Saturday, December 6, 2014

Intangible Talent

My oldest is a tough act to follow.

She's multi-talented, an A student at college, and able to make everyone around her fall in love with her charm, her sense of humor, and her ability to get excited and talk about any number of topics.

My son is the middle child. He is also very talented, but not in the same way as his big sister. He's doing an internship rather than the college route, which is a hard road in our college oriented community. He's also very shy, and if you are not able to hit on one of his topics of interest, any attempts at conversation will fall flat.

I've noticed how hard it is for others to engage him. Family members won't even notice when they cross the line and shut him down. Many don't make it past the hair. He has a lot of it, and it is like my own, very curly and hard to manage. Since he doesn't want to cut it, it is very high maintenance. I'm still teaching him not to forget to condition it regularly, and even with conditioning, there are days when his hair simply decides to do its own thing. His is thicker than mine (which is pretty thick) so it takes a lot of work to get it to look calm. People treat you different when your hair is not tamed. Even when it is, a young man meets regular questions about when he plans to cut it. My son doesn't do well with snappy comebacks, so he simply stops talking. He's not able to play the social games as well as my oldest. If you are nice to him, if you appreciate him, he will respond in kind. If he thinks you will mock his interests, he withdraws.

Those who are able to move past the hair have trouble moving past his computer time. He's on a lot. Not just for games, but for his artwork. His internship at the Digital Arts Experience has really been great. He's learned so much about the process of creating animation, which is necessary if he wants to do game development. The problem with most of your work being online is that it is hard to whip out at a gathering. My daughter is always knitting or crafting gifts. Her skill is very tangible. Most of our family and friends don't know how talented my son is because it's not something that you can display until it's finished. Unfinished computer animation is just pictures on the screen. 

The people at the DAE appreciate him. They always tell me how helpful and creative he is, how hard he works. You need that support when you are an artist. After a year of designing, modeling, rigging, lighting, and everything else that goes into the process of creating animation, he now has something very cool to show family and friends. I hope you enjoy Steve the Gunnasaurus.


Kez said...

That was really cool - well done to him!

My son is a clone of yours, except substitute video editing for the computer animation. Get him on the right topic - and respect how much he knows - and you can't shut him up, but many find it hard to engage him. He often comes across as rude because he just can't express himself.

I hope they both find the respect and acknowledgement they deserve!

Anonymous said...

Awesome job Chase! very funny - he can shoot and juggle his guns but can't pick up his hat. Love, Aunt Linda

Inner Elder said...

Thank you for putting this on your blog. I love to watch it - always gives me a smile. I know just how frustrated that dino feels! Great job Chase. Chase is so respectful and that is a real gift given the ever present generational challenges. I am proud to be his grandma. He's a real sweetheart, in every way. Love, Mom/Grandma

Paula Vince said...

Yes, we know what you're talking about, as it's the same in our household with Logan and Emma. Critters made of rubber bands, other art projects and cooking creations seem to get more nods of approval than a young man who is simply on the computer lots.
We'll have to keep encouraging our boys to keep their chins up, because they know the extent of what they're achieving (not that they need encouragement about that)
I love Steve the Gunnasaurus, and from what I've seen of Chase's hair in photos you've shared, it's great!

SMT said...

I was reading the part about your son to my son and they are near twins... including the hair. He has learned, though, about how to make snappy comments back and he is the eldest of my 2 children. I just was struck by how similar they are, how similar their interests as well. My son is into stop-motion animation, 3D printing and drawing, and creating video games.

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