I did it! I finally finished "Becoming a Better Artist", an online course that used to be run out of CG Workshops.
It took me a while, but holy cow it was worth it. It was the most informative and challenging art course I've ever done, covering all the technical aspects of composition, colour, lighting and textures (plus a lot of other stuff). The teacher, Rob Chang, is a super awesome dude who continued to give feedback to his students long after the course was over. Thank you so much, Rob.
I do still need to practise some things, but I know what I need to practise and how. I feel like I'm at the threshold again, ready to embark on a new adventure. I pushed aside my other projects to focus on this course, and now that it's done, I can focus my efforts elsewhere.
Anyhoooo, behold my final picture: two awkward monsters on a first date that is going horribly wrong.