Articles · Misc · Uncategorized

Space alien- on loosing your sense of purpose+direction

30/07/2018- This post was written two years ago when I was working before uni and I thought that this would be interesting to post now, at age 20 when I have just completed my first year of university studying illustration and I am about to start the second year in September. It’s a bittersweet post overall because I was so low then, when  I wrote this and now I am studying something I love and I’m much happier in comparison. I haven’t edited this at all so its more of a diary entry than a blog post so excuse some of the phrasing and words.

Year 7. I had a very clear path that I was going to follow. College, University, Designer.

That path is still evident now at age 18, however I have discovered that one job is not enough for me. I have way too many interests, all of which I want to persevere with. Maybe not all as a major profession but there is no way I’m letting them fall through the cracks all the same. With all these interests, one can’t help but wonder if the path that I’m following is the right one.

Said path has taken a pit stop at the moment, as university is expensive af and I don’t have a lot of money (she says as a £29 pound jumper is being shipped tomorrow.) so a year long apprenticeship seemed like a good idea. Which it still is I think. By working in admin for a year I have a fall back plan if things go to shit creatively (a girl gotta eat) and by working for one company for 1 year shows to employers that I am committed and experienced.

However, part of me does wish that I hadn’t. Working in admin is hard. Watching your friends have fun without you is somewhat harder. Part of me feels like I’m missing out on the fun even though it’s still going to be there next year. Not to mention repetitive spreadsheet typing is s o u l  d e s t r o y i n g.

Admin has it’s pros- experience and tech savvy skills. However, 3 months in and I’m counting down until my contract ends. Not because the job is shit, on the contrary it is pretty good. Nice colleagues, no dress code, not having to stand up all day and smile constantly…it’s just not where I want to be.

It is the exact feeling I had towards the end of college, where everything seems too much and I just want to curl up and cry all day (admittedly, I have done this a la mental breakdown in the car on the way to work because I really can’t phone clients). Work is boring but what makes it worse is being so close to the next ‘chapter’ but unable to read it.

Last month undoubtedly was the worst ever. I woke up sad, I went to work sad, I left sad. Everything dragged and a two tonne weight was sat on my chest at all times. It took all my energy to get into work let alone function like a normal human being and talk. 9-5:30 felt like 6am-11pm and I counted down seconds like hours. Nothing was keeping me motivated.

Seizing the few days I felt happy helped a lot because I slowly worked on my hobbies and using them as an incentive.  I flooded my social media with artists and creators whose motivation rubbed off on me and I started inktober. Giving myself a sense of purpose and status motivated me to use my evenings and breaks in a creative way which mentally was a distraction to my job. It made me feel like I was working towards something great and slowly my ideas started to come back.

In terms of what I want to do, I’m still confused. There’s so much on my list of goals which I can’t even bring myself to write down, but by slowly rekindling my creativity which washed away with the tide, I feel like I’m a step towards achieving them all at a later date.

 

education · tips

Sketchbook tips

As a textiles student myself, and previously an art student too, I know exactly how it feels to be running on a deadline and running low on ideas. It sucks, so I’ve compiled a list of tips to help you get out of the artists’ block and finish your pages before your deadline.gcse textiles sketchbook

  Know what you need to do!
I find that making a list of the things you need to do helps organize my thoughts and it’s pretty satisfying to tick/cross it off when your done! Post-it notes are also handy, especially when it comes to the editing and adding stage. When we were finishing out textiles GCSE coursework folders, our teacher would have post it notes for each page stating what we needed to add in or correct. It seriously helps a lot and is a bit less overwhelming than a list as you can take it one page at a time.
  Know when you need to do it by!
If you know when your next deadline is, you can avoid leaving it all to the last minute and focus on making your pages look carefully thought through and put together, not rushed and carelessly done. You can loose marks if your page looks like you’ve thrown it together aimlessly.
  Make the pages flow!
Especially for the pages which lay next to each other. If you have one page in bright pink and the next in yellow, it won’t look like your thinking about the layout and the project as a whole. Make sure the pages compliment each other and show progression through the project.
  Cut, tear and re-size!
(NOTE: This probably doesn’t apply to GCSE, as usually you work in A3 folders for textiles, and as for art, I’m not sure at all.)
When we started out first project in textiles around 6 weeks ago, out teacher told us to ‘cut into the pages and change the size!’ Needless to say, we were horrified! Why would you do that?! Towards the start of our next project all of us had added pages in, cut them down, and…completely ripped out a few which we got irritated with. It’s best to check with your teacher/lecturer before you do this. Your also told not to rip pages out (“you can work over them and make them better”) but sometimes….its needed.
 Inspiration!
If you really have no clue how to lay out your pages, then search online for examples to inspire you. Here are some of the websites that I use;
 
Textiles Arts (I haven’t actually used this yet, but it looks helpful and it was on the main page for my college)
 
Design Instruct (These sketchbooks are more personal than course work books so there aren’t notes and stuff on the pages, but they drift from the standard layouts so it might help to look at them for inspiration)
  
Pinterest (Pinterest is amazingly good at creating mood boards to collect inspirational images, I practically live on here. If you like it, feel free to stop by my page and follow me, or check out my sketchbook inspiration board!)
Tumblr (Another place to find awesome sketchbook ideas, which I am also on, follow me here if you’d like 😉 )
Image result for textile sketchbook pages
Side tips:
  • Colour schemes work well and make your work look aesthetically pleasing
  • Texture can help with bringing a background to life.
  • Play around with positioning your work, try putting it in a corner, at the bottom, ext.
  • Add your own drawings onto the page to explore your samples.
  • Sometimes time away from your work will help you return with a fresh outlook, but don’t procrastinate!