Last year wrote a (some would say wildly over ambitious) list of 21 goals which I wanted to achieve in the following year. Some of the goals I did actually achieve, some (for example, "exercise more") I changed my mind about and some I just plain forgot about. I have decided not to do the same this year for a few reasons. Firstly, “50 Things Whilst I’m 50” would just be ridiculous so I may as well stop it before it goes that far. Secondly, the year before I turned 21 wasn’t my best (hence the many, many goals) but this year has been a pretty good one to be honest so I don't really have an overwhelming amount I feel I need to change and don’t want to write a long list just for the #content.
I do still have goals for the year to come but I thought I would do things a bit differently and also celebrate some of the things which happened in the last 12 months this time. Let’s start with the highlights...
Living in Barcelona
The biggest and one of the best things I did in my year as a 21 year old was live in Barcelona for 2 months. I experienced a whole new culture, ate delicious food, saw countless beautiful things and met a group of amazing new friends. You can read about my highlights here and here and all about how it helped my creativity here but in short it was a truly amazing experience that I will always remember and be insanely grateful that I got to do.
Travelling around France
Just like my time in Spain, my journey around France was amazingand you can read more about here. Different from Spain, I had actually visited France before but not any of the parts we went to this time. I have been lucky never to have visited a part of France I didn't love and if I had to choose a country to move to now it would definitely be France. The cheese and bread alone are good enough reasons to uproot your life in my opinion.
Getting in to art school
On the 31st of March (the first night of our French adventure), I found out I had been accepted to go and study Illustration at Duncan of Jordanstone in Dundee. I was quite convinced I wasn't going to get in (I had applied before to university and my interview this time hadn't gone exactly to plan - more on that in another blog post) so I was surprised and delighted when I found out I had. The excitement (and some nerves) has only grown since then and I start in a just few weeks time!
Rejoining team Inkygoodness
Inkygoodness, if you didn't know, is a graphic arts blog which was also my original blog home. Between the Summer of 2014 and early 2016 I wrote all sorts for their wonderful site before leaving and setting up this site. The Inkygoodness blog recently relaunched with fancy new website and lots of exciting new content including my Follow Friday column. I’ll say more later but let’s just say we have many more big inky plans which I am very excited for!
Getting my writing in print
One of the goals I did achieve from my 21 item long list was to get my writing in print. I wrote a little article for the Spring/ Summer 2017 issue of 91 Magazine and seeing my name in print was pretty thrilling. I am hoping to do more writing for print publications soon too.
Blogging about my own design work
This is a highlight which I kind of wish had come much earlier in the year. For many reason I didn't have the creative confidence to share my own work properly online until very recently. I have started now (read my portfolio tour here) and kind of love it so will be doing more very soon.
My Papergang Series
This one perhaps isn’t equal to say my Barcelona adventures but in terms of improving my skills as a blogger, my Papergang unboxings have been key. I am finally happy with my photography (colourful borders are now my thing) and have had some lovely feedback on the series which is always encouraging.
Seeing all my friends graduate
Finally, my last (and least self-obsessed) highlight has been seeing all of my wonderfully talented creative friends graduate. You read my list of 14 graduates to follow (half of whom I know in real life) here. Having my real life and blog life overlap was kind of surreal when writing that post but I had to shout about how amazing their work is and I can’t wait to blog more about it all in future!
Of course, I do still have some goals but there are significantly less than last year which I think is a positive sign…
As I start at art school in a fortnight and have other exciting projects lined up, it’s safe to say I will be pretty busy over the next few months but I am determined to keep blogging at least twice a week on here too. One great thing from this year has been that I finally feel like I am creating unique content for the blog and I have so many new ideas that I have no intention of waiting until next Summer to make a reality.
Write for new places
This was on last years list and I achieved it and it was great so I’m popping it back on again. I love writing for this blog and for places I have contributed to before but it's a whole different type of excitement to become part of something new and work with new creatives. I have a long list of places I would love to write for and ticking a couple off over the next few months would be nice.
Give art school my all
Whilst my other goals would be nice, art school obviously has to take priority. So many people I have told I am going to university have told me to take full advantage of it and it’s many amazing opportunities and I fully intend to! Being a little younger and still slightly tinged with the school-like “it’s not cool to be passionate about something” mindset, I didn't give my previous studies everything I really could have but I won’t making that mistake this time. I have tried to many times to get in and love illustration too much not to!
Create outside of Art School
Finally, I want to keep creating outside of art school. Part of the reason I stopped being creative when I left education last time is it became the only time I was making anything. I need creativity to be a hobby and habit not an obligation and even if it is just doodling weird dino-horse creatures or desiging my monthly favourites illustrations, Ill be happy if I keep making when I don't actually have to.
So there you go - 8 highlights and 4 goals, seems like a good ratio! Overall, my year as a 21 year has been bloody great and I can’t wait to see what 22 brings. Maybe by the time I turn 23 time I will only have 3 goals or maybe I’ll have 103 - who know’s! See you then for another rambling life-goals-themed post either way!