Tim's Ten Thousand Hours

Hour 2: The Book

The book that stiumalted this project and has reinforced what a difficult task this is was a book called Outliers by Malcom  Gladwell. 

I’d read about the 10,000 hour rule on a number of different channels over the past few years and it seems to be a well established theory in the self improvement space with countless articles on blogs, medium and news outlets referring to the rule. 

The rule essentially details that to become a world class expert in any field it takes around 10,000 hours of deliberate practice to achieve. 

The book details cases such as Bill Gates, Canadian Ice Hockey Pros and Robert Oppenhiemer and how a combination of hard work and external factors lead to their world renowned expertise. It details how they became Outliers in the purest sense of the word.

I finished reading this book last night, and found it to be one of the more enjoyable non-fiction books I’ve read recently. It didn’t suffer from what many books on self improvement and personal awareness books do in that it didn’t get boring around the halfway mark because of the way it used varied examples to reiterate the point.

If anything this book did more to reinforce the idea that I haven’t really dedicated 10,000 hours to anything and I’m at a huge disadvantage by starting now. The majority of people who have had incredible success in their fields started early and potentially even at a time where time was more time readily available to them. With a 35 work week, fitness commitments, friends and family to maintain, finding 10,000 hours to become an expert in animation is going to be hard. Especially when I’m making a blog post valued at 1 hour for a book that took over 12 to read!

That said, I know from other books I’ve read on successful entrepreneurs that a lot of people don’t reach successful careers or become experts until their later 40s or early 50s. The reason people like Bill Gates and Bill Joy are considered to be Outliers is because they are so rare to have achieved at such a young age. 

Where I can make this work is not only by utilising spare time to do something I enjoy but with animation there is a variety of topics and mediums for gaining expertise. Whether that be a book about a famous studio (more on that soon) or an hour with the sketch pad, I have enough at my disposal that I shouldn’t get bored. I’m quite sure even watching films counts! 

With that, here is the latest sketch I’ve drawn. After watching Aladdin the other day I noticed that the characters in this film are not complicated to draw and have very few “lines” that make them up. They still seem to have very individual personalities however and this could be down to the combination of the animation, voice acting and clever drawing techniques to give simple figures such deep characters.

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