Stuck 

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So here I am. In bed with a cup of hot chocolate and reeling from the days events. I know having a good old moan on social media isn’t #inspo but I am feeling lost, stuck and rubbish.

Today I had to go under general anesthesia to do some intense procedures and tests to rule out yet more crap things that my body seems to want to throw at me. I don’t write this to be like, oh you poor thing “you ok hun”. I write this because having it all floating around my head and inside of me is quite literally eating at me.

I mainly wanted to write an update on how my work and illustration is going and I feel like not many illustrators or artists really share online when things are SHIT.

I feel like I am watching the world around me succeed and do well, and I celebrate it I REALLY DO.

DSCF0670But here I am left, days spent in bed, feeling awful about my abilities to create. Feeling like I am not succeeding or getting anywhere. Feeling like everything I create is pointless and just silly and amateur. I feel like a massive imposter and like my work doesn’t do or say anything and I don’t quite know how to go forward with that. I just feel like a massive failure in terms of trying this hard slog of being an illustrator. I have posted to my social media for two years everyday and feel like I am in the exact same position. It feels like no one is really willing to work with me or that I am indeed talented enough to find work. Also feeling like I have had the choice taken from me. I feel like I have been given the bad luck of the draw. I am yet to see what I am supposed to learn from this other than to give up?

I am struggling and feeling like I am fighting every day to make my mark. To be successful. To get published. To get clients. To get a little recognition for all the hard work I have been putting in. And it just seems to be going no where. I have been told that I can’t work. But this goes against what I want and who I am. I want to make something, be successful and be the best I can be. There are just so many obstacles in my way though, that it is hard to know where to start or how to begin. Even the baby steps I am making seem pointless and they are not adding up. People keep telling me it will happen and its just persistance and that pays off. But what I keep asking myself is when? When will I get lucky. I ask for little. I would just like to create everyday and work for myself in an environment that makes me happy and I get to do what I treasure and love. Why does this seem to come with such a heavy price?

I shall write a list of my worries and updates. And I would appreciate any advice there is to give with my work and what steps o can take. Because at the moment I feel shit, like a talentless joke. Like a comedy contestant on xfactor whose friends and family are too polite to say other wise.

I feel stuck in which direction to take things in. I feel like it is such a over saturated market to get into. How do I get my stuff out there? I constantly feel like there is some secret I am not privy to and also feel like a lot of creatives like to keep their tricks hidden as so not to get competition.

Over all I am tired of my health situation and all the unfair hold ups and being held up. I just am at the point of giving up really as it’s not bringing me joy and I feel blocked, stuck and in a loop of throwing all my limited energy at something I dear;y love only for it to fall on deaf ears.

How can I get better and how can I forfill my dream/goals?

Not to be overly dramatic but writing this has made me have a HUGE CRY.

Here are some things I feel:

-Everyone else is taking over the world and getting all these amazing chances. How? What’s the secret?

-What am I doing wrong?

-What if  I am just another creator trying to make it in the big pond

-What if its true that I am actually no good

-Why is everyone else super productive and confident an getting chances

-Is it all just smoke and mirrors, are platforms such as instagram and youtube just showing the best bits. Not these gritty behind the scenes sadness and panic sessions?

IMG_8682I would really love some feedback, even if it’s anonymous and even if it’s not kind. I would just love to get out of this horrible cycle I have found myself in.

I don’t have much energy left to fight anymore and after an awful experience working in a company where you were constantly made to feel like you were at the bottom of the ladder and there was no way of climbing up it and that you were/are a terrible designer and creator and are worthless. Well I am feeling that. I am feeling my body giving up on me. And I am just tired. I don’t want to take a break, I do want to push through. But what direction do I take? How do I get over this feeling that everyone else is doing it and I am still making baby steps. I still feel like I am at the bottom of the ladder and not good enough to “make it”.

It’s so hard when you are doing it alone and for yourself. I feel lonely here without any type of peers to cheer me on or give me feedback. I long to have a community round me where I can feel my best and work and get inspired and be able to create and get feedback.

SO  I always feel like there is a massive pressure to do something. To be someone and to be succesful. I have a HUGE fear of not doing what i always imagined, not being able to do what I always wanted.

