With the start of a new year comes the inevitable promise of new resolutions.
I have never really been the kind of person who binds themselves to something like this or do I ever really intend to. I know some people see the beginning of a new year as a gateway to shed their old skin and start again, but to be honest I have never felt that need to do so.
I am certainly not saying I live a perfect life, as trust me there are plenty of things I can improve on, but from a personal point of view I don't see the new year as that kind of opportunity for me. If I wanted to cut back on chocolate, I will. If I wanted to join a gym and get ripped then I will (well, I would at least try).
For me I want to use the beginning of this year to set myself some targets and build on what I have already achieved in my career. Over the few years I have been freelancing, I have achieved a lot, but I have never really set any goals or targets. I have worked through the year without really thinking about where I want to be and what I want to achieve.
The main aim for me is to increase the amount of illustrations I create throughout the year. The last few years has seen quite a big decline in the amount of illustrations that I had produced. This is mainly to do with the success that I have had as a freelance designer. That has kept me busy throughout the year, leaving little or no time for me to produce anything. This is obviously a bit of a catch 22 as it's fantastic to be kept so busy, but I also have this craving to produce more illustrations.
In 2012 I need to find the balance between the two and hopefully get myself not only producing more illustrations, but also getting myself a little more established as an illustrator.
I have been lucky enough to work on many commissions over the years for a variety of companies across the globe, but it is still my yearning desire to have an illustration printed in a publication or better still, to work on some form of children's book.
I want to continue the development of my style as I still think it has room to not only improve, but to grow and evolve.
By the end of the year I also want to have designed products available to purchase through my site, like greetings cards, badges and maybe t-shirts.
From a personal point of view, 2012 will probably be the last year of me living in the town I have spent my entire life growing up in.
Over the years I have watched the town become a tired, lifeless area which has more trouble on the streets then I am comfortable with. As I grow older and consider having a family myself, I look at the area I grew up in through different eyes. I think about my future children growing up in the area and the thought of it makes me really uncomfortable.
Obviously my families safety is my main concern, but from a creative point of view I think moving away from the area will do me the world of good too. Last year I was fortunate enough to have spent a month travelling the States and taking this time away really made me realise just how stagnant I feel I have become over the years. I have spent too long concentrating on producing the work, without considering my approach to it and I feel a new start and taking the opportunity to travel when I can will help inspire not only me, but my work too.
I hope that by writing these down, it will inspire me to keep pushing towards these targets. As the year unfolds I will obviously share my insights with all you lovely people.
Happy 2012 folks!