Farewell 2014. A mish mash of hectic times, events and work all crammed into 12 months and it has absolutely flown by! I wanted to write a reflective something about the achievements and things that has happened to me this year to kind of ween me into the first full year out of education and on the streets as a badass freelancer/waitress/pet shop girl. On to the New Year and wish me luck!
YAAAAS I'm a free woman! I enjoyed my three years at Winchester School of Art; after all the highs, the lows and aggy rants about briefs or frustrating tutorials, it was all over. I miss the studio atmosphere and spending everyday with my best friends who I miss terribly. I'm proud to say I got a degree I guess, although the most valuable lessons I have learned in education is to work hard to motivate yourself, do what you want and don't ever worry about the stupid things that may seem important at the time but really doesn't make you grow as a person in the long run (this girl annotates for no man!)
I Worked in London!
It may not seem like a big accomplishment to some, but I managed to tick off a very old ambition of mine of working in London as a Designer (being a Hampshire Gal, it's like making it in the BIG CITY O' DREAMS). Although that dream also included living in London, my older and wiser self has realised that that isn't financially possible right now and after having several 'very nearly' full time positions passing me by, I discovered that freelance is something I enjoy and should really have a good go at! The biggest accomplishment for me this year was working on the Children's Design team at Debenhams. Originally a work trial for a job vacancy, it turned into an 8 week Freelance gig which I really enjoyed! I didn't realise before this experience that freelancers are hired by companies and brands, and it's something that I want to continue to pursue. I worked with a great team and met lovely people and learned A LOT about design and developed my skill set 100000x than before.
I Started a Business!
According to HMRC, I'm a self employed power woman who draws stuff in her bedroom hoping to exchange them for money. It's going alright so far! I've re-discovered the fun I have when being creative, which Uni kinda drained out from me towards the end. I've illustrated a book called The Cheeky Cat, designed POS for Pets at Home stores across the South and just sold a load of Christmas Cards for charity. I'm building a portfolio steadily, whilst playing about with making things which I will examine in 2015 and formulate a plan as to what the hell it is I am doing.
I'm Making Connections!
I worked all Summer at places like Penguin Random House Children's, Jennie Maizels and Debenhams meeting lots of lovely people as well as building up a varied professional portfolio. I've had commissions from local businesses in Southampton like Boom Training Ltd, met the guys at Whitehype Studio for a chat about possible work in the future and had interviews with the Graphic Arts team at NHS Solent Hospitals and the Children's Design team at Penguin! I look forward to approaching new clients as well as keeping in touch with the people I've met along the way!
I'm Earning Tips Again!
As well as working at Pets at Home every now and then, I'm back working as a Waitress near home where it all began 6 years ago as a young, hopeful, size-8 16 year old. It's all come full circle as I'm now a 22 year old tired graduate who needs money for nice things and gets to eat a lot of pizza again. The plan is to SAVE SAVE SAVE to invest in my business (and potential travels in 2015/2016!). I can't wait to build up a nice home studio, experiment making and designing products and funding possible commutes to London for future work etc, and the jobs I have and the people I work with make it possible!
That's it I guess! Next job is to make a list of New Years Resolutions to kick start work in 2015! Already breaking several resolutions by typing this up still in bed at 1:15 in the afternoon after a long night binge watching The Walking Dead. Baby steps, Amy.