Contact Info / Websites
In order to make pretty things and eventually become a graphic designer, I've started being more serious about practicing relevant skills.
More specifically, I've started taking drawing more seriously. At my job, work heavily depends on what's going on around the station - if nothing's happening, there's simply nothing to make. To fill the downtime with something productive and keep myself from stagnating, I started doing casual drawing gestures. A gesture is a 30-120 second drawing of an action, pose, expression, motion. The idea is to jot down the essentials and then moving on, and I've found I'm becoming more and more steady on anatomy because of it.
I set myself the goal to draw something every day, and reduce time wasted. This one year as a conscript will be the only time in my life where my only responsibility is waking up and going to work so I want to make the best out of it.
Almost five months in my mandantory service, I'm still convinced getting drafted is the best thing that has happened to me.
Before, I had no plans, dreams, hopes or thoughts concerning my future. As far as I was concerned, the future was just a black hole ahead of me, which I was better off avoiding completely. Days, weeks, months passed. Each and every day a waste, which I gradually ended up despising myself for. As that happened, I felt guilty for feeling bad - knowing that I live in such great circumstances I shouldn't even have the right to feel so bad.
This, combined with my fear for the future resonated with each other. The self hate grew exponentially over last fall, and I isolated myself so as to not have to deal with any of it.
Boot Camp Reboot
Starting as a recruit at boot camp was in complete contrast to everything I had experienced before. Regardless of the initial shock, I felt I fit right in to the military format. I had no problem following orders and giving 100% every day - a skill that was necessairy to keep spirit up with long, hard days, and officers yelling.
In the beginning I thought I'd work hard so as to not get a really shitty job (like being a guard), but after a while they released a list of positions available for applying to. Amongst many others, there were one opening for a graphic designer.
Now, before this I though "as long as I get a roof over my head and an internet connection, I'll be fine", and those were my only criterias and goals that drove me to do my best. After I found out I could work directly towards my goal and build up plans for my future again, I sparked and went out of my way to make sure I'd definitely get that position.
At the time, we were something between 500 and 750 recruits at the camp so I knew the competition would be tough, should just a few of them apply. I would have to be number 1. The best. In the end I never got to know how many applied. I've spoken to a few that admitted they'd applied, but according to the administration here there wasn't really a contest.
Service and Summary
I've been working as a graphic designer for almost three months at the time of writing this, and I've come to realize I've grown a lot as a person these last five months. I've learnt a lot about myself and my career of choice, and I'm confident I have lot coming up for me during my stay here.
More than anything else, I'm thankful for being pulled out of my personal evil spiral, and to have some meaning to my days and life. I'm positive towards my future and I've got a clear idea on what it looks like.
I'm staring at a crossroad at the horizon, a crossroad with three paths with different perks and drawbacks. I'm bound by duty to serve my one year mandatory service, but after that, what am I to do?
My main goal is to one day become a graphic designer.
With that in mind, I'm already in a perfect position. Every day I get nuggets of real work experience that is so hard to get in this business. I would be crazy not to appreciate how lucky I am to get to be in this position!
- My first and preferred option is to persuade my superior to create an opening for me as an intern. Having work experience on my CV is well and all, but in the end I'm just serving my mandatory service and if I weren't here to do it, anyone else could've filled the spot - Being able to tell potential future employers that "I'm so good they made an internship opening just for me" would be very impressive, and at the end of the internship I would get a certificate saying I'm a competent graphic designer, which would make for a complete education.
- The second, and most likely outcome is I don't impress my superior enough for him to create an internship opening for me (apparently it's really quite a bother to make). I'd have half a year free, and I'd go back to school, finishing my education. Since I dropped out of the third year of "videregående" school, and since I'm serving my conscription, I've essentially wasted three years in terms of education, and I won't get to apply for a higher education until I finish that. The obvious downside of this is that the education I'd get would be extremely general and uninteresting. Even with a year of military discipline I think it'll be difficult to stay focused throughout the year.
