Happy New Year!

What a year. Lots of changes and challenges, obviously!

I started the year in a new post at Paignton Zoo, due to end December 2020. I had some projects set up ready to go with a few different organisations and companies, and ongoing work for Ron Campion Furnishers, then, in the space of a week, I lost several projects (some cancelled, some postponed and some downsized), had no work with Ron Campions as they had to close, and was on furlough. It was an uncertain time, as I am sure it was for many, and I tried to use my lockdown time as productively as I could!

For a few months I had very little to no work, a few updates to websites, but not much else. In between some downtime with my family, and some home DIY and catching up with jobs we had been putting off due to being busy, I signed up for a few courses, and worked through some tutorials. I’ll post more about these as I’m still working my way through these, but using Udemy, Domestika, The Postman’s Knock and Skillshare, I learnt some new Calligraphy skills, improved my drawing and painting and learnt more about social media and branding.

By August, things were looking up, I was back working a little for Ron Campions, some of my regular projects had been started up again, and I had picked up a new client – Vanessa James books – designing covers. I started to put a lot of time into my Etsy store, working on some pieces for sale, and got really into the whole process.

In October, things changed, again. I was due to go back to Paignton Zoo, but we ended up self isolating due to Covid in our household, and then entered another lockdown. Work slowed down again, (and a few things were postponed or cancelled…) so I made an effort to get some work together to sell on my Etsy store, and managed to make over 20 sales in November and December. The bestseller was most definitely my wall planner – I have sold around 15 of these now!

So now we enter 2021… I am at the Zoo still, my contract has been extended to May. I have a few upcoming regular pieces of work for Devon Carers and Ron Campion, and things have picked up a little. I will be doing some regular work with Dart Sails and Covers starting on Monday, and I have a few plans and ideas up my sleeve…

I really enjoyed the work I managed to do for the Etsy store, so I am working on more and hope to expand on this next year. I still have a few online courses to complete, and ideas for more learning for next year. I have many ideas for projects, and a sketchbook full of bits and pieces, so watch this space…!

January and February are often quiet, and with Covid, I am expecting it to be even quieter, so I’ll be concentrating on improving and expanding the Etsy site, and spending some time with Willow, before hopefully a busier, healthier and happier year.

I hope all is well, and wish you all a Happy 2021.

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