Greetings all! Welcome to my second post of 2012 (I know, I have been a bum of a blogger this year) and there's lots to fill you in on. I've actually spent almost as much time away than I have in London so far this year - first there was a two week trip to visit mine and the fiance's family, and then we came back for a scant few days before we set off again for a couple of nights in Krakow, Poland. It's been really wonderful and refreshing to be out of London for a bit, though at this point I'm looking forward to being settled back in my normal routine.
Some of you may remember me tweeting about some exciting work that I was doing, and well, I am finally able to share! Since December I've been doing some step-by-step illustrations for Making Magazine, which have been really challenging in some instances but also very rewarding. You can see the first set of illustrations below, which were to accompany instructions to make a corsage out of a zip. My work has been in two issues so far with a third to come very soon, and of course I'll keep you updated on my progress. So, if you happen to pick up a copy in your local store, keep your eyes peeled for my work in there!
Doing this type of work has been really rewarding, and is definitely something I would like to do more of this year. I feel that 2012 has a good vibe to it, so this year I want to push, push, PUSH my portfolio, send my work out to lots of companies and generally focus on getting it under the noses of the right people. Up until last year I wasn't sure about what I wanted my work to be, or which direction to go in. Now, I feel much more assured of who I am, what my work is about and where I want to go. I'm looking forward to giving 2012 a big kick in the backside!
This year I am aiming to use my downtime more effectively to enjoy some activities besides drawing. The intention is that this will then feed back into my work as an illustrator - after all, just trying to pump out work the whole time can run your creative juices dry! Hopefully having a more balanced life will help to keep me fresh and inspired. Here's a brief list of things I would like to do more of in 2012 and any progress made toward achieving them so far:
1) Travel - The trip to Krakow has been progress on this, and has reawakened my thirst for travel! Airport delays, expenses and having to strip-off at security are all worth it to experience the wonders of exploration. Time to whip out the travel guides and get planning!
2) Read more books - I scarcely had the time to read anything beyond a newspaper article last year, never mind a whole novel! I used to devour books as a kid, so this year I wanted to rediscover that passion. Thus far I have finished one book, and have found it a much better way to wind down of an evening rather than resorting to the TV.
3) Cook - Normally I love to cook, and was known to relish throwing together huge vats of home made soup chock full of nutritious vegetables. Again, last year was so hectic at some points that I allowed it to slide, and got bored of making the same recipes over and over. Just recently I purchased a new cook book - The 30 Minute Cook by Nigel Slater - which has given me some fresh ideas and got me excited about getting back in the kitchen. The first thing I want to make is noodle soup, I love it! Tasty, healthy, satisfying and it seems simple enough to make. All I need now are some ingredients...
4) Bake - I love the idea of baking, but rarely get the time to do so. When you have to cook for yourself, generating more mess and washing up seems sheer folly! However, I would like to overcome this laziness and make at least some simple treats. Home made just tastes better, and seems more rewarding than a chocolate bar from the corner shop.
5) Exercise/outdoor pursuits - yes I know getting fit is a common new-year resolution (since at this point, people are realising how much they've over indulged during the festive season and how good the resulting rolls of flab will look in a bikini (i.e., not good at all)) but I want to focus more on seeing the parks and green spaces around London, and generally having a good time being active outdoors.
6) Photography - As some of you may have seen on my twitter feed, I am looking to acquire a new camera. I've always gotten by with simple compact cameras, but am now finally taking the plunge into digital SLR ownership. I'm don't want to become a photographer in any professional capacity, but rather to use the better quality and flexibility of a high spec camera to capture the world I see around me. I find it really frustrating when I see a gorgeous panorama, but the camera I'm using either can't fit much in the frame, or hardly does the scene justice! So I hope that dipping my toe in this medium will result in a bank of lovely photos to inspire future work.
Obviously there's tons more illustration and work-related things I would like to do this year, but I should probably finish this post now before it gets too long! Thanks for reading, I hope you will join me again next time.