Feel free to get in touch anytime by E-Mailing admin@healingprocessgame.com . Thanks!
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#130. Imitation and Acceptance.
March 1st 15:41, (Tokyo)

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Have you ever had the experience of recording your own voice, only to play it back and realise it doesn't sound as you expect? Have you seen a video of yourself from an angle you couldn't possibly view in reality, only to feel estranged from yourself?

Your first instinct is 'oh, well I can't possibly sound like that, it must be the quality of the microphone', or you cling to the common excuse of 'well the camera adds on 10 pounds'.

The microphone isn't of a bad quality, that is how you really sound, and the camera isn't tricking you - you are just used to looking at yourself in the mirror from a certain angle in a certain way. We live day in and day out, misleading our perceptions of the way we are due to a lack of objectivity. Things always seem clearer from a distance. People who are truly deluded are those who do completely unacceptable things, then criticise others for the exact same behaviour they themselves take part in.

So when it comes to creating music or art for the beginner, imitation of others is the way in for 99% of us. In our head we are a perfect representation of those we are replicating, but once we see ourselves from the outside we realise we are nowhere near the level we think we are portraying. Like an adult looking back on a photo of himself in a fireman's outfit as a child, he doesn't see a fireman, but a childish imitation of someone he looks up to. In these instances, nobody harshly criticises themselves because it's what we expect, and as a natural progression we grow up and fall into whatever profession we fall into. People are used to seeing old photos of themselves, as the camera is the most common tool used for recording these days for most people. More common than the diary, and more common than audio recording.

For many people doing art or music, they get stuck in that phase of thinking that imitation of someone is the correct way to go. mimicking styles and sounds of others. This isn't bad practice. However, in the end. when you play back the song you have written in someone elses style, and are truly able to listen clearly, you will see the lack of originality and if you have any sense about you, you'll realise it's a lame imitation of somebody else. It's like recording a video of yourself playing the bass and hoping to actually see and hear Flea from the Red Hot Chili Peppers in your place. The closest you are going to get is some bad cosplay and a mediocre bassline, because you can't be the original. But once you realise your own sound or the way you look, and really begin to adapt your output to fit what you really can actually do, you will be able to be as original as anyone you admire and progress in your own way.


So what real practical means can we take to help express our individuality? Well for a singer, simply reading from a book and recording your voice, getting used to that voice - and when it comes to vocal performance, notice when you aren't sounding like yourself. It is much easier to sing a note when you aren't also trying to sing it while simultaneously copying someone else. It's like placing a middle-man between you and the note. An unecessary and taxing detour. Record your voice often, appreciate your uniqueness. Listen to those with their own voice. Moondog, Thom Yorke (especially anything post Kid A), Bjork and Morrissey are good examples of singers who aren't trying to channel others while singing. The same goes for Bob Dylan, Hyde of L'arc en Ciel or John Frusciante. Remember often even the 'best singers' don't have the originality or respect of other artists or even the common listener. You need to listen to the most unique to realise you cannot be them, accept their differences and quirks, and especially their flaws then realise it's okay to accept your own too. It could help to listen to live recordings of singer's voices, or watch artists draw in real-time. You can't compare your raw voice or sketches to the final product an artist throws out. You will hate what you've done. Respect your own shortcomings and abilities and do what you can do.


The same principle goes for art and the way you draw too. Look how many styles there are, from fine art, to illustrators such as John Bauer (left below) and those who create basic but admirable work such Ivan Rabuzin(right below). This 'basic' work comes through a long process of practicing, imitation - and ultimately attaining the tools to simply express what you want within the bounds of your ability. The more you explore other styles and your own style, the less you will rely on imitation and tricks, and more on your own true vision and ability. For most of us, mimicking is a form which helps us acquire the skills we need to be original, ironically. However, most would-be artists or performers give up far before they are able to reach the level of ability that allows them to represent their unique thoughts and abilities.


