The year after 

Well first of all the title is a lie, we are closer now to 18 months after graduating, and there are so many of these stories around because there are so many graduates that find themselves in a different scenario than they expected following the spoils of human life. But I think especially for any one trying to break through into those lucrative creative markets it is difficult.

So this is my 18 months on for any of you who are about to embar on your third year and are bricking the workload of the year whilst trying to comprehend your next steps, for those in the exact same position of me that are trying to fruitlessly to keep up work but are struggling against the torrent of doubt in your mind that cannot fathom how this is ever going to change, and as well for those who may have been in this space once but have moved past. Afterall no matter what direction it is in, you do always move past.

I have been fortunate to find myself in the position of living in Norwich where crreativity burgens from the seams, and I am among a large group of illustrators, sculptors, musicians and writers. It means you keep in the loop, there are others around in your physical environement propelling you to keep working, this  has been a large motivator for me to keep personal work going even if I am not particularly doing anything with it afterwards.

Their are many I know that haven,t been able to do this, beause well frankly, a lot of students don,t walk out with the money o be able to support living afterwards unless they find a job straight away. I have managed luckily because I live with my partner and three other people. But boom already we hit worry number one and two the high price of independant living and the impossibility of the property market for our generation, and then the struggle to find a job. Apparently now the average time of expected unemployment for someone looking for a job, and I am talking about any kind of job, is six months. That is a long time to have to support yourself without an income.

So with these worries the creativity dies down, it has to. I know for me and my partner we issued with finding stable jobs for probably the first six months between us. Eventually we got sorted, but it was close, there were points where money barely seemed like it would stretch far enough, but luckily we were able to survive long enough to get to a position where we are now comfortable and settled with those things.

You think in your mind, at least I did, that once you get more sorted the stress will ease of and with those priorities at leats being maintained you will turn back to the career. But full time work on top of the drive to roduce work, get it out there, seek oppurtunities and flourish feels impossible. Of course you can have the drive to do it, but it is not easy and motivation is easy to lose when you are tired, stressed and have other things in a day you would like to enjoy as well.

I would say that after the first year I have noticed a change in the way I am thinking and I have noticed it in the people here too, that it has begun to  bother us, we have itchy feet and all feel as though we have lost something. We are all beginning to rethink things and take a look at where we are, and realising we aren,t entirely happy with the picture because we want to at least know we are working towards getting into the industries we want.

Now I will admit these troubles I am lucky to have the ability to think about the job  that I want, obviosuly the point I am making is today it is so hard to even have the basics, I am grateful that I have those so I have the ability to make changes and have choice.

I will say as well for anyone who is still out there just wanting to do the thing they love and it feels impossible, the most important thing is do what you need to, take care of what you have to because it is hard. That is the most important things, and the next is to just do what you can, keep creating if you can, in whatever time you can afford. You just have to do your best, take care of yourself and make sure oyu at least just keep trying.

No nothing happens over night, nothing is easy at all and just having the basics today is getting harder and harder. Make sure you do not put yourself down, take a look and whatever you have achieved so far and be proud and if you have an idea of something you want to do, keep going with it.
That is afterall the only thing we can do


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