes.
So, that's my say for today. May there be many, many more anniversaries to come, and may the Force (and Neimoidians) be with us always.
(below are two versions of my Third Neimoidian Anniversary picture, which I completed today)