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Well, never one to miss a chance for overcommitting, I have been zapping around these past few weeks. I really wish I was focused enough to maintain a regular blogging schedule, but there’s so much other LIFE to grab hold of. Since my diagnosis, I’ve been getting on brilliantly with medication but it’s always in the back of my mind that my leg has stopped working once, it could do it again… I don’t want to spend these years while I’m still confident enough to travel playing it safe. So – in the past 6 weeks I’ve gone from holidaying in Norfolk to London, Edinburgh, St Andrews, London, Belfast, Dublin, London, NOTTINGHAM. FINALLY… I have four days at home before one last jaunt next week. University starts on the 25th September, so that will become my focus over winter.

Back in August I picked up a converted wheelie bin wormery from The Urban Worm. They are planning some really exciting new projects and I’m hoping that settling into my degree will pin me down in once place long enough to offer up myself for voluntary work with them. Keep an eye on their social media for more information!

Since getting a house with a yard, I’ve been recycling my old broken suitcases as raised beds. Not just my own, either – who else has seen endless abandoned suitcases in the street? They now come home with me to be resurrected! I rescued some plastic buckets from a skip when college closed down, so there are a few more bits of waste not quite in the landfill yet. It annoyed me that our council doesn’t take food waste, and there’s nowhere in my concrete “garden” where a compost bin would have comfortably sat. A wheelie bin wormery is the perfect solution! My new Tiger Worm friends are happy munching through my leftovers, scrap paper, and the leaves I pull off plants to encourage new growth.

This year’s crops have been a mix of success and tragedy – I suspect cheap compost was to blame for an outbreak of powdery mildew that did for my courgettes but I am currently in root vegetable heaven. Beetroot and parsnip and onions, OH MY!

 

Because organising a month long gallery show isn’t enough for me, over summer I volunteered myself for helping out with the dealer room at Titancon Belfast. I’ll make a separate post about that as there is so much to cover.

I did have some of my drawings in the art show which was an amazing ego boost. There’s nothing like seeing your work framed and hung to make you feel legitimate. I feel like I’ve finally found a medium and a style that suits me. I always wondered how people could “riff” on a subject in art and not be bored, but I love repeatedly drawing feathers! Yes… just like my tattoo. I expect I’ll end up with an entire sleeve of them.

I have always found it hard to be consistent. I am currently on the waiting list for an ADHD assessment. This process has taken at least two years now. I initially went to see a specialist and then couldn’t afford another private appointment, but it seems worth pursuing. The NHS sent me a questionnaire and I ticked every symptom box except one… but there’s no learning support at uni unless I have that diagnosis on my notes. I’m 5 months into the latest waiting list and have already gone past the date they said they expected to see me by.

This effects my work in a lot of ways: I don’t give my skills time to develop, I move on to a new project before I’ve finished the last one and I procrastinate and avoid starting something if it feels like I’m going to be required to focus for more than a few minutes. Part of the reason I went back to art school was to challenge these tendencies, the structure and deadline setting is very useful for me. Looking back, I left DVD Authoring because I was climbing up the walls flicking between tabs on my computer, banging out a master tape while having an IM discussion in another window, reading a news story in another and doodling on a post-it note next to my mouse hand. Nannying was a job where ADHD would go unnoticed if not being an actual strength rather than a weakness. It really is nice to be getting insight into where and how I can sabotage myself… and making progress with it.

Sometimes it can feel like I’m doing battle with my own flaws, but I’ve had an illustration accepted for 3 of Cups Press’ first anthology “On Anxiety”, I’m soon going to be serving free tea and coffee and chatting to members of the public about a coneptual work I’m really proud of, and I seem to be on a roll with pen & ink so… to my fellow weirdos and quirky types… may the odds be ever in our favour.

Fight on, fearless ones!

 

 

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