Did Covid take the wind out of your sails? Physiological or psychologically? Just a matter of timing, circumstances or health? Have you reassessed? Personally, I could never go back to full-time work, even before the pandemic a 4 day week job and some additional freelance work was enough - variety matters. These days a 3 day week, or 2 job shares and some freelance bits and pieces suits me. Lockdown has shown me categorically that I am ill-suited to an office job, that I am content in my own company for much of the time - getting on with a thing, with moments of intense activity during the week and month. Project work.
What about you?
Has reading, thinking and writing up ideas got you?
Have other matters taken priority?
I lost a sister in April. More so than my parents dying (it happens to all of us eventually, it has to) I felt gutted, turned inside out and determined to live in a different way and at a different pace. I am doing what I dearly wish all my siblings had found a way to keep doing: art. I would have been my sister's salvation; it is what our late mother gave us - teaching us to draw and paint long before we could read or write, establishing our skills and interests many years ahead of our peers.
The dry weather has helped create a semi-permanent studio/workshop. Attending life drawing classes since November 2016 I have finally thought about working some of these in paint; watercolour for now, though there are pastels, acrylics and oils waiting to be deployed once I have a more permanent set up.
And if someone is going to pay me to do a thing, then I volunteer. I teach and coach swimming anyway but will be working with primary school kids outdoors on a nature reserve and have taken on some social media tasks for the Green Party.
Busy in a way I like.
I'd study for a Masters in Fine Art if I had the money. Had I taken my late mother's advice I would have done this 20 years ago. I'm a year through the PGCE she said I'd find handy to have. Then again, this is the person who tried to persuade me to return to school, four A'Levels completed, to add science qualifications and become a doctor ...
We are all influenced and persuaded one way or another.
Who have you influencers been? Parent? Grandparent? Hero?
The prices of postgraduate modules are ridiculous, aren't they? I hope you can do your Fine Art Masters one day. How is your PGCE going?
Thanks for asking!
Yes, the coast of OU courses has become a determining factor. One the one hand you could say it excludes the so-called 'leisure learner' (what was ever wrong with that), or learning on a whim (which might include me), whilst now you have to be pretty serious (or have the money) - wherein lies the problem, especially for The OU, which has always prided itself on providing Tertiary education to those who missed out on a university education because they had left school early, or had had other issues to deal with - not least financial. Education is so very important it should not be sold as a luxury good; it should cost something, more like water than whisky!
I might be able to continue the PGCE this coming academic year - I rather think I have to if I want to complete it. My first year was paid for by the college where I was working, this final year I would need to pay for myself which I currently can not do. I enjoy the commitment it requires, I rather think studying (at least for me) can be like setting your life on a set of rail-tracks - it provides structure in the chaos!
Yes, I like that metaphor of structuring your life on rail tracks. It certainly does.