October was one crazy, fast month. I wouldn't be convinced it happened if I didn't have so much to show for it.
- Almost went blind in one eye
- Freelance really picked up
- Book sculpture for Tampa
- Illustration and layout for VA Magazine
- Wedding planning
- 7 issues of PBN sent to the press in 4 weeks
I'm not complaining about having so much on my plate. Don't get me wrong. I am thrilled with the outcome of pretty much everything - including the fact that I didn't go blind. Yay! I did learn the value of saying "no," though. I had to say "no" to some things, both work related and socially. Even though using the "I could go blind," explanation felt much like "the dog ate my homework." But guess what? It was OK. I have always struggled with saying "no." The truth is, sometimes there literally are not enough hours in the day and the all nighters I once pulled in college are no longer realistic. Taking care of your mental and physical health are more important.
the blind thing
Ok, I'm going to lecture for a minute, then I'll tell you why.
Designers and anyone who looks at the computer for long periods of time: TAKE CARE OF YOUR EYES. Don't take them for granted.
In about 1 week all of this happened: My eyes got dry. My contact stuck to my eye. When I took out my contact it ripped my cornea (totally didn't feel it, but this is what the doc said caused it). For about 24 hours I thought I was going crazy because I swore there was an eyelash in my eye. I luckily notice a small white dot on my iris. The doctor told me to come in immediately. I was then directed to a specialist who said he would be on call for me over the weekend if anything got worse. I heavy medicated with drops and a temporary stem cell implant lens was put in my eye.
Everything is better now. I wear glasses much much more. Although thanks to the stem cells the scar on my eye isn't as deep, so I can still wear contacts without bacteria growing under them again. I also learned from the doc to wash my eyelids with warm water and no-tears baby shampoo. This stuff is amazing. It is so gentle and takes off makeup better than any makeup removing wipes I've ever tried.
Moral of that story is please take care of yourself. Things happen fast.
the book sculpture
The book sculpture for Tampa was one that didn't come super easily. I was getting over the eye thing and felt pretty creatively zapped. But with a few sketches and some good feedback from Tampa I pushed forward. I went with my first instinct. I wanted a tent with lights. To me that represented "festival," and the illustration was being used for their "Festival of Reading" cover. As the idea evolved I threw in a book signing and Florida-based animals reading books. I really couldn't be more happy with it. Giant thanks, once again, to Krystle Marcellus for being a truly terrific photographer and art direction buddy. And also not getting upset that I got sand all over her living room.
My daily job as creative director at PBN has been challenging lately but good. A job should always be challenging, right? I think that is what keeps us on our toes and makes us continually better. Whether it is better work, better time management or learning something completely new. I'm really honored to have recently been placed on ACBJ's national content team. I'll be teaming up with some amazingly talented designers from three other journals to create packages all 40+ journals can use.
I don't know if other creatives feel this way, but I feel a lot of pressure to make it awesomely creative. I know, I know. That is not what it is about. I am very aware of that. But I do feel the pressure to be the DIY bride. The only thing that keeps me calm in this is knowing that no matter what my partner/ favorite person will be by my side.
If you made it through this post, thanks for reading.