2018 has been a year of changes and trying out new things. For once I’m not going to say that really cliched 2017 feels like it was just a month ago. I’ve packed a whole lot of stuff into the year. But honestly, I’m having an existential crisis over the fact 2020 is just a year away.
LOOKING BACK ON 2018
One of what I would consider the biggest things about 2018 was the fact I got a place at university. I’ve been working towards this goal for so long. Its strange knowing I’m now at this point. Looking back just a few years ago I didn’t think I would be well enough to go back to my graphic design course let alone apply for university. It’s not been easy getting to this point but I am very pleased to say I’ve achieved it. I also have some exciting university-related content coming in 2019.
MORE LIKE THIS: My Thoughts On Art School After One Year
Before starting my Graphic Design course I had a look around the blogosphere for anyone writing about their art course. I love reading about what sorts of stuff art students get up to but couldn’t find much.
So I will be starting a series on what I’m doing on my course. At the moment I’ve written weekly posts about what I’ve been getting up to during the first semester. Depending on feedback I may continue this series for the rest of the year.
LEARNING TO DRIVE
Knowing I wanted to go to university in 2018 meant I finally went and got my driving license. My family have been saying to me for years about learning to drive but it was only this year that I felt properly ready for it. It wasn’t easy and I had to wait at least six months for my driving instructor to have time available. But I’m really glad I did it.
The learning process has been so strange, it got to the point where I was sick to death of lessons. I was just driving the same roads over and over again so it got boring. I didn’t have a car to practice between lessons so as my test came nearer the lessons became even more important. Weirdly I’m now finding it easier to drive because I don’t have an instructor in the car pointing out everything I did wrong. But I am definitely still learning. I’ve been very fortunate over Christmas that the roads have been quiet because it has massively helped my confidence in the car.
At the start of 2018, I realised I was quite unhappy and part of that was because I didn’t get out very much. So I started making an intentional choice to leave the house and go do something. It started off quite simple with walking the dog more, I went on from that to going to the cinema on my own. By the end of 2018, I’ve been doing overnight stays on my own. My health hasn’t been great over the last few months which has made it hard to go out more recently. But I’ve still done more this year as a result.
I’ve spent some time walking around the St James’ Park area of London. I found out I just love people watching. I went to a few cathedrals this year and discovered a new obsession with cathedrals. Wells Cathedral in particular. I’m not religious or anything I just really like them. I’ve been visiting museums more and sightseeing around Scotland. Buying a film camera has made this even more enjoyable because I get to try out photography.
I realise to some people staying in a hotel on my own or going to the cinema might not seem like a big deal. But to me, it’s an achievement. A few years ago these are things I would never have considered doing on my own. I’ve become more confident in 2018, I don’t mind going into coffee shops by myself. I find I get less anxious, especially when travelling. As I mentioned, recently I’ve done a few solo trips and have more planned for 2019. I would love by the end of 2019 to have done a solo trip to Disneyland Paris but this depends on my bank balance as much as my confidence.
BLOG & SOCIAL MEDIA
I feel I may have neglected my blog slightly this year. I know for a fact I didn’t publish as many posts as I would normally in a single year and my statistics have reflected this. Despite that, I am really happy with the direction my blog has been going in. I started off as a book blogger and while I do still occasionally post about books I like to include more of what interests me. Stationery and design particularly, I’ve also been trying to find ways of combining the two. I realise the content I post now is drastically different to a few years ago but I think that is natural as time goes on. Even if fewer people read my blog I am enjoying the writing process more than I did.
This is the same for social media, Instagram especially. In 2018 I made a change to Instagram where I separated my design work from the lifestyle images. Again this means the focus of my Instagram has changed (it used to primarily be about books). But I’m enjoying the content I create for it more. On a technical level I love the photos I take and how they are edited, I transferred this style to my blog and I have become much happier with the photos on my blog as a result.
The only issue I have had is finding time for all these things. I’ve become more consistent with posting but I have neglected the social media side of blogging. In 2019 my main goal for my blog is to be more active on Twitter and Instagram. Promoting my blog posts more and interacting more.
And that was my 2018 round up. This has been a really positive year for me with lots of new and exciting things happening. My health hasn’t been the best but that’s a whole other story. I just want to take a moment and thank everyone who has read or commented on a post over the last year. I am truly terrible at replying to comments but I do read every single one. Wishing you all the best for 2019.