So that’s my update, life you are a shitter sometimes.

 

My favourite places #3

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Step inside this wonderful decay and you will find treasure. We used to live right across the road and its a building that I always looked out on. Visiting it was always a treat and used to take me right back to the days of studying fine art at uni. The smell of turps and paint, the sound of buzzing minds and the silence that is creativity. I absolutely love the studios, each one so personal to the artist. I love peering into work in progress’s and things just waiting to happen. Its messy and old and looks almost abandoned. What was an old fabric factory on the what was once the main highway of Barcelona. This building bares its bones and houses magic. I love it a lot and I hope it always remains. One day I would love to have a place in a studio like this, in the meanwhile I can dream a little.

This is a little series I started on my blog to help me keep track of and share and celebrate some of my most treasured places. Places where I feel happy and that make me feel like me and places that I find super inspiring. Here are past places

Bits and pieces- week 18

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What a week. It has been filled with highs and lows. The low’s been very very low indeed. I have had many a hospital visit (infiltrations, new medicine etc). ATM it seems like the second round of Rituximab has worked and I can finally (for the first time in over a year) reduce my cortisone dosage. Which is a small, good new step (YAY!).

This week has been the hottest so far and I can say that summer has officially started. Sleeping and feeling sluggish and heat and the sun for me in general are terrible. I try to hermit away in the day as much as possible because I just CAN’T. But it is nice to get outside and go on little strolls either to the beach or the park. Getting my legs out and freckles on my arms.

Thursday night was so nice, getting out for San Joan. San Joan is crazy, fireworks and fire and noise everywhere. We went down to our beloved Poblenou (our barrio) and watched the parade of the Corre Foc, with its amazing percussion band, go and ignite the bonfire. We then walked along the beach and watch the fireworks and chinese laterns before sitting in a park talking about our future and drinking a clara. Perfect.

Waking up in tears to the news on friday, manic family chats and feeling genuinely shocked and scared at the state of things here, there and everywhere. I feel sad and scared for my future as an EU Migrant/citizen. Now more than ever borders need to be opened. I can’t stand this “Great” Britain rule Britannia island mentality. Which to be honest I find embarrassing- its actually something I have noticed more and more when going back. I am also VERY angry that my postal vote did not arrive on time and my proxy vote was unable to vote for me. DESPITE sending everything well in time. I am shocked to the core at some of the things I have seen people I know think and believe (everyone has a right to their opinions and beliefs BUT when they are just down right offensive and racist etc it hurts my heart). I will write something more on this in the future as my head is fuzzy and still reeling from it all. Tuesday marks my 10 year anniversary so expect a post then.

Friday I escaped to my favourite place, sat on a rock and watched my busy, hot chaotic home from above and felt a sense of pride and belonging for one of the first times since arriving. It felt right to be where I was and looking at it all pan out from above I felt incredibly lucky and fortunate to experience it. I took a deep breath and felt instantly better. My favourite place is magical like that. It is healing and where I shall escape to more frequently.

Lets see what next week brings!

My week in photos / Notes from this week 14

So this week. It started at the hospital, as most of my weeks seem to do. And ended in some sort of despair. My mental health has been really hit and shattered this week. I blame feeling so bloody useless and stuck and not being able to live the life I want to at the moment. Also I have had bloody enough of medication, hospitals, dr’s, pain, tiredness and being a hermit “recuperating”. At the moment I can barely manage normal life, I mean getting up out of bed and getting dressed. I have had a black cloud over my head and feel like I have been slipping into a black vortex that pulls me under at a speed unknown to man. I try with all my might to turn off the thoughts and feelings of not feeling good enough, the worthlessness and loneliness but it all gets too much. So after speaking with my darling sister and having all the tears I decided that enough was enough and that I would try and dust myself off and do little tiny things that make me happy. I know I need to get out and not isolate myself so much, and learn how to turn down the volume of these bad whirring thoughts a little. I need to avoid these massive gaping sink holes that appear. So that was fairly honest and open, I am really not sure why I insist in writing such personal posts but its what happens when I type in this white box. I am forever an over sharer.

