Thursday, August 30, 2012

France, Freelance, and Taking Chances

[ breadcrumbs ] 

Images from my Year in Provence
and the inspiration for the 'Bonjouryall' logo.

I seem to be attracted to contrast.

But I also believe we inherently know the decisions we should make, if we could just calm the outer voices and expectations — and logic — long enough to actually trust and follow them.

My first year of college happened to also be the launch of Nike's "Just Do It" campaign. A breadcrumb?

I had chosen to begin college in a beautiful small-town two-year college in North Georgia, my soul needed that place. The aesthetic. The independence. The familiar. Then for the last two years of college, I opted for the most dramatic move of my life up to that point. At 18yrs old, never having been north of Kentucky, I moved north to Chicago to finish school at the Art Institute. This carbonated the waters of my life, my soul needed that. I began my creative career. New friendships. Navigated and survived my 20's. And began traveling to what I often called "the motherland:"  France.

One day it hit me (like the acme steel ball in the Road Runner cartoons) that I needed to be in that country for more than just a vacation. I needed to live there. My soul needed to see the world from another country. But how? Marry a french man? [sigh] No. School? Sure, but I'm too old (this thought -- at the ripe old age of 28. Ha). Okay, school it was. And so I moved to Aix-en-Provence and painted, traveled, and shot photos for a year in Provence.


Upon returning to the states I became an Art Director and Creative Spark at Disney. But this was in Florida which doesn't have the culture, change of seasons, and history, that my soul craves.

So never having lived in DC and not knowing a soul up here, I moved up to work as an Art Director with Discovery Channel. Then the economy impacted things and as I transitioned out of Discovery, I followed an itching in my soul to branch out on my own.

Working solo. Loved it.

I have been working as a freelance creative in the DC area for over four and a half years and these have been some of the most life-molding years of my life. Working solo, running my business, navigating a relationship, social media kicked-in and I've rekindled old friendships, have had many opportunities to see family and friends, sisters' weddings and later two nieces and a nephew. Sort out my priorities. And settle into who I am. Life, unchained.

Feels almost like sifting out the 'gunk' of life -- and finding who you are. My soul needed that.


After leaving my work at Discovery, who knew what would unfold from there? Not me.

But there is a beautiful postcard I picked up while living in France. Picasso, "If we know exactly where we're going [and what's going to happen], why go?" Indeed.

And it was, in addition to my base of current clients, through a site actually called while freelancing, where I came upon several new clients.

Initially they were seeking to fill full-time positions, but we would go on to work together on a freelance basis over the past couple years. Then one of my best clients, who I initially found through that site, enthusiastically invited me to come on board full-time with them.

And I accepted.

I will begin work with them in September and I am thrilled and ready to take this new chance — in a company that is welcoming, sharp, fresh, and in the heart of DC — and I am excited to see where life turns next. 

But of course, I don't want the answer to that...

I'll find out soon enough.

Faith in God is also faith in his timing.
Trust. Be bold. Take chances. Live.

...just do it.

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