I am stuck in a cycle of imitating others, what can I do?
Simply free yourself of expectations of what you 'should draw like' or what you 'should sound like'. Continuously do it the way you do it, accept your mistakes and quirks and elaborate upon them. Learn instruments or techniques in the 'wrong' way. Ironically you might be a professional violin player who has become a complete copy of your teacher, without an original thought in your head, However, you may be able to take that drive and become a very skilled artist, drawing in your own way if you simply work out your own way of doing things. You have the artistic critic within that you have trained while playing music... so if you constantly draw in your own way, you may actually be able to represent yourself even more effectively on a medium outside the one you are comfortable with. If you want to stick to what you know, that being the violin, for example - you might wonder if theres a reason you are stuck on that one mode of expression, and if you can only express yourself on that instrument, are you really expressing yourself? Or are you purely relying on your mimicking ways? I have found that despite playing the guitar for 15 years, I can express myself equally (or maybe even more uniquely) while drawing, and I have only being trying art seriously for the past 2 years or so. Adapt yourself to something new and see what happens.



Sam Louix

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#129. Something I started long ago
February 28th 20:12, (Tokyo)

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Hey!

I recently came back to a piece that I started a year ago. At that time my ability was a lot lower than it is now and I didn't quite know how to continue. Now, I have finally been able to get it together and look at this piece from another perspective. I don't want to reveal it before it's done so I'll just give you a quick glimpse at it today.





Sam Louix

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#128. Continuing and 'results'?
February 27th 21:11, (Tokyo)

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Creating Healing Process: Tokyo day in and day out has been so far, a strongly relaxing and rewarding experience.

I recently had a conversation with someone close to me (not my wife) who said, 'what if you spend years and years making this game and it never pays off?'. The first thing I would like to raise an issue with this statement is, what is 'paying off'? Monetary gain? Fame and praise? If it's either of the two, my answer is simply 'that doesn't matter'. Why do we need money? So we have freedom to do what we want. You want to buy a fancy car or live in a luxury apartment in a big city? Well, I personally do not want these things, and even if I did want these things, killing myself with stress to attain them would be no way to go about doing it.

What do I want from my life? The freedom to make this game, make music and continue doing so. I am very motivated and fulfilled while doing so. What do I need to do this? Nothing, just time to simply do it. I can make money from freelancing etc. while I spend the majority of my time on this.

'So what if you never gain fame and popularity after all of your efforts?'

Well, that's just what some people would call 'love' I suppose. I have a loving wife and a loving family, so would it not be rude to search for love elsewhere. Now if we're talking about making some kind of mark in history, that can be achieved by anyone who leaves behind art or music. It could be that I become well known after I die, or when I'm 60, due to some retro-lover digging up my game, or my band's music and seeing it in a new light further on down the line. If that happened, sure, it would be great - but it's already out of my hands and none of my business at that point. I have been using insanely obscure and unknown artists's work as inspiration for my game and music, so the spirit of their work goes on and inspires me, and if I can do the same for someone else, that'd be great.

'But what about recognition NOW?'

To what end do I need recognition now? I meet the people I meet, and the people who come to me for advice, or criticise me in my Discord group, or via messages or E-mail due to my current work. That's enough, I can make the most out of these experiences and continue making what I love.

There are people who demand monetary gain who have never achieved anything. I don't feel it is necessary to begin with this mindset of 'making money' when creating something. I learned from my granddad Kitley that you should take time and care with whatever you are doing, and I am doing so. There's no use doing something in a rush anyway, it shows in the final work. I find it quite fruitless to simply demand money from the get-go. As Alan Watts says, money is a way to measure achievement. You don't start building a house only to stop and go 'we haven't got any inches'. Money should be acquired upon something great being done. It is a bi-product of an achievement, like the height of a house or the clarity of a well played note on the violin. If you have monetary gain in mind and try to force these things, the outcome will rarely be desirable. Maybe you can make a quick buck with these tricks, but nobody is going to look back on them fondly in the long run.

So to me, simply living life how you intend to live it, and not putting your main dreams on hold while you detour in a fruiless cash-grab is the best thing you can do. You will see yourself improve dramatically when you are moving out of true curiosity and desire to do what you are doing. That's true happiness.

That's what I think anyway.