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Monday 7.00 am MRI scan, the weirdest feeling laying in a noisy tunnel to start of the week. I was in there for ages, so used to them now. I nearly slept and actually was quite the mediative experience. My hospital is right on the beach which means I step out and have this view. Its like some sort of oxymoron. I like it though. MRI’s and the dye they use make me very dizzy so I always appreciate the fresh sea air and view. Repeat all this for Tuesday.

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By Wednesday I had decided enough was enough and ventured out on my painful puffy knee (I had some sort of keyhole surgery last week, where I had this weird radioactive liquid inserted to clean the knee joint). My knee is still the same as it was before but any way I NEED to get out and see the world a bit. Walks to the local park with my pup are everything as are pretty flower shops and green leaves.

IMG_3876Spying this message and I think this should be my mantra, this made me wake up a little and really think that yes, it is true and I can choose what happens to me here and now. I must remember this! I love whoever has written this everywhere.

IMG_3940 IMG_3920 IMG_3885 IMG_3883 IMG_3945To be honest not much time has been spent in my studio this week, in fact I have ignored it and not really had the energy to go in. Having a creative block and creative crisis also feeling like whatever I do is not what I want to create and uninspired. I think this contributes a lot to my emotional state and vice versa. I need to get in the studio and just play and let go a little. Its ok to have a break and be behind and not have everything so controlled and planned.

DSCF5467 DSCF5468 DSCF5471 DSCF5473 DSCF5472So by the time Saturday arrived I couldn’t wait to get out and have a little date day with my Borja. It was a very grey day, after having rained all night and the sky kept threatening to rain. My favourite kind of day. I took these photos to remind my self to continuously look up and see the beauty that surrounds me. Barcelona is a beaut of a city, it really is. The history that surrounds everything is quite magical. So Sarie, don’t forget to look up and appreciate everything a little bit more.

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IMG_3977DSCF5429 DSCF5428 DSCF5426This is one of my very favourite little pockets in Barcelona, it reminds me of a scene of a book and the atmosphere is so good.

DSCF5433 DSCF5441 DSCF5438 DSCF5443These streets. I love just exploring and being in them and appreciating all its beautiful chaos. I also love the mundane every day bits of life, like hearing voices, seeing people chat on their mobile phones on their balconies, washing drying etc. I also love the pretty bits like flags and lights.

DSCF5444 DSCF5446 DSCF5450 DSCF5454 DSCF5457Unintentional beauty everywhere. Appreciating this city much more these days.

DSCF5429 IMG_3979 IMG_3977 DSCF5469Also look at all the small beautiful details, that you will find if you look hard enough.
DSCF5473 DSCF5474 IMG_3975IMG_3966 IMG_3965 IMG_3964 IMG_3963 IMG_3947La Virreina is one of my favourite places in Barcelona. Just off the chaotic, soulless Ramblas you will find this hidden gem of a building that encases a beautiful (free!!) gallery. I love its grandeur and the fact its peaceful space. We saw a brilliant exhibition on social documentary of Barcelona. It made me think how many beings this cities buildings and landscapes have seen. How many stories have unfolded. It makes you feel quite small actually.

We had very good burgers for lunch. Love going on lunch dates very much. Also love a good burger and this one I can recommend. Bocoa burger, a new one to add to my list.DSCF5462 DSCF5463After lunch we strolled (hobbled) down to La Central. This has become a bit of a tradition to browse this shop on a Saturday. Its one of my happy places. I love looking at all the illustrated novels/comics.
IMG_3969 IMG_3973 IMG_3968 IMG_3967This original Keith Haring wall <3

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So what was a total bummer of a week actually turned out alright, and I think that is key. Finding what makes you happy and doing it, no matter how hard it might be to do. We all need to appreciate things, live in the here and now and think about what makes us happy. For me its about appreciating the small moments and snippets and not always wanting more. Its being happy with what I have and aiming to make things better but not always looking at what I don’t have and want and trying to constantly grasp at it in the future tense. Its great to have aspirations and dreams and all that but I do think its a bit of the millennial curse is that we are never happy with our lot and constantly having to better ourselves and not taking the time to breathe and appreciate our lot. SO here is me taking a conscious step to live a little more in the moment and the here and now. See you next week!

