July 12th marked my first full year on Oahu. It's been full of change, growth and exploration. Also see: stress and impatience.
Since January I have been working as the Lead Designer for Pacific Business News - Hawaii's branch in the American City Business Journal family tree. It's been exciting and has pushed me to be a more free-thinking, self-solving designer. I am the only designer actually laying out the paper. It definitely helps that I have a really great, visual editor and I get wonderful feedback from our corporate office. It is very much a company of teamwork and people who take pride in their work.
Did I mention my schedule is now Monday through Friday? A day shift? AND I get holidays? And we host really fun events? This part is new for me since I have always been in a daily publication and PBN is a weekly. It was something I both wanted and needed. I get to spend more time with the people I care about and even though my job is fast paced, I feel I have more time for me. No more stress of a daily deadline (which I will admit I miss sometimes). I suppose living in a place labeled paradise by the majority helps too.
The new schedule gives me time to work on pottery. Something I haven't touched since I left Alabama. It is therapeutic and much needed for me to be creative away from the computer. The mug above is hand thrown, hand carved and hand painted. There are easier ways the letters could be done, like a stamp or a mold (as I've been told more than once). Although helpful by saving time, I love the process of these. No two are alike and the hand-carved letters are what make it really cool, I think.
A lot has changed in the past year. It is definitely a struggle moving. Just because you move to Hawaii (aka: paradise) doesn't make it easier. It may actually be harder. The booming housing market makes finding a place to rent difficult and the jobs to people ratio makes it pretty hard to get a foot in the door. I am aware of how incredibly lucky I am, although it was very stressful in the beginning. I met with a dozen companies and went 6 months before a full-time hire. Yay benefits and medical! Even though paradise isn't always paradise, as I settle in it is becoming home and am quickly falling in love with - quirks and all.