Sam Louix

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#127. Dear Mick Karn
February 26th 22:33, (Tokyo)

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Mick,

You encapsulate everything that makes a musician great. Original sound, effortless technique, and confidence with your instrument. You hold the level of prowess that makes you look unlike yourself when you aren't holding that bass. When you play, people stop and listen, and stare in awe at your floating movements across the stage. You bring people happiness with your playing, and you contribute way too much happiness to the world. It is unfair how much you suffered.

You have breathed new life into my work and given me drive time and time again, so thank you.

You can see a lot of what makes me so happy from Mick Karn in this video, watch from 2:50 to the end and listen to his fretless bass mastery if you want a quick fix


Sam Louix

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#126. Hey!
February 25th 21:33, (Tokyo)

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I made the front ot the love hotel a little more grand... it kind of ended up looking like an American movie thetre. I quite like it though!


That's all!

Sam Louix

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#125. The Angry Tobacco Woman
February 24th 22:33, (Tokyo)

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Here's a little more teasing of that level, and some NPC text from the game. You've done something to offend Michiko here... how will you make it up to her :O?


I am going to show you the new update overworld tomorrow! It's slowly growing!

See you then,
Sam Louix

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#124. A New Inspiration!
February 23rd 15:11, (Tokyo)

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I recently asked another artist on Twitter what their banner art was from. They told me it was an artist by the name of Arnold Böcklin. A Swiss painter who focused on symbolysm and romanticism. He inspired a LOT of late-Romantic composers. Check out his wikipedia page if you want to know more.

Several pieces of art stuck out to me, but some pieces such as the one below really struck me as something that would fit in the dream world for Healing Process: Tokyo. While I have never straight out copied someone's work, the type of compositions and ideas used are always useful when trying to fit the story of Healing Process: Tokyo with the level design.


It is very helpful to look at experienced painters to help me work out the sizes and focus points of each area, and discovering different painters and adapting their ideas into my own style is extremely fun. Although I do not consider myself an artist/illustrator, I am beginning to get more free and able to achieve what I want to quickly with art... It's nice. It's like learning to make music all over again, but I have the drive and knowledge I can get something decent done, having succeeded with music. It's very comforting to know I can take on new frontiers and keep improving on different fronts. So, thanks Arnold Böcklin!

Sam Louix

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#123. Haguregumo
February 22nd 20:00, (Tokyo)

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I can't remember if I wrote about this before, I'm not sure if I did - but if I did I am just going to write about it anyway. I recently watched an old anime movie (1982) called Haguregumo, based on a manga that is still running to this day.

It's about a samurai who has quit the samurai lifestyle, as they all had to as Japan was changing. There are obviously parts of his personality I don't agree with, such as the cheating on his wife thing and hitting his kid to teach him a lesson (actually it simply seems to be to train his kid to fight). However, the message of Haguregumo is a great lesson. To float along like a lone cloud, looking at things from a distance and seeing the best course of action from afar. Haguregumo has reached a level of 'Zen', which allows him to act accordingly and come out on top in most every situation. If you are unfamiliar with the term 'ukigumo' it is also worth looking up.

Another part of the anime is of course the art, which I feel is pretty uniquely done, like old Japanese paintings. It's pretty good. They often pan down from above to look down on the characters, while showing autumn leaves on a tree or some kind of traditional sign letting you know what time of the year it is, as below.


If I hadn't already planned my next game after Healing Process: Tokyo, I think I would probably try to emulate something like this (below!) alas, I have planned the next 10 years of my life on Healing Process, then the following game so I will have to adapt it into one of these two in a smaller way.


See you tomorrow :)
Sam Louix

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#122. Speeding Slowly through the Day
February 21st 11:34, (Tokyo)

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Today I had a producive day, simply improving the script and working on the 100+ NPC names and backstories.

I'll post some of the overworld and the continuation of the WIP level art tomorrow.

Are you working on something good? Are you enjoying your day? If the answer to both of those questions is 'yes' you much surely have had a good day. Let's make every day like that.
Sam Louix

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#121. Continued WIP
February 20th 17:51, (Tokyo)

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Here's some progression on the WIP I previously posted.


Sam Louix



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