Earlier this month I held my first ever Modern Calligraphy Tag workshop at my home, and it was such an enjoyable and rewarding experience. I had spent so many weeks prior to the workshop creating my very own beginners calligraphy workbook as I wanted to ensure that each attendee was able to learn practical skills that they could then take home and practice at a later date. Calligraphy requires so much repetition, therefore having a good guide book was so important to get right. I tested the workbooks on friends and family, and through trial and error, I was also able to create a book specifically for left-handed people to use.
As those of you who follow me on instagram may know, I attended a wonderful wreath making workshop at the weekend, hosted by the lovely Emma and Gina of 'The Cosy Shed'. I saw a while ago that they had released workshop dates, but as they are based in Norwich, I thought there was no way I would ever be able to attend (as I absolutely hate driving, and I won't even drive to Nottingham, a mere 30 minutes away). However, my lovely boyfriend Jai offered to take me there and back, and I very graciously, and quickly, accepted. After a long 3 and a half hour drive, we finally arrived at the big black gates, and drove through the park to Hayman Lodge, where the workshop would take place.
I've had a couple of requests to do this blog post, and honestly, the only reason I've decided to do it now is that I finally had some advice to give. As a fellow creative person, I often find it really hard to stay focused, and remain passionate about my work and my business when things just aren't going 'according to plan'. There will be times when I'm overly self critical, or I fall down the treacherous rabbit hole of comparison, and it can take days or even weeks to start to feel that inspiration trickle back into my life again. So, now that I find myself here, at a point in my life and my business where I am extremely excited for the future, whilst also being slightly nervous, I thought I would try and impart some wisdom onto you, my lovely readers.
Photograph by Charlotte Clemie Photography
Disclaimer: The following article may include certain anxiety based triggers. If you aren't feeling in the right frame of mind to read this, then please click away now.
After attending the wonderful YorksInstaMeet last week at Priory Cottages, along with over 100 other creative people, I thought this would be a great topic to address. As someone who suffers with anxiety myself, agreeing to go to networking and social events like this can be more than daunting. If you would have asked me to go even 6 months ago, the answer would most probably have been a firm 'erm, no thanks!', with my eyes resembling a deer-like alertness and fear.
I've seen this conversation crop up so much recently that I thought it was time to sit down and really think about how to stay motivated when you run a business from home. One, so that I could actually learn some tips myself, and two, so that I could share my thoughts and findings with you, and hopefully provide some insight.
It's been a few months since my one year busine-versary rolled around, and I can't believe how much things can change in 12 months. I think it's always good to keep tabs on your milestone moments, as looking back at how far you've come can be such an incredible confidence booster. When you first start your business, you're full of excitement and fear in equal measure, wondering if you'll be successful. After a year of working for myself, I can tell you that those feelings don't really disappear like you thought they would. Yet, I feel like that's also part of the enjoyment of being your own boss. It motivates you and inspires you to keep pushing forward.
I've had quite a few requests for this blog post over the last couple of months, and I've finally gotten around to sharing it with you! Please excuse the photography in the following photos, but I wasn't fully prepared to document this as a DIY piece until just before I was about to start. Anyway, as this is my first ever DIY on the blog, I hope it will do the trick.
Where else would you rather be on a Friday morning than at Newark Antiques Fair? Obviously, it would have been more beneficial to have visited on the Thursday, when all the best treasure is up for grabs. However, I was on holiday, so Friday would have to do for my Mum and I this time. If you aren't aware of Newark Antiques Fair, then hold on to your hats because I've got a few juicy photos coming up. Newark is the largest Antiques Fair in Europe. Europe?! And I am lucky enough to be just 30 short minutes away from it! So every other month, when the lovely fair is held, my Mum and I make sure our schedules are free!
Now, I think it is imperative to start this blog post telling you the absolute truth. Once you see the following photos you will understand why I have entitled this blog post 'An Afternoon In My Garden', as the flowers that grow here are just so incredibly beautiful. I must admit, however, that this garden is actually my mother's.
A few months ago, Focus Gallery posted a photo on their instagram page advertising an upcoming exhibition called 'New Talent'. The post was a call to action for artists who had never exhibited their work before, to apply and be considered for the exhibition. At this point I had obviously never exhibited in a gallery, but I had also never done a show before either. Although it seemed a little daunting at the time, the prospect was also incredibly exciting, so I applied straight away, and I was utterly thrilled to receive the good news that my work had been accepted!