31 December 2011

A Creative Odyssey : Looking back, moving forward

In December last year I had the pleasure of taking part in a blog hop organised by Jess from Epheriell Designs, in which bloggers posted about their creative dreams and goals for 2011.  You can read my original post here.  Seeing as 2012 is well and truly knocking on the door it seems appropriate to have a look back and see if I actually achieved what I set out to, and to think about what 2012 might bring in the creative arena.

My first goal was to make the time - all too often I have a head full of creative ideas but don't allow myself the time to make these a reality.  At the end of 2011 I still have an idea book bursting with things I haven't quite made happen, yet I do feel that over the past 12 months I have made the time to craft.   And it's been fulfilling and calming and fun.

Next I wanted to take advantage of the fact that I don't need to turn my craft into a 'quit your day job' kind of business, and I think I have done just that.  I've taken the time to explore new techniques and mediums (although any advance in my sewing skills has been completely stalled due to my obsession with all things paper this year!).  Importantly, I've been doing more 'just for fun' crafting - making my own Xmas cards, getting involved in mail art swaps, and crafting for friends and family.  There will be much more of this next year, I hope!

I also aimed to stay involved in the crafting community, in whatever way I could.  Time is always the enemy, so it's been a bit hit and miss.  But I'm proud of the way my blog has grown; I've had fun (and learnt a lot) from being actively involved in the Etsy Greetings team; and I've thoroughly enjoyed opportunities to guest blog and to participate in group projects like 52 Weeks of Mail and the Creative Collective monthly themes.  What I haven't done is completed any of my own 'big' projects.  They are still just a jumble of ideas and scribbled notes.

I also wanted to take better photos, and I'm pretty sure I can give myself a tick on this one.  I've been reading books and blogs and magazines, and went to a six week 'get to know your DSLR' course taught by the talented Carolyn Maryan.  I've got a long way to go yet, but I'm pretty excited about what I've learnt so far and I'm hungry for more!

Lastly, there were three new skills I aimed to learn.  To make my own note books (fail), to try needle felting (fail) and to learn maedup (Korean knotting - pass!).  So, I only got around to trying one of the three, but at least it was the one I really, really wanted to learn!

So, to 2012...I have a feeling the next 12 months are going to be rather interesting.  I have a feeling 2012 will be a year of thinking and planning and big, life-changing decision making.  A year of treading water and putting things on hold, and of up-in-the-air-ness.  A year of possibilities, fear and excitement; of not much happening but a heck of a lot potentially happening.  Plus a whole lot of really, really awesome travel thrown in for good measure.  

As a result, my blog may suffer (but hopefully not too much!), and my Etsy shop will definitely suffer (but I'm okay with that).  But, whatever life throws at us, in the next 12 months I still plan to: continue to share good things here; guest blog whenever I have the opportunity; make things for others that they'll love; develop my photography, paper art and maedup skills; support you and your creative dreams in whatever way I can; and maybe, just maybe, bring at least one of my scribbled note 'big' projects to fruition!

Does this time of year put you in a reflective mood?  What are your plans for 2012?


  1. Lovely post Emily.. I really love reading other's end of years' posts..
    I too am looking forward to the great big new year!

    may it treat us both very well.:)


  2. Great post Emily! My plan is to simplify. My life and work. I always take on too much and in 2011 my health suffered because of it. So simplify, simplify, simplify. Have a great year!

  3. Such a great post Emily!

    Like yourself, I think the next 12 months are going to be so interesting and I'm hoping I can make my goal of being able to balance work and travel work for me.

  4. I've really enjoyed exchanging mail art with you and reading about your adventures in travel, craft and photography. I'll be here, reading each post in 2012. Happy New Year!

  5. I think your photographs are great! (and I once trained as a medical photographer, so I will blow my own trumpet and say I know a bit about photography...) Keep loving your photography, it really shows in your photos :)

  6. those are some great goals. it love reading what people would like to accomplish, whether it's the beginning of the year or just any time of year. it's good to create goals for yourself, whatever it may be. good luck to you!


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