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10 Years of Afghan Ant (AfghanAnt)

The Internet History of Afghan Ant (AfghanAnt)

“telepathy is an unusual power for a computer to develop”

AfghanAnt Circa 2000

AfghanAnt Circa 2000

This been my personal tag line since forever actually. Why am I telling you this? Because I recently imported all of my old Livejournal post that date back to 2001. That’s right – my blog now has 10 years of my history.

I find it hard to believe I’ve been writing about myself and things I enjoy for ten years but here we are. It actually makes me feel old as hell but I guess I did start blogging when I was 17. Before that I would just troll in AOL chat rooms pretending to be older to see dick shot from middle age men (true story).

Gay Red Ranger Scandal

I’m not sure why I started a Livejournal account (strangevisitor) but I updated it faithful until 2008.  Most of the post were either about a boy I was dating, a boy I liked, or a boy who I recently broke up with and I wanted to kill him. Amidst of these emo post, I was also a member of a notoriously bitch group of posters on the OHNOTHEYDIDNT. Even though I submitted hundreds of stories during my run, none of them can compare to my 2006 post, the notorious “Go, Go Porno Ranger” article.  This story made everyone and their mom shit bricks. Here was the story of a teenage children show star turned desperate “gay-for-pay” performer.  Needless to say, the story eventually went viral and the likes of Perez Hilton and Snopes.com stole reposted my original story. However, I spawned a new urban dictionary term, “red ranger“, and even had a YTMND videos created.

Go Go Porno Ranger

Go Go Porno Ranger

“Artistic Advances”

Besides writing internet trash, I also did a lot of art over the last ten years. I’ve always been in love with art and the internet allowed me to share my drawing with the world.  In 2003, I created my first website dedicated to my artwork (which included Freedom Force skins) – Sequential Neverland.

afghanant's sequential neverland

Sequential Neverland - Afghan Ant

This site meant the world to me. I would spend hours drawing and coloring in Photoshop 6 (which I used until 2007) just so I could post a new image in my gallery.  I remember Christopher (who was my first real love) would stir over my shoulder for hours as I created layer after layer in PS. Christopher would eventually request me to draw an angel and a saint for him to get tattoo’d on him. While he got the angel, he never got the saint tattoo.  We parted way shortly after.

Coeus '05 (Unfinished)

Besides being a part of my personal history, Sequential Neverland was the first thing I did completely from the ground up on the internet and it meant the most to me. I still can’t believe it’s active. I haven’t paid for my shape in like 6 years. If not for this site I don’t think I would have kept up with art as much as I did then. I was a anthropology and history major with no creative outlet so I would just scribe all day long on my notebooks and even test.

Eventually I grew up of the whole anime phase and began doing mixed media digital paintings and refining my pencil work. Partly because of my love of The Renaissance but most because I fell in love with a history professor who exposed me to Michelangelo’s life.Oddly enough this is the same time Dan and I began getting serious.

We had known each other since 2000 and even had sexual encounters but we didn’t really express to each other how much we loved each other before that point. Oddly enough it took me fall feet down into a bunch of garbage cans and getting a concussion for him to admit to me he loved me.

It took me another year to finally admit I loved him back and I haven’t stopped saying it since.

The Power of The (Freedom) Force

Afghan Ant & Ink - Hero Force

Afghan Ant & Ink - Hero Force

During these life altering personal and artistic changes, I dutifully created custom skins for a popular comic book PC games called – Freedom Force.

Feeling I wasn’t nearly as good as other FF skinners, I started my own team site with a new mesher by the name of Ink and a veteran, Courtnall 6 – Hero Force. Hero Force was an instant hit with Freedom Forcers. We were the big three and people could not get enough of our work. I started focusing on developing a style and becoming more active in the community, however my grade started to slip and my website provider was closing so Hero Force was disbanded.

It wasn’t long after that when MikeB7 offered me membership to a new mega-site – Gamma Patrol of Liechtenstein.

Gamma Patrol of Liechtenstein

Gamma Patrol of Liechtenstein

I loved being a part of this group. It was the first time I felt like I had a massive audience who loved my work and wanted to see more and more of it. Too bad it wasn’t so much of my work they loved (as they always confused it with every and anyone else’s work), it was just the toys I was making.  A lowly toy-maker who would be assaulted by demands and told how I did something wrong all the time. It made me sick and honestly I thought I wouldn’t skin again. Then it happened. GPL, like Hero Force, died. It was attacked several times a long with the Freedom Reborn and there just wasn’t anyone who care enough to keep fixing it. I was without a home for my game art once again.

As the community suffered this massive loss, I felt I had to do something to make sure the community did lose interest in the game I had spent so much of my time with didn’t disappear. In secret, I gather two other well-known artists to created a new HeroForce.

HeroForce 2.0

Once again there was a major Freedom Force site that updated regularly and was willing to provide the community with a steady stream of new content. This was another major event for me. It was the third site I’ve ever designed and I really fell in love with my color palette and use of old comic books panels. As many of you know, HeroForce would eventually expanded to include cult favorite, Unko Man and become the home of Ink’s Freedom Force meshes. To this day, HeroForce 3.0 is one of my proudest accomplishment in terms of design and navigation. It’s simple, clean, and user and SEO functional.

First Sketch of Afghan Ant

It all started with a drawing...

Life is so strange. Especially if you are like me and try to capture it in any form you can, whether its written, drawn, or a photograph. I originally wrote this past to encourage people to get to know me a little better via old and often un-intelligible posts but it’s evolved into something so much more.

In my attempt to capture every important moment in my life, I’ve created internet nexus of my thoughts and feelings because I’ve always been so scared I would forget them  – I’m glad I was wrong.

2 Responses

  1. Wow, you’ve got an interesting online history there, AA. Obviously, I should have been more of a “Barbara Walters” when I spotlighted you. Live n’ Learn. 😛

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