I have no idea how it came to be like this but the computer that I've used proudly for 8 whole years suddenly froze in the middle of a typical internet session, forcing me to do a soft reset. When I turned the computer on, to my utter shock, I was greeted to a "no" symbol.
Turns out the hard drive decided to fail randomly on me and I was scrambling around trying to figure out if it did indeed fail or if certain parts of the disk were still safe, and no, it was busted. And I had not backed anything up for it (ironic considering how much I like to preserve things like old games) so a restore through Time Machine wouldn't cut it. A friend of my father's even stopped by to further investigate the computer, realizing that the disk drive could not be read by the computer despite it otherwise seemingly being functional.
So after some afternoon errands I took the computer to a nearby Best Buy and they refused to do anything related to touching the innards of the machine, so I then took the computer to a not-so nearby fella that had made my personalized Windows 8 five years ago. He took apart the machine no problem and tested the hard drive. This was how I knew the issue was a failing hard drive and... somehow it had been slowly dying over the past several years only for me not to have realized it and now it was to the point where it couldn't realistically run. The guy said I could have the hard drive mailed out to a specialist group that was based around getting the contents out of dead drives and have had a 99.99% success rate, so I took the plunge and let him mail out the nonfunctional drive as well as improve some of the internal specs of my 2012 model iMac for the low low price of 600 dollars.
The bad news was it's going to take them around two weeks to complete the data extraction, including the 1.5 TB's worth of files, images, and music. In other words that means if the data can be extracted, if at all, I'm going to be forced to wait till the end of this month before I can resume any of my big projects, most of which is more content for SRB2Kart. I did try to jump back into regular artwork lately but my attempt to work with the pose/posture I decided on for Ptolema wasn't going to cut it, so when I do get my Mac back (heh.) Ptolema's pose will be further refined until I get something fluid and dynamic while also not being far, far out of my league (then again she's in skintight but I do have some ideas to make her outfit more interesting).
If the drive can't be recovered then I'll be spending quite a lot of time trying to build everything up back to where I was and I don't know how easy or hard it would be considering nothing I was working on was archived properly barring the stuff I shared over the many Discord channels I'm in.
As a form of last ditch-effort I threw Photoshop onto my PC. It may not do me that good until I have access to my files due to the different form factor and having to reconfigure everything but at least it's an option for doodling or sketching and maybe some other minor content. As for now I'd rather wait until I know I can continue working on my main projects before I start tinkering with stuff on my PC (besides I feel burnt out from constantly making kart racers for several months straight) but maybe I'll make something interesting if I'm bored enough.