Sometimes your only transportation is a leap of faith…
It was a cold grey April day as I stood in the kitchen looking through the window at yet another rain heavy cloud, this winter had seen too much of that. And yet the depressing state out side could do little to change my quiet and reflective mood, just like the steam from my tea rising against my cheek so too were my spirits. You see I’ve finally done something for myself, and the the warm glow that was beginning to grow inside me spread to my lips and a quiet smile spread across my face, I’d done it, I’d finally done it!
When I left school (20+yrs ago!) it was with good grades and a desire to work in the design industry but there was so little information out there about what was available and the thought of spending 7 years studying (I could have been a lawyer for that) left me feeling flat. I found a local company offering design apprenticeships and I was accepted! Paid for education and on the job learning with 30 other apprentices in my year alone, it was a good place to be. I qualified and went on to take a degree, again paid for by the company and I’d secured an employed position within the design department. No student loan! Life was good.
Having enjoyed a successful yet corporate career so far in engineering, ranging from Automotive to Railways the only thing that was missing to complete the trio was Aviation…
I’ve travelled to amazing places and achieved some fantastic things during that time, however it’s always felt like something was missing…
A trip to Amsterdam in September last year confirmed this after spending some time with my cousin and his wife who moved their life out there for 3 years. Coupled with their enthusiasm for the jobs they do and bolstered by the wonderfully cultural and open minded city that it is, Amsterdam had me soul searching.
“If I could go back and start again, no obstacles, what would I do?
What do I love?
What am I passionate about?
What drives and motivates me?
When have I been at my happiest?”
The answers to those were easy, colour, pattern, texture and textiles, creating, making, baking, sewing, organic growing, the planet and DOING! Yes, I am THAT person who counts the number of tiles on a floor, looks for the repeat in a pattern, makes pictures out of lines on dodgy artexed ceilings in my head (I have one), and doodle endlessly on any scrap of paper I can find.
So how to make this a reality? Hours of internet trawling ensued…Yawns…and then I stumbled across this:
Back in March I took an important step to realising my dream of seeing the things I’ve created out there in the big wide world brightening up peoples daily lives, even for just the tiniest of moments to break the monotony and mundane. I researched as much as I could about the team and the courses on offer and after a deep breath of trepidation signed up for the Design School.
So that smile, that crept it’s way across my face? I’d just completed the first module and it felt GOOD! For the first time in a long time everything made sense, clicked into place, I’d found what I was meant to do and probably should have done all along if I’d listened to that little voice…
Rachael and Beth have created a wonderful place to learn that is nurturing, well paced, challenging and most importantly OPEN. Everyone is encouraged to share their work, at whatever stage, in a secure online environment that allows feedback from peers and everyone learns from each other, it’s refreshing and inspiring to say the least!
With 2 more modules to go at the end of this year I still have a looooong way to go in developing my style and to help that I joined up to the free Summer School they were offering which gives everyone an opportunity to design to live current trend related briefs – I’m learning so much.
It’s been such a voyage of discovery so far, from both a personal growth perspective and an awe inspiring journey into a world of creative talent.
You’ll see what I mean when you browse the galleries of the work for Summer School that have been submitted so far from Beginners and Intermediates to Advanced tracks, from 5000 designers all over the globe – and what a colourful one we intend to make it!
And even more good news that made today a good day and prompt this compendium of my journey so far:
Yep, a design I made for the Beginner’s track of Summer School made it onto their blog page, those sneaky flamingos! 😉
So what’s next besides completing the course and building a portfolio? Well I’ve taken a huge step and signed up for the prestigious Lilla Rogers Global Talent Search, more on that here:
And I know, looking at all the thousands of talented creatives out there, that I don’t stand a chocolate fireguard’s hope in winning. But I figured this much, what have I got to loose? Absolutely nothing! And I will gain valuable insight into a World class team of judges, buyers and agents.
Who knows where it’ll go and as Rachael taught us right at the very beginning of Module 1 (and has now become my mantra):
“Don’t compare your beginning to someone else’s middle…”
Be brave. Whatever it is you believe in, yourself, the universe, another entity or deity; take that leap of faith.