December Daily: December 7, 2016

I made it to the gym today! By far, my favourite accomplishment of the day. My other favourite thing? I bought watercolour paper today, because I ran out of parchment paper (which is totally not the appropriate medium for watercolours, but that’s what I had, so that’s what I used).

OMG, watercolours look so much better on watercolour paper! Go figure.

So why was I buying watercolour paper, anyway? Because we’re making holiday cards to send to everyone! We forgot last year and it was really sad. This year, we are not forgetting. I am writing out some nice words in my amateur brush script style so we can use them for the cards.

Life as a Creative

One of my favourite things about being a creative is my desire to learn and try so many different things. I do have my specialty skills of course (coding), but I’m definitely a jack of all trades. I know a little bit of calligraphy, so that makes brush script easier, and a little practice goes a long way. Now I’m using it to create holiday cards.

I spent many years scrapbooking, which means I know quite a lot about acid free inks and paper, different types of embossing tools, how to distress paper, how to use stamps, how to make stamps – hell, I even know how to bind a book because of scrapbooking.

At one point, I was painting a lot of things – I may not be an amazing painter, but I can turn out a canvas that’s decent enough for me to put up on my walls – and so I have a gallery wall of art I’ve created, and when people look at it, they go whoa. It’s fun and gratifying to see people’s reactions to it.

I’ve known how to use Photoshop for years and when I decided to start a web design/development business with Bobbi, it was really handy. Bobbi is way better at designing in Illustrator and Photoshop and InDesign than me now, but in the beginning, I taught her what I knew about Photoshop and that got us going – thank you random Animation class from grade 10 and major obsession with anime at the age of 13!

I directed and shot a small documentary highlighting a youth shelter in Fort McMurray – which we played at a concert to raise awareness – while I was a part of the Mayor’s Youth Council. That project was enough to teach me a little about video editing and I have used those skills to create tutorial videos for my clients that they find really handy.

I could keep going. The point is, I try a lot of different things, because I’m constantly full of ideas. I’m great at starting (although not so great at finishing sometimes) and it’s one of my strengths.

Follow Your Curiosity

So when you have an idea, explore it. Try it out, see what you can do with it. Don’t dismiss it because you don’t know how to do something right away. You’ll figure it out as you tackle your project. Learning new stuff is legitimately awesome, when your motivation is ‘cuz I wanna’.

I wouldn’t be here today if I didn’t follow my curiosity. So follow your curiosity, y’all. You never know what will come of it.

December Daily: December 6, 2016

So the thing about working 10 hours one day, is that the next day you feel kind of exhausted. I took it a little slow today, and somehow that also involved eating junk food. I also watched reruns of Drop Dead Diva – the more female oriented version of Suits with a hilarious body switching twist that makes absolutely no sense if you think about it too hard – but really, it’s a great show, and the cases they highlight and depict are interesting and important.

Today I decided that I was going to start taking care of my plants again. I’d been neglecting them for a few weeks now, and they’ve been drooping sadly (one is like 90% dead but I’m pretty sure I can revive it with some TLC). So I watered them, snipped off the dead leaves, gave them some fertilizer food stuff, and they are already a tiny bit perkier – because water!

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December Daily: December 5, 2016

Whew! Worked just over 10 hours today. Most of it non-stop. Finished up that lead page I was talking about yesterday. Had a couple meetings, and dealt with a particularly finicky server caching issue that’s getting in the way of launching a program that one of my clients really wants to get off the ground.

Sadly, I didn’t get up early enough today to be able to get to the gym, and my dance class this evening was cancelled, and I was too tired to really go anywhere after working 10 hours. What a day.

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December Daily: December 4, 2016

So it’s a little bit inaccurate to call this series December Daily, since I’m technically starting on the fourth of the month. However, I do plan on posting daily during this month. These are not really going to be long posts. They are an exercise in routine, a demonstration of accountability, and also to give people a peek into my days. Lots of people wonder what I do. What does this work from home business even look like.

A Month(ish) In The Life

Well, for the longest time, I belonged to the memory-keeping world – scrapbooking, etc. And we have a project called A Day In the Life, where you keep meticulous track of everything you do on one day and then you document it. Often as blog posts, a small scrapbook, or a couple Project Life layouts, etc. So consider this A Month(ish) in the Life. Except it won’t be meticulous, more broad, and only documented on this blog.

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Running a Service Business: Operate in good faith, act with good will

Running a Service Business: operate in good faith

I’m part of a number of Facebook groups – some related to WordPress, others about creativity, and many small business communities. A couple days ago, someone posted about their shipping rates having disappeared on their website and if someone could help, because their original developer wasn’t responding. I offered to take a look. The original developer had used an outdated and unsupported plugin that had known issues clearly documented in the reviews and around the web from way before the website was ever created. Yet he had used it, because it was free and seemed to have worked when he installed it.

Then when it stopped working and his customer frantically reached out to him, he gave her the cold shoulder. I also learned that he frequently did that with the client and failed to ever explain how things actually work. It left the client feeling bewildered and afraid to change anything lest their site broke. Continue reading