Life & Design – polar opposites no longer!

I have been struggling to come to terms with my decision to have a break and do the art/ craft thing for a month or so. For as long as I can remember, I have followed everyone’s rather sensible advice about keeping your job until you’ve got another one to go to, never quitting when you’re angry, being professional, etc etc etc. So my decision to resign from my job this month was a really difficult one to make, and it’s also proving a difficult decision to reconcile with too. I am the ultimate worst critic of myself, and believe me I’ve been having some stern discussions between brain and heart this week.

Two things have made me feel a lot better about where I am, and ergo, where I can go from here. I even have a name for what I’m about to embark on… it’s the Craft Odyssey!

The first was this bangle by Delias Thompson. Simple by design; forged and hammered: this bangle spoke to me… It’s exactly me, rough and simple and direct. When I read the description Delias wrote, I saw that the letters pressed into the piece were actually a poem.

I will not forget who I am
I will never forget from where I came
To myself I will always be true
On this path I will call home

I have only gotten around to writing this entry now, and as I sit here writing it, I see that she has sold out of these bangles! I hope they inspire their wearers like they’ve inspired me. And hopefully she gets around to making some more! I will continue to drop my fiance not-so-subtle hints about this piece AND the stackable rings until then :)

The second thing was watching Stefan Sagmeister’s talk at TED in 2004 – “Yes, design can make you happy”. He spoke of using visual milestones and writing lists and really investigating happiness in design, or happiness through design. Above all his lists made me feel that I can do what I want to do, as a designer, crafter or artisan, because I think about the same things Stefen Sagmeister thinks about! Hopefully you get as much out of them as I did.

What I like about my job – Stefan Sagmeister
Thinking about ideas and content freely – with the deadline far away.
Working without interruption on a single project.
Using a wide variety of tools and techniques.
Travelling to new places.
Working on projects that matter to me.
Having things come back from the printer done well.

All the things I’ve learned in my life so far – Stefan Sagmeister
Complaining is silly. Either act or forget.
Thinking life will be better in the future is stupid. I have to live now.
Being not truthful works against me.
Helping other people helps me.
Organising a charity group is surprisingly easy.
Everything I do always comes back to me.
Drugs feel great in the beginning and become a drag later on.
Over time I get used to everything and start taking it for granted.
Money does not make me happy.
Travelling alone is helpful for a new perspective on life.
Assuming is stifling.
Keeping a diary supports my personal development.
Trying to look good limits my life.
Worrying solves nothing.
Material luxuries are best enjoyed in small doses.
Having guts always works out for me.


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