Friday, January 18

finding some inspiration

I'm finding that this time of the year is the time of the year that I am actively seeking out some inspiration and in that, some motivation.  Maybe it's the charge ahead for a new year or that feeling of clearing out the old, in with the new.  Whatever it is, I've been busy reading about what some other people get up to to formulate some new designs and structure into their processes.

I've been a fan of Ali Edwards for a long time now, and if you're not familiar with her or her work, she's a graphic designer who has a clean and simple approach to her work.  She does a lot of paper work and posts regularly about the projects that she's been doing, both personal and for her business.

I decided again to sign up for her One Little Word year-long workshop again, to remind myself of a regular project and the reflectiveness that this project can provide.  Hopefully it'll also inject a bit of my word back into my day-to-day in the year thirteen.

I also went back and went through the blogging course from elsie & laura at a beautiful mess, which I first mentioned in a post last year about blogs I was (and still am) reading.  In their blogging ecourse, I like their mix of personal experiences and guidelines.

Whilst they proclaim throughout to be no experts (which I think there a lot of us who would decry that they are!), it is refreshing to read about what they find interesting and how they manage their own time.  I am a planner and organiser, but my own ideals don't always flow through to everything that I want them to - I don't post regularly, I don't have a lot of planned or scheduled posts, I don't take enough nor share enough photos, I don't... I don't...   I am trying to be easier on myself with running a  craft business and having an online presence, so I think that reading through these courses and articles help to both re-inspire and to remember that it's okay that I don't do all of that!

Wednesday, January 2

january 2013

I have many reasons to love january: the long holidays, beautiful summer weather, sleeping in, tennis on tv (and in person), the beach, iced coffee, driving with the windows down, freedom and TIME.
I get into the habit every year of making a "holiday" list.  It's not usually a physical list of jobs or words, but it's certainly a physical presence.  There are piles of things to sort, tackle, fix and start all throughout the house that are labelled "holidays".  At the beginning of these big holidays, I usually am too tired to really deal with much of it.  There's a quick cleaning frenzy and then I'm content to look at things for a few days and ignore them.  Three days ago I got my mojo back and started into them all.

The types of things that I leave can be as mundane as sorting paper into the filing cabinet and re-arranging piles in the spare room, but also excitingly, things that are more fulfilling in the creative sense.

I started making new cards which is a great process.  I am making more of some popular designs which sold out at recent markets, but I'm also making a lot of new ones.  I've got a collection of amazing old prints and photographs from encylopaedias and novels which are being made into absolute one-off cards.

Here you can see little piles of cards in various stages.
At the back is a tray filled with cover pieces ready to be put together.
Front left is an example of a vintage illustration, and next to it is an example of some of the popular phrase cards that also use some vintage book paper.

I love sewing paper together as it gives it another texture and design element.

One of the january jobs that I enjoy is trying to plan out the year ahead.
I have work and personal commitments that influence those plans, but as the market dates are announced I put those into the year's schedule, as well as their application opening dates.  I try and spread markets out throughout the year, but a lot of market organisers seem to share the same ideas and there can often be a glut!  I have to travel between 75kms and 300kms to attend markets, so it's not something that I can easily do as many weekends as I would like.

And I also discovered a little while ago that the website I had started to build in 2012 was shut down.
How did that happen???
Well, I have to take a lot of the blame for that - I hadn't done any work on it in a long time, I hadn't even checked it for a long time.  I didn't realise that I was on a limited renewal (not automatic like I requested) and therefore it just ceased to exist.
Now I'm in two minds and whilst I have spent time and money learning how to develop an independent website, I'm clearly not in a position to be able to update and maintain it as should be required.  So it's a loss and a lesson, but I'm happy to spend more time here in blogpost instead.  So hopefully you've noticed a slight change here.  I'll keep tweaking as I find how to do more things, but my main focus will be the content itself, because that's what everyone loves most on a blog (well I do anyway!).