10 years FREElance.
If I was in a traditional job I’d get a handshake or a gold watch or maybe a corner office and promotion, so in lieu of those traditions I’ll just sit here and reminisce.
These recaps usually take a few weeks to write, which come after a few months to process the year that was. I’ve been asked why I don’t have these Year in Reviews up earlier in the year as surely it’s "not that hard to bang together a highlight blurb and link", and I couldn’t come up with a response other than I get busy and it falls to the wayside.
While this is mostly true, it actually weighs on my mind, and there is no perfect time to just write. God knows I could fill in the render time between edits where I watch a short clip on YouTube and write one of the highlights, meaning it would be done in a few days, but I also need to decompress from the year that was and have the headspace to look back, fresh.
That’s as far as I got into the ‘intro’ several months ago. I started writing in February, then tried again in March when the world shut down with the Covid-19 pandemic.
Through April and May I’d been feeling a slight sense of alarm for my career and industry as a whole when we come out of this darkness. I try to stay a step behind showering myself with praise even for the projects I’m most proud of which takes some refining - when asked about Duct Tape Surfing I respond ‘easiest film I’ve ever made, just pointed the camera at them and they did their thing’.
So when it came to writing about 19 projects from last year, with the current economic and public health crisis looming I just couldn’t ‘git er done’ as Coach Taylor would encourage/threaten.
I’ve heard a bunch of inspiring stories from the pandemic, from communities coming together and holding ‘social distanced street parties’ to reconnecting through conversation to close friends who would normally just text and enjoying the free flowing dialogue. Simple changes to everyday life shone some light in the darkness. Looking inward and at the past 12 months of absolute change in my life that has only been strengthened through the lockdown & industry downturn and it’s taken until August to realise there’s only one story that truely gets my fingers tapping from 2019.
Kora came into our lives at 4am on the 29th of May. I was as prepared as any other new dad, totally clueless/shitscared/panicking/diditurnthelightsoff but thankful everything went like clockwork and both Millie and Kora were amazing.
In that instant my life reached a level I never knew was possible; heck, four years ago I lived in a van and now have a wife, house, and daughter. And I wouldn't change a thing.
Truth be told, with the increased sense of responsibility to keep the lights on and food on the table for the past 18 months I’ve been the ‘yes man’, putting aside my personal creative endeavours to chase the paycheque. I’ve still managed to kick a few career goals thanks to amazing clients and legendary friends including me in their crew, but if there’s anything I’ve learned after several months of self reflection the part of my life I’m most proud of is these two.
(2019 project highlights are on the home page, if y’all want a look :)