at the end of the tunnel

Photo taken from my Instagram feed. Follow me here.

Now that I'm finally starting to get my mojo back (wow, that bout of the flu was a rough one), I've been starting to think Spring, and more importantly, my spring collection. 

2011 was a big year for me in many ways, and it wasn't always an easy one. I'm still trying to find the right balance between the day job, the night job and my normal life (I'm starting to accept that this may be a constant battle), so I really want to focus on finding ways to make everything easier in 2012.

One of the great things about doing the One of a Kind Show in 2011 was all of the great people that I met, and most importantly - people who are in the same boat as me. I've always had the impression that most of the people out there who run a creative business have made it. They work (at the very most) part-time, and can focus most - or all - of their energy on what inspires them the most. Well, I was pleased as punch to meet quite a few artists this past year who blew that theory out of the water. Guess what? I'm not alone! There are MANY of us who are still waiting for the moment when we can "quit our day jobs". Even after years of hard work! And while that may seem discouraging to some, it's actually incredibly encouraging to me. I've definitely had moments over this past year where I've seriously considered throwing in the towel, but hearing that other people are fighting these same battles (and winning!) definitely gives me the motivation to: Just. Keep. Going.

And in the interest of all of you out there who are rowing this boat along with me, I’d like to steer this blog in the direction where I talk more about my process and how I’m (attempting) to manage everything. It’s a lot of trial and error, and I’m happy to share what I learn along the way. Safety in numbers right?

So, lesson number one from 2011: GET ORGANIZED.

And, more specifically: get organized enough so that photographing and listing my goods online becomes a part of my production, as opposed to an extra bit that I *sometimes* tack on to the end of it all. I feel like I've been cheating y'all a bit, because I tend to only list online maybe a quarter of the things that I actually make. Which means that if you don't come out to see me at a show, you don't really get the full sense of what I create - which is bad for everyone involved!

This step is a big one, and will require a lot of weekday organizing so that at least some of my weekends can be devoted to photography and photography alone. So the goal for this weekend: finally figure out a photography set-up that works for me in my apartment. This will mean building some sort of portable light box, and maybe even (gasp) organizing my storage room and office area so that I can easily work there without a stack of pillows falling on my head. At the very least, I need to get all of my photography supplies gathered in one place so that I don’t waste 2 hours trying to find my tripod, which is the first problem.

I’m excited to finally start getting everything in place for the new year. 2012 has been off to a rocky start, but I can feel myself getting back on track, and it feels pretty awesome. 


Michelle said...

Oh wow, I walked past that exact scene in your picture the other day! I thought about taking a picture but didn't feel like taking my camera out in the snow. :)

On another note, I hope this year is the best for your business! I know a lot of people who juggled a day job with their business (I used to be - and could still go back to being - one of these people). Sometimes I think it makes you more efficient in organizing your time.

shanny said...

Thanks, Michelle! If you have any saje advice, my ears are open. :)

Michelle said...

Hi Shannon,
When I was most motivated to photograph, it was because I was really excited about what I'd made and wanted to show it to my audience (readers, Facebook Fans, potential Etsy shoppers). I think the key is transferring this enthusiasm each time you finish a new product - that will motivate you to create time to photograph! I'm all about psychology and entrepreneurship, so I'm sorry if that sounds too vague or hippy-dippy. :) Also, this site has pretty good instructions on how to create a lightbox: http://strobist.blogspot.com/2006/07/how-to-diy-10-macro-photo-studio.html

I hope this helps! :)