The Year of Making is NEVER over.

#theyearofmaking is over…but is it really?

Just one year ago — January 2, 2015 — I decided to start making stuff. Art. For myself. For pure fun and exploration. Up until that point, I’d learned most of my creative skills at the various jobs I held after college.

I went to school for Journalism, but realized after graduating that wasn’t what I wanted to do professionally. So I pivoted into communications + marketing.

All of my gigs started as writing roles, but shifted to mainly design by the end. I taught myself Photoshop and Illustrator by watching Youtube tutorials and free classes on Lynda.com.

After taking a job as a full-time graphic designer for Danielle LaPorte, I realized thateverything I made was for other people and brands.

I didn’t know what my real aesthetic and visual creative voice was. And that’s why I started The Year of Making.

I bought a little Wacom tablet and vowed to create one ‘web graphic’ every day for the year. I had no idea just how much would change once I began.

When you choose to start — to make — something shifts. A vacuum appears as your creativity is expressed, and it’s continually replenished by even more (different! exciting!) creative energy. 

The more you give — the more you make — the more you get back.

Within a month, my creativity began to gain traction in real life. I won a design contest for Darling Magazine, companies began to feature my work, and people sought me out for freelance design projects. The window of opportunity to go off on my own was there, so I decided to take it.

This whole year has been one big experiment. I started doing little web graphics — editing photographs and making digital collages — then shifted to typography andgraphic design, followed by taking and editing video — a short stint of vlogging — and then fine art, including painting, drawing, and even a bit of sewing.

I can honestly say this project has changed my life. I quit my job, started a business, sold a few pieces of art, and have an entirely different vision for my future.

And most importantly, I now view myself as an artist.

All this making has lead me to a life that feels more right than ever. I don’t think it’ll ever feel like, ‘Ah, yes. This is it. I’m here. I’ve accomplished it all. I’m done’,but I do truly believe I am where I really want to be.

But it isn’t over. It’s never going to be over. Some days that can feel exhausting, and other days.. exhilarating. 

It’s never over. Every year will be #theyearofmaking.

Amanda SandlinblogComment