Moving in a New Direction

The older I get, the more willing I am to voice what I really want in my career, even the things that feel like far-off dreams (which by the way, most of them do). I've been obsessed with surface pattern for a while now, and finally feel brave enough to try my hand at it and even put it out there in the world. I have no idea what I want to do with these, but that's what I find most exciting about it. I think surface pattern is exciting for all the potential it holds - it can really end up anywhere: textiles, packaging, mugs, walls... I really admire people who see the potential in a simple abstract shape that, on its own may not be remarkable, but somehow transforms when fashioned into a pattern. Over the last few months, I've turned my focus to creating work that makes people feel cheerful and whimsical.

The next few months are exciting to think about because, after about four years of trying to be and do everything, I am ready to walk away from a lot of aspects of design that do not excite me in exchange for the ones that do. It can be a really easy hole to fall into, the urge to master a million different skills. The pressure is certainly there when you are job hunting. I guess at some point you realize what kind of lifestyle you want, and what kind of work will afford that to you, and what you are/are not willing to sacrifice, and you make decisions from there. That's what has been happening to me, anyway. So anyway, I am really looking forward to this more focused approach to my life and career, and cannot wait to see what it will look like down the line!

Hope these little experiments bring a little joy to your Thursday.

Happy

dancing martin munkacsi photograph Have you guys seen the documentary Happy? I found it on Netflix and decided to check it out - I highly recommend it! They present different life experiences and couple it with research by scientists in an engaging way. Certainly happiness is something that almost everyone thinks about on a regular basis - just look at all the books and movies and research centered around it!

The movie sparked some inspiration as I continue to grow and develop this blog with content that I feel proud of, that's relatable. As I begin a new chapter in my life with this yoga teacher certification program, I'm excited by all the possibilities of being able to help others in their personal journeys, whatever that may mean for an individual.

So why not bring this new aspect to the blog?

Let's talk about happiness! It would be great to hear everyone's perspective on the matter. Where I've found happiness is often in the little moments that catch you by surprise, the ones you never expect. It isn't always easy, but as I strive to be more present in the moment, reveling in the little things really helps you focus and perspective. And besides, the little everyday things happen a whole lot more than the big "milestone" moments.

So with all that, I'm trying a new column about appreciating the little things, and I hope you really enjoy it. I would love to hear what makes you happy in your everyday life, so please feel free to reach out. I want to hear your stories, what you appreciate in life, what makes you smile.

Image by Martin Munkacsi.

Slow Down, Smell the Roses, Relish in the Moment

Okay, so I'm supposed to be on vacation right now, but I just wanted to take a minute and remind you to make it a point to slow down every once in a while. It's really easy to lose perspective and forget to appreciate everything when your life feels like it's going a million miles an hour (which mine has the last few weeks). Even if it's something small, treat yourself to some good quality time for yourself. Me? I'm spending the weekend with my favorite girls in Michigan. We don't get to see each other all that often these days, or even really talk on the phone as much as we'd like, but sometimes you just have to squeeze in whatever time you can get together and be ok with that. It doesn't take a whole lot to regain perspective. As I sit in this coffee shop and wait for my friend to pick me up, I already feel a million times more focused and calm and it's only been a few hours since I got into vacation mode.

The last few weeks have been pretty crazy (in mostly good ways) as I start to work on projects I've always dreamed of. At the same time, I've been sitting in front of a computer screen for many many hours working away and it's made me realize something: I need to get away from my computer more. Not only will it inspire my work in new ways, but well, I also won't feel like such a blob. I'm taking more initiative to take my design efforts away from the computer as much as possible, and back into hand-rendered work, which is where I started.

Whatever you may be doing with your life, don't forget to slow down every once in a while. Even if it's for a few hours. It will do wonders, I promise.

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