My socks are in order

Carrot Media LtdSometimes you just need a good ‘ol post with a really weird title, however it does have meaning behind it. I’ve spent the past 5 or so months wearing odd socks, not just literally but also mentally. Covering too many roles without too much time had me ran ragged, I was constantly tired without being able to focus properly on everything as well as I should have been.

My focus was diluted by the stress and tiredness that ensued and until recently it was only going to get worse, until something happened.

My life was made easier

Justin and I sat down and realised that the best way forward was to employ a new member to the team at Carrot Media. Ryan Downie and I had been talking for some time over Skype and I immediately thought of him as my preferred choice. Young, talented and able to communicate well, it would be an ideal choice to build my team. A couple of weeks later, the FOWD Leeds Tour was taking place and it was a perfect team to discuss what we were going to be up to over the next few weeks.

Know when to start managing

Natural progression, get over it. It happens. The roles I was talking about earlier, they change as well. The natural progression is constantly changing my core skills as a designer, marketing bod and manager. Listening to Colly at FOWD last week talking about his role within Erskine made me think about my own role at Carrot, and how over the next few months I will be changing. With the addition of Ryan to the team it means I can concentrate more on the things I love within the business whilst working on the creative strategy for businesses we look after.

My socks are in order

So my socks are finally in order when tonight while sorting out some clothes I finally matched up 3 pairs, something which I’ve not been able to do for months.

What a year

Although I never wrote a 2007 blog post I thought that this year was more pertinent than the last. So much has happened and so much has changed from the start of the year, its been a heavy whirlwind of excitement, joy, fun and busy time.

Back in February I talked about nvmax and how much I missed the old days of being a part of a bigger web community centralised around one subject. I dabbled with the idea of revisiting those times and setting up a new nvmax. After chatting with Andrew (the original founder) about doing just that we decided that it would be extremely difficult to build up our contact list again as so much time had passed. Not going ahead with it wasn’t a major issue as my diary was jam packed with other things that I didn’t know what to do at that present moment in time.

I’ve now taken a role of Creative Director at a Newcastle Design Agency called carrotmedia. This was something that came out of left field and wasn’t planned, it fell into place. I believe in fate and things that happen will happen regardless of what you try to do.

Over the year the whole team has been through a lot at carrot,we’ve launched some pretty nifty websites like Victor, Designer Desirables, Poplar Tree Garden Centre and Brambledown to name but a few. We’ve got a wild client base ranging from Industrial underwater equipment to a holiday let in Italy and an awesome cosmetic dentists. Every day is different and I love it for being just that. The clients I work with are tremendous.

Something majorly changed in 2008, I’ve grown in confidence. Whilst I believe I am fairly confident, there were certain issues I had to deal with personally and one of those was my work. The growth in confidence is shown by the fact that I’ve now started opening up quite a lot and showcasing my work which I’ve not done before. Together with uploading my designs to flickr and being showcased on various CSS Galleries it does give you a sense of pride and the thought that you’re headed in the right direction with the work you’re producing.

I setup Validation Icons in 2007 however it didn’t have as much of an impact than I thought it would and because of this I redesigned the siteĀ  in 2008 which brought a ton of traffic. Since its launch the website has been showcased on a number of CSS Galleries as well as the icons being showcased on various design resource websites. It’s an honor and I hope in future the icons can be of some use to someone. I’ll be developing some new icons in 2009 so watch out for them.

I changed the design of my blog after a long wait, the original was held together with shoe strings and bubble gum and was plainly not robust enough for the amount of things I wanted to do with it. I opted to go with WooThemes, I’ve admired the work the guys are doing over there for a while now and had to tell everyone why I’m overeasy. Although I have a strange stance on premium themes which I will be writing about in the New Year.

In November I launched, it’s a mix of showcasing, resources, interviews and freebies. It houses everything under one roof and the Interviews are going well. It will grow more through 2009 so I’m looking forward to that.

And now it’s Christmas, it’s time to relax, enjoy and look forward to a busy 2009.