7 January 2018

Careers 07.01.2018

Careers 07.01.2018

Back again. I had such a positive response from my first blog entry, such lovely comments and lots of views for my website, I did enjoy writing it. So much so that I have found myself at my computer beginning to type. I have been thinking for the past few days, since my first post, what I could write about next.  I have not written anything at that length for quite some time. I can just about manage a few lines for an Instagram post or writing down orders at work – that is about as far as my creative writing goes these days so it was refreshing to be writing about my thoughts for a change.

So here we are again!

I am currently sat with blanket and laptop on lap…log burner roaring and Matthew shouting at his Fifa game. It has been a productive weekend, working, cake making (it is in the oven as I type!), food shopping and Pret a Manger going.

I have actually made time for this blog post (which I am quite impressed with), I better start getting to the point.

Careers.

I thought this would be a good topic to start with as work life is quite a huge part of our lives. I wanted to share my views and opinions on the subject, and a bit about my experiences to date.

I use to think your job said a lot about who you were as a person. I had it in my head that if I did not have a high flying career no one would want to know me, I would have nothing to talk about. I use to feel embarrassed if anyone would ask me what I did for a living. Ashamed that I had not really got very far career wise, thinking that others would look down on me. I have discovered in recent years this is so not the case.

I struggled for years since finishing university, graphic design degrees do not really amount to much once you get out into the big wide world…about a million other people are trying to do the exact same thing as you are and there just are not enough jobs to go around. I guess it does depend on if you are shit hot at graphic design.

I have since discovered that I am not.

I chose graphic design as a course, I believed it was the right route for a steady job after my studies. It has not turned out that way unfortunately. There is no real route or career path for a creative. I feel luck has a lot to do with it and right time, right place sort of thing too. I could say I regret going to uni, but I met some great people and I produced some of my best work. I sometimes think I should of done an illustration course but whats done is done, I cannot change the past. I have to move forward with what I have and what I have is illustration. That is my calling in life. It has taken me 27 years on this earth to finally realise it but I now realise it. I always knew art was the only thing for me, it was all that I was ever good at at school, I was never the academic type. Which I am fine with, I love working with my hands and literally I think I could draw almost anything that was asked of me!

So after 5 years of not knowing what the hell I was doing, looking at job after job. Having interview after interview and rejection after rejection. I finally feel like I have an idea of what I am meant to be doing. I went through a real stage of self doubt and I guess you could call it a form of depression. The job hunting bug consumed me in the 5 years after university. It was all I thought about (amongst other things of course) but I felt really worried about it, like I would never make any progress with it. I was desperate for a design job. I felt very insecure and unhappy with myself, I was not enjoying life. It was the classic thing of just existing and not really living.

There is a quote in the film, ‘Little Miss Sunshine’ where Steve Carell’s character says about Marcel Proust which always sticks with me, “French writer. Total loser. Never had a real job. Unrequited love affairs. Gay. Spent 20 years writing a book almost no one reads. But he is also probably one of the greatest writers since Shakespeare. Anyway, he uh…gets to the end of his life, and he looks back and decides all those years he suffered, those were the best years of his life, ’cause they made him who he was. All those years he was happy? You know, total waste. Didn’t learn a thing…” I like to think there is some truth behind those words.

It was not until the summer of 2015 that things started to change for me for the better. I had just got out of a long term relationship, I lost 3 and a half stone in a very short few months and so I was newly single and ready to take on the world…My confidence changed, I felt strangely liberated. I got my first tattoo, learnt to drive and really started living. The job hunt (or anything else…) was not consuming me anymore. It is more important to do what you love than be stuck somewhere which makes you unhappy. I cannot stress that enough. I live by these words. Life really is too short.

I work in a coffee shop, it is not the most glamorous of jobs granted but I am earning, what I really want to focus on now is my artwork. I really want to push myself this year and get certain things done. If I cannot find a job working for someone else I might as well work for myself. I guess what I am trying to say through all these ramblings (and congratulations if you are still with me reading this you, deserve a medal) is that it is okay to struggle and to not quite be where you want to be yet, I believe it is all part of the journey and it will make you into a better person. I will spend this year mostly drawing and creating new works of art. I am not out of the woods yet, far from it in fact. I will have to put in a lot of hard work this year. So if anyone needs me I will be hunched over my desk.

I want to finish this post with something my lovely dad once said to me, “Always draw with purpose” (good old Nige) he was right, and my god do I intend to.

Thanks for reading.

Oh, and by the way. The cake sunk.


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