Archive | July, 2009

One step up and two steps back…

22 Jul

You wanna know what living life to the fullest actually is?

It’s waking up on Monday morning with no complaints.
It’s knowing you always deserve to laugh.
It’s doing what feels right no matter what. Doing what you want regardless of how stupid you look.
Its following your heart and not worrying about the mistakes you made.
Admitting that you’ve changed your mind.
It’s about being yourself, because no one can tell you you’re doing it wrong.

So it begins… A new idea.

Ain’t no easy way.

19 Jul

These are uncertain times in a city like London, but what times are certain, anywhere?

Usually, the fascinating things in life are volatile. In your life, and hopefully mine to some. And I’d endeavour to say that the best things that can happen to us are typically the result of something else completely out of our control. …Whatever lies down the beaten track.
I don’t know about anyone else playing at home, but to me that’s equal parts mysterious, liberating and daunting.

There are loads of challenges ahead, I know. I’ve always known. But, I will promise myself if I keep focused and use the aptitude gained from my passion, everything will eventually be ok. Sounds just about right doesn’t it?
It’s kind of like my own slice of mental paradise, hidden away from the insanity of the rat race.

But let me roll off into a tangent for just a moment.
Because ultimately, my time in London is not a time for rose-tinted glasses. There are real obstacles that have to be overcome sooner rather than later. …I am on a countdown here. There’s a ton of annoying, obtuse stuff that unfortunately was inevitable with the idea of moving to London. That’s ok, I’m happy to try to overcome it, but for now, at the risk of sounding ‘oh so’ cliché, I have to play the rough hand that I’ve been dealt.

To continue my lazy metaphor, I should lay all my cards on the table and tear off my band-aids. I’m here and looking for a comfy chair in design. And this economy sucks. (I know, my timing is sensational).
The right job may not come quickly. Not many people are hiring. I may not even get a job; a degree, talent and experience don’t equal a shiny new job when 300 others are THE competition. Welcome to the wide world of failure.

One of the most important bits of knowledge I have developed from my learning so far is that failure cannot be driven out of life, especially in anyone’s creative life. Failure is really ok. In fact, I’ve come to expect it. Failure is how we learn to get better. And if anyone is not in this profession to learn and to get better, then go home. There are too many designers here as it is.

More than anything for myself, the best boat that will weather this big London storm is passion. Passion trumps all other traits mentioned above, because I say so. And I’m writing this.
Why you ask? Because it has resilience and determination. Being passionate, I will not turn my back on the thing that I love and dream about. I will make it through. Regardless of what loans I owe to who, how much cash is in my pockets or even what I eat for dinner every night.
I am possibly part of a small group of people left on this planet that not only remembers how to make stuff, but actually considers it a part of my well-being and my life. Yeah, on occasion I eat, sleep and breathe design. If your part of this group, you’ll get it.

Designers are ‘idea people’, but our effectiveness is based on the making of those ideas and getting them (or ourselves) out there. There is no right or wrong time to combat any of this economy.
Passion like the person you are, needs to breathe. Its time to roll up my sleeves and get to work. …Wherever I land next.


Knocking on doors

6 Jul

My door to london?

I just want *something*.  That special something other than what I have exactly at hand. I can almost see it from the corner of my eye, but it’s feeling like a peripheral delusion at the moment.

If I ever just stopped to look around and see that everything I ever needed was right here, right now, I would never really get anywhere. I sure as hell wouldn’t be in London.
I constantly fight myself with ‘what to do with my life’, and it’s silly really, because what I’m doing with my life *is* simply searching. I know deep down what I want and I’m chasing it. I know it doesn’t happen overnight.

Sometimes it feels like the harder I search though, the tighter everything gets, the more locked and sealed all the ‘windows’ are – like some over complicated sailing knot called The Fisherman’s Eye (don’t run off to Wikipedia now, I made that up). But it seems the harder I try the less I get there.

But where is there?

I’ve been a graphic designer since 2004. And I’ve been fighting for it, for just as long.
Fighting to find the perfect job, the perfect ideas, against the digital world (as many of you know) and fighting myself on occasion too.

There is something in all this uplift and confrontation – all this bitching and moaning (that I am currently pursuing quite well), that actually makes me *feel* alive.

Known fact. It is harder than it looks… Commitment.
A commitment to working on my life and to sticking with something when the going gets rough in this new place.
C O M M I T M E N T. Bah… How boring.  Doesn’t commitment mean same old, same old? Here it comes… BOREDOM.

So what am I afraid of? I fear boredom, of not having anything to do, of finding myself at a loss, of being lost within myself, of disconnecting, of losing drive and soul for it all. Although I know it wont happen like that.
So far the fighting and finding – is far to strong-winded and ‘loved up’ to let anything stand in the way.

Which draws me to a quote that’s sort of moved me this week, from a book called The Artist’s Way.

“We say we are scared by failure, but what frightens us more is the possibility of success.”
– Julia Cameron

I can be a little terrified of the critics who will tell me I don’t fit the ideal. Of the big time professional agencies and the creative director of ‘X’ company that receives my folio and just doesn’t get back. Especially here in a city of many closed doors. Well, I no longer want to be afraid.

So you out there requesting applications, when you get to work in the morning, coffee in hard and morning traffic on your mind, check your inbox with a little love.

The rest of you,  …cross your fingers for me?