I'd like to interrupt your productive work week with a bit of silly nonsense. Michelle kindly alerted me of the new Marcel the Shell video this week. I couldn't stop laughing, especially when Marcel says his favorite phrase is, "Life's a party, rock your body." I haven't had much time to design any wallpapers in a long while (too long), but the instant I heard this phrase I just knew it needed to be a wallpaper. This week, I've been working hard to finish up a lot of client projects, and I've been a little too wrapped up in the work. It's always nice to take a break and laugh.
I've been in a few conversations lately where I've been asked to describe what I do. Being asked that question made me reflect a bit on where I'm at after one year of being a freelance designer. In all honesty, the first year has just been about making it for me. I've been very focused on bring in enough work to justify to myself that I can go it on my own. I've felt quite lucky to receive the work that I have. It's made for a smooth transition from employee to self-employed. But lately, I've had an itch to push myself more creatively. I haven't exactly kept up with my goal of not waiting to do those things. So, I'm going to renew my goal for this next year of freelance to change things up a bit. I'd like to focus on producing more work—either for clients or for myself—that's creatively challenging. I'm sharing this goal here in hopes this will help keep me accountable. Seriously, can someone be my accountability partner? I could use all the help I can get. I'm starting things off with a wallpaper design that's a bit out of the ordinary for me. I'm dusting off the paint brushes and also am trying to incorporate more colors in my work. I've been a little too heavy with the black, grey and white lately. The sentiment in the wallpaper is from Anil Sinha, "The secret of change is to focus your energy not on past which has gone, but give new direction to your dreams." Anyone else feeling like they need to change things up and re-focus on what they're passionate about?
I used to have a skeptical dislike of Valentine's Day. Materialism, forced day of love when you should be loving one another all year, blah, blah, blah. But, now that I've been around a few years, I guess I've become more of sentimental sap. I kind of love it now. You won't see me with a bouquet of red roses or anything, but I do like the idea of taking a moment to appreciate what you can easily forget to take notice of throughout the year. This quote by Leo Buscaglia has been resonating with me,
"Love is life. And if you miss love, you miss life."
It's a good reminder to me of what's important in life. I'm truly missing out on the richness of life if I'm not paying attention to the love right in front of my face. I don't just mean romantic love either; I also mean love for my God, son, family and friends. Recently, I've had my head down and have been spending almost every free moment I have working. It's made me feel pretty selfish with my time and my attention. This post is sort of a stake in the ground to help get me looking outward as to what I can do for others rather than focusing so much inward as I have been.
Also, happy love day to you (if you choose to celebrate, that is). In effort to give back—in a rather small way, admittedly—I've designed a desktop wallpaper for your computer that's available as a free download in case you enjoy the wise words above. Download the Love is Life wallpaper here. It's rather large, so it should easily size to fit any screen.
And, because I really need another inspirational quote in my life (please note the sarcasm), I recently purchased this Oh My Dear print for my office that I'm working on re-doing. I got it to be a reminder that creativity isn't just sitting in front of a screen or drawing in a sketch pad. It can be in how you love as well. Speaking of, I should probably remove myself from this computer and go wrap up another Valentine's gift. I've got a whole series of puns to write for today. What a lucky guy.