Notes from this week/ Week in photos 13

NEWS FLASH! This weeks series is going to be #REALLIFE. Tune in next week for pretty photos and more fun vibes.
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So this week. A bit fat wobble of a week. The word of the week being HOSPITAL. I have been unable to escape it. Recovery also being a word of the week as well as wobble, emotional and useless.

Monday- Hospital appointment with my specialist that was quick and rushed > Home > Bed.
Tuesday- Bed and too tired to even move.
Wednesday- Operation/ Procedure day. Lots of lying on hospital beds and being wheeled about, prodded, scanned and poked. Left feeling in pain, dizzy and tired. They cleaned and swept my left knee with radioactive (!!!!) liquid to clean out all the bad inflammatory cells that attack my joints. My body creates these cells and they are evil. Why? Well we don’t know that yet. Monday is scan day and that will decide whether I have to continue with the same biological treatment as before or whether I will start with a new set of drugs. In the meantime its a waiting game. I am grateful that I am getting listened to and that this is being treated and that I am not just feeling like this is something I have done wrong and its all my fault (weird brain black holes where my thoughts disappear too!) Its also good to realise that this is REAL and not invented and as much as I have tried to hide it from people (especially at work) and am embarrassed by it it is there.
Thursday- Recovering at my inlaws. Being waited on hand and foot and being served food on a tray. Sleepy daze and barely human. I can’t describe how good it feels just to have someone looking after you and caring. I have missed this a lot as I tend just to get on with stuff here and try and ignore that I need that sometimes. I need to be spoilt and have “mimos”. It makes me feel weird to ask for help and I feel guilty that I am putting the other person out.
Friday- Yet more recovering and being spoilt. I got to go home in the evening though and had a dreamy sleep in my own bed with the pup and Borj.
Saturday- Sant Jordi and getting a rose. Also home made pizza club night ( a tradition in this house!).
Sunday- Yet more resting and netflixing and blog reading etc.
SO this week has been a tough one, one where it has made me feel not good enough and where I am the illness I have rather than Sarie who has this illness. I have wobbled and doubted and felt a whole lot of guilt and just felt like it has been too much. A drain on my loved ones and just in general a bit crap and useless. Next week shall be better and I can hopefully start to get out and about a bit more. I have also been quiet with a few of my projects because its ok to fall behind and allow my self time to recover, this doesn’t mean I am a massive failure (note to myself). Also all this time off is justified and medically backed up. Please remember this future Sarie if you are reading this!

So if I have been a crap friend/sister/daughter/colleague then I am sorry, I feel like I let a lot of people down and more than anyone myself.

 

Tick

A quick entry on time.
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I feel years fall like days. And days fall like years. The expression the days are long but the years are short. How apt I find myself thinking.
Everything around me is in constant flux and change is happening yet I feel I am wading through treacle to move the second hand on the clock just a tiny nudge. Life is on pause while everyone is around me getting married, starting families and going on big grand adventures. Whilst my little old body, aged before its time, sits whilst waiting seeps its way into my bones and eats away at them. The feeling of time rotting away at my insides, thick undergrowth and brambles growing around my bones. Making me feel suffocated and stuck. Making it harder to move from as they root me to this very spot.

The talk of change and future plans seem so distant and in the yonder when only spoken about minutes, hours ago, and then if by magic, suddenly those days turn into weeks that form months and then years.

