Since I arrived to live and work in Purbeck, Dorset at the end of August 2016 my life has changed several times.
September to November 2016
School teacher continuing into my 29th year as a teacher.
November 2016 to January 2017
Nervous breakdown (two in fact) and looking for a new direction.
January 31 2017 to present
Start to use the term artist for myself and producing work and selling it to others
March 2017 to September 2019
Seasonal job for Wareham Boat Hire, using my knowledge of kayaking and rowing especially. Working 6 months of the year outdoors and often standing in the river Frome.
September 2016 to October 2019
Joined and rowed with Swanage Sea Rowing Club and got to see the Jurassic coast from the water.
November 2016 to present
Attended Swanage Depression Support Group and then Wareham Depression Support Group and now act as fill in facilitator for Wareham.
July 2019 to present
Got involved in retraining at my own kayaking skills and developing a new love for sea kayaking which is now going to replace gig rowing for my water sports time.
The change from Geography teacher to artist has been the biggest change. I have now taken part as an Open Studio in Purbeck Art Weeks (PAW) for three consecutive years. I now have my work in the Purbeck Artisan Yard in Wareham where I joined the co-operative in March 2018. I currently have a solo exhibition in the cafe at RSPB Arne due to the link with PAW. I have work with a friend’s business in Lytchett Minster. I am about to take part in my third Artisans on the Beach in Swanage, the last two of which have been as a member of the organising working party. This weekend on November 2nd I took the keys of a shop in Swanage in partnership with one of my fellow Artisan Yard artists. So now a part time shopkeeper.
This new role means that the boat job will go as I am only willing to work part time so that Anne and I can enjoy the remainder of the week doing activities together.
So let’s see where the new adventure leads . . .
Posted in about, art, exercise, geography, Mental health, News / blog, Post teaching, sport, Wellbeing #Nurture1415 #Teacher5aday
Tagged artist, boats, change, sea kayaking, shop keeper
Hello mishmashlearning, not seen you for a while. I now blog more frequently about my art through http://www.andyknillart.com.
So December – last year I took part in an event in Swanage calls Artisans on the Beach for 7 weeks. By the end of it I was announced as Artisan of the Year and it was suggested I should be on the committee / working group for the proposed 2018 event.
It is now 2018, I am one of two artisans on the working group. This year the Artisans on the Beach event started on December 1 and finishes on January 2nd after about 5.5 weeks. I have also become named event organiser from the artisan aspect and taken on tasks including the social media marketing on Facebook and Instagram.
I have at last arrived at that old phrase transferable skills – organisation, spreadsheets, social media work etc , when someone praised my organisation skills I was at pains to point out the demands were less than those needed for a days teaching. I am enjoying my role and will be asked no to be considered to repeat the role for 2019 and possibly subsequent years.
My art is also found at the Purbeck Artisan Yard, Wareham. There I have found myself producing admin. Documents again for the same reasons and those skills again. My artwork is d finitely selling more in my second year. I have greatly increased the range of my work available and initiatives like Christmas cards started for December 2017 now account for a third of my card sales of over £2k.
I am back doing winter training with Swanage Sea Rowing and haven’t injured myself so far, so fitness is increasing gradually. I hope in 2019 to be out exercising much more.
Memories – December has been a difficult time for my family the last two years. Mum passed away in 2016 and last year at this time I sat by Dad’s side before he passed away on Christmas Day. I had a dip thinking about this last week while at the huts one day. I now feel in a better place but will miss the family gathering in Broadstairs even though I found them hard myself from a mental health perspective. Mum and Dad both believed in an afterlife, so I hope they can communicate with each other easily again and are happy with what they see their offspring up to these days. Clearing the family base as it is now sold (almost) turned up many memories and items from their lives and their families too.
My eldest has made changes in his life this year but is still difficult to communicate with, I wish him all the best and stay in contact when possible. My youngest took on a job this year and has shown much maturity about work and maturing in some ways. My mother in law at 96 continues to thrive but it would have been nice for where we live now for her to have retained more of her sight so that she could see the birds and wildlife more easily.
Finally Anne, my fab wife of 25 years now who I am getting to know again now that work is not a barrier that separates me from the family as it had a tendency to do when teaching.
So Christmas Day rest well washing up for me tomorrow. Then back to the hut but hopefully a focus on positive memories.
Seasons greetings to anyone that still follows this blog.