Awkward Elegance is the name of the swan, a drawing from a series of wheeler birds.
The last few days have been an explorative adventure of sorts. I am looking for a space to make in; I want some thing a bit different to what most of my local art studios can offer. So I have been looking for a small unit, a lock up, a very small warehouse. An abandoned office or disused shops are also spaces to consider, this fine city has a good selection of these. So I’m on foot and online searching for a good deal.
I had a look round some local industrial yards and trade parks. The first had a sign, with 6 units, their company names, the 6th unit read UNOCCUPIED. So I wondered round the units to find it! I found a group of men, drinking tea, some with panel filler and paint covered overalls, some with hands black with car engine based dirt. I got closer; they dispersed, all but two sitting on a car bonnet. I asked if the unoccupied unit existed. No. The bloke who made the sign wanted to keep the sign balanced. Which says a lot about some thing, but I’m not sure what.
So I carried on to the next yard, looking for a space that did exist. There is a peculiar building on stilts, my luck would have it that there was some one there to pester, a nice gent who nipped off to his office. I thought he might not return with the info, but he did, a name and number for me for the person in charge of the space in that area! I also found a few empty units elsewhere with more phone numbers. There is a space I really like, but it belongs to some one else. I have a proposition for the owner/current occupier, though it looks like he’s not been there for a few weeks. A creative note on the door and an intense Google search for his details may be required.
This intensive search has begun because I can’t make things from home, I need to be able to make a mess and leave it, to experiment and go back to it. On a Friday night I was having an evening of drinking wine and making bunting with a friend, she too is starting a new independent career. We were discussing what was difficult, what seemed impossible, the plethora of feelings you start to go through, the total change in life style. So what have you done? What are you going to make? I didn’t have and answers, just excuses and reasons why I hadn’t made any progress. I felt guilty, panicked, lost, a scene of failure and shame was creeping in around me like a suffocating fog. Then the next morning, in bed, before coffee, before breakfast my fiance asked what was I going to do, what have I put in place, what was I working on? I just shut down. I didn’t give him any answers. It wasn’t highlight to my weekend.
That Sunday we went to the BBQ that the bunting was meant for, chit chatting with other guests, some one asked me how my art was going. I said it wasn’t. Then it dawned on me, and I formed a sentence along the lines of “I had said I was going to try to make at home, and review it in a few months. I haven’t done enough so I do definitely need a space.” It was a mini break through. I realised I hadn’t failed, I tried some thing out, it didn’t work, I have learnt some thing. Now I have an improved plan and better focus. I just needed a little jolt, a push, a good dose of Iron supplement and a blog.
I had lost momentum, and focus. Basically forgot that getting a space of my own was an option. I hadn’t even considered a business loan. I have student debt that I haven’t even started paying off yet. I need to invest in it in it to give it a fighting chance. I’m considering a business start up loan.
In order to apply for a business loan, I need to make a business plan. A task that is equally daunting and exciting. I have made a start, compiling all the ideas I have, fleshing them out, adding the detail. Then I have to do market research, pinpoint my audience, look at budget boundaries and what I think I could realistically make in a month, what I need to make in a month, to calculate what my annual turn over needs to be and what my profit margins might be. I’m going to be creative and making, but bottom line I need to carve a living. I also need to be able to answer the question “what is it that you’re doing? What sort of business are you setting up?”
A creative venture.