Big heart wrenching occasions pass with the inevitable goodbyes that tug at the strings of my being, slowly pulling me down and making me miss and feel nostalgic for times that haven’t even happened yet.
Times that are spoken about wistfully, times that are spoken about with the gutsy confidence that comes with talking about very distant things gives you. The giddy excitement of a dream, plans and journeys (physical and mental). All spoken about with hope and joy. But its ok because they won’t happen for a while. There is still time, life still has time to happen, we still have so much time to be. Until the day arrives and its happened. And you are in the exact same situation with all those giddy plans but them still being so far out of reach. Hands flailing to catch at them, if you could just run that bit faster. But you can never run fast enough. You can always run a bit more tomorrow, until tomorrow and the day after and the day after that and so on have passed. Groundhog day. Energy rationed out like medicine. One bit today and the rest for another day.
Trapped by those seconds, minutes, hours, days months and years. All of that waiting and that never being. Its all so bittersweet. Trying your very damn hardest to enjoy it whilst it is here, this present. Thinking this could be the moment, this could be it. Although it never feels like it.
Trapped by that waking thought that life is exactly the same as when you last left it. Only the hands on the clock have been around way faster and many many times, there are new faces that look back at your older face. You awake and realise that you are 10 years older and wonder how you have slept walked through it all. Wading through thick syrupy time, eyes open but not really there. How did it happen? So you cling and grab onto little strings that hold you up, grasping at them. Clutching at any flicker of hope of excitement, that there is always some sort of plan waiting in the wings. Living on other peoples time and lives, watching through tired eyes. Happy to be there along for the ride but sad that its never really you. Happy that the ones you love so dearly are doing this thing called living so well. Happy that they spend their time so wisely.
And you wonder when will it be my second, minute, hour, day, month and year? Maybe tomorrow…

This is a little piece I wrote in 5 minutes hunched over my phone, it is what I felt in that moment (and do still feel). I am OK, despite it seeming quite dramatic. I am ok.

Weekly: The good things

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Why hello there FRI-YAY! I wanted to do another little weekly round up of good things to remind me of THE GOOD THINGS in life. I bloody need the remind to be honest. I thought I would try to illustrate them. I had a major melt down paddy at drawing my beloved PJ Harvey. I officially can’t draw PJ. She is too good to put into drawing form (I just ain’t got the skillz). I will be drawing more of my girl-heroes! I have a plenty. Lets not hope I get the strops like this time though…

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Oh Polly Jean you sure do own a piece of my black little heart. I have seen her twice in my life, both times amaazing (she was wearing a spice girl dress for one performance!). BUT this album reaches somewhere deep in my marrow and stays there. I love it. It has to be one of the best from the past 5 years if not more. Its so hauntingly beautiful and the lyrics (as always is the case with PJ) are amazing. One of my favourite albums ever and ever so fitting for my weird longing for my isle. Watch all the video’s in this playlist and listen to the full album. It will take you on a journey of an archaic English adventure.
60s

I have always and forever been obsessed with the 1960’s. I kind of wish I was around to document this time and see and feel it with my own eyes. It seems like such an important changeable time. I also just love any of the imagery and iconography that comes with it.

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I obviously have many a image from this era, I shall dedicate a whole blog post to it in time.
But for now check out my pinterest board for more beauts.
Follow Sarie’s board Sixties on Pinterest.

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So this is a dedication to my tools and my deepest love for what they allow me to do and for all things stationary (it says pencils above not penises…)

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Again, this is just a taster of a blog post that is to follow. I want to do one about my favourite tools and pens and pencils that I use as an artist/illustrator/maker/experimenter person. Above is my favourite pen that is from Muji. Its an indian ink filled brush pen thing. So handy and such a time saver. Its my go to pen at the moment and has heavily influenced my work as of late. The other thing pictured is my muji mechanical clicky pencil thing. Its my dream pencil and everything looks better sketched out in it. Also pictured is my beloved ink well. I love love love ink. Its dark splodgy messy marks makes everything look how I imagine it in my head. Had a terrible paddy fit of a day yesterday (as mentioned above…) when nothing comes out of my hands like it is pictured in my head and this makes me SAD and RAGEY. I hate that feeling of uselessness. It has passed though (sort of).

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I have also been loving and I mean LOVING with all my heart this series on bbc 4. Its about artists. I have reawakened my belief in what is my calling in life and what I should be doing and I don’t think I can let anything get in that way any longer. So inspired and so refreshing, here are two of my very very favourites:

Tracey was (and is still) my hero when I was 15/16/17. Her work seemed to really speak to me visually and meaningfully. I love her so so much. She is such a special weirdo and tells her unique sad and powerful story in such a way. Flaws and all. (thats what makes her so strong).

This makes for a slightly awkward viewing but I love love these two. Brilliance. Watch on the BBC if you are in the UK.

This obvs falls under the musica section however also here because it is so much more:

 

Lastly, here are my current favourite beauty products, will do another PROPER post soon on these but for now here is the illustrated version.

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