- The third and unconventional option is to apply for officers education. It's a completely different path and it has nothing to do with graphic design. However, having an officers education is a bit prestigious in Norway, and if I were to return to a career as a graphic designer, it may be of drastic help when it comes to getting higher positions (senior graphic designer, art director ...). The officers education also opens for a lot of different and exciting jobs within the Norwegian Armed Forces, but I'm not going to go too much in detail on that.
Thus far, I've concluded these are my options. My personal goal for this year is therefore to minimize idle hours. I want to go back to actively drawing/designing/animating whenever I'm on my computer, and to spend a solid amount of hours in the gym, preparing for an eventual officers education and building up my body as I go. I know that it's impossible to spend every breathing moment productively; one gets tired eventually. I don't want to get burnt out after a hour, day, week, month or year - however I do want to keep wasted hours to a minimum. Maybe I can use the two wildly different goals as a good basis for everyday variation.
On top of that there's a social part. Varying between sitting at my computer alone and working out alone isn't very socially desirable or healthy. There's this whole situation where I have a lot of friends still in touch with eachother, and me being out of loop. I want to get back in the loop, and maybe even build up the crippled relationship between me and my (ex?) friends.
As you can see I have a ton of time, lots of ambitions and only so much motivation. I've no idea if it's even possible but I really really really want to sort my life out before I get out of here!
tl;dr: I'm living in the safe haven that is the air force. I need to sort my life out, get back on my feet and start taking control before my service here ends.
Jan 25: I won't be posting for at least a few months as I'm serving my mandantory conscription.
Feb 08: I got a position in the air force as a graphic designer at Ørland Main Air Station, there was only one slot available for that particular position so I'm thrilled I got what I wanted! I'll have a week off starting Feb 27 before they send me up there. Can't wait to get some real experience in what I hope to be my future profession!
Feb 27: I'm on leave until I start at my new position March 10th - It's great to have some free time considering the especially rough field week all recruits have to go through! I'm very tired of the recruit and I'm glad it's over though I look back at it as a good experience. These last two months has helped me in many ways and I have grown a lot as a person. I think I'm well prepared for whatever I'm faced with once I arrive at Ørland!
March 16: This day marks the end of my first week here! As expected, it's a lot more relaxed than the recruit but one thing I didn't anticipate was that the people here are much friendlier than at the recruit!
The job is alright - it's more or less as expected. The things I didn't think of was I'd have so much to do with printing. Most of the work I make here is going to be for print, in contrast to when I was home where I usually dealt with screen material. I also expected to have to work as a journalist in some cases, but there are two soliders in my department whose job is exclusively dealing with journalism and information. Another thing I was afraid of is that would have to do video productions, or start taking lots of pictures. Lucky for me, there's a giant archive readily available with lots of pictures, and my officer told me I won't have much to do with video productions!
I'll update my tumblr with productions every once in a while, as well as come with monthly updates here!
You can ask any questions you might have in the comments.
_________________________________________ . . _________________________________________
My SO had a seizure and is in recovery, I was there when it happened but it just feels sort of surreal thinking back - I'm glad I had friends around there to help me.
I can't help but feel guilty for ever hour/day I don't visit, but I'm told he pretty much constantly has visitors so at least there's that. It really does give you some perspective experiencing something like that first-hand. I lived in this bubble where I'd take some precautions and assume "everything will work out". Major accidents and injury are for "other people", and there's no way it'll happen to me any time soon.
Of course, it sounds very melodramatic when I isolate it and put in in words, but in truth I'm happy most of the time. He's alive and recovering, and I'm perfectly healthy myself. He should be fully recovered by summer, and completely off meds in five years. All-in-all "everything will work out" seems like an appropriate mantra, except it doesn't always work out the way I hoped.
I am a Norwegian graphic-design student - I like looking at good design, it makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.
My hobbies are drawing and playing piano.
My boyfriend had a seizure recently (thoughts regarding that here), turns out he has epilepsy.
I'm drafted for the Norwegian air defence. Service due January 2014.
Ask me anything!
And so is this!