So, the London Marathon is postponed. As are lots of other races, and I’m sure I’m feeling similar emotions to many folks who were looking forward to racing.
To be honest, today I’m actually feeling some sense of relief. I’ve been waking up at 2 AM and checking the feeds to see if other races were being cancelled. And each time another major city announced, it made me feel more and more certain this news was coming.
So I’m feeling stoic. The greater certainty is better than not knowing whether to push on with the training and fundraising or not.
There are more important and, frankly frightening, things going on in the world right now. It’s a luxurious position to be in to even be able to have the time in our weekly schedules to be able to take on these running challenges. …
It was the end of the Summer, and a switch labelled “go for a run” seemed to flip on in my head. That switch is still stuck in the “on” position six months later!
This week I heard that I have a place in this year’s London Marathon, so I thought I’d share my running story from couch to track, and why I’m running to raise awareness about autism.
I’ve never really been a long-distance runner, or indeed someone who would even refer to themselves and include the word “run” anywhere.
At school (that was a long time ago now!) I used to enjoy sprinting. I was pretty fast, but I was injured in a race at about 16 and never really ran again. …
A year ago I left a well-paid tech job to turn a side-project into a business. I’ve started and grown several businesses, with some success, some failure and a lot of learning in between. This time, though, I’m taking a very different approach.
Makelight, the learning community we’ve set up, is a collaboration with my wife, Emily. We’re a family of six. We’re working from home. We’re not doing this with any investment behind us (yet!) and a few of our priorities are very different to what I was trying to achieve with previous ventures.
Last year, a week or so after going “all in” with Emily, I…
For the last couple of years, Makelight, the learning community that I help run has been really growing. It’s turned into a wonderfully supportive and collaborative membership.
Each month we pick a topic to focus on. A theme for us to explore that will help us grow as people and/or business-owners, understand and develop our creativity, and to achieve a little work/life balance in this busy world!
The focus for May 2017 is blogging, and we’re calling it The Thread. We’re running a series of lessons all about the writing process, how to technically set up a decent blog, and how to run one for the long term, hopefully avoiding falling into the writing doldrums. …
Today I was flicking through a book on the Japanese artist Hokusai with my daughter. He’s most well known for this image, which I’m sure you’ve seen:
We looked through his images, talked about the beautiful way he captured the movement of water, the sense of space and depth, how perfectly he drew petals on flowers… and then we read this paragraph together:
From the age of six I was in the habit of drawing all kinds of things. …
This time last year my wife, Emily and I were kicking off an experiment to answer a fairly big question:
Could we combine both of our creative energies to find a way to make a living that lines up with family life, working on what we both enjoy and are passionate about?
That experiment, to build an online learning site and a suite of useful tools for primarily creative, female entrepreneurs, Instagrammers and bloggers has changed both of our lives in a very short space of time!
We’ve learnt a lot, grown an awesome (tiny) team and gathered an inspiring, supportive community together (thank you, you wonderful people!). I’m now working with Emily full time and our only source of income is our fledgling business, Makelight. …
For the last few months I’ve been unusually quiet online.
I’ve been keeping up my usual rate of life-observations and banter on my Twitter account, but other than that I’ve been keeping myself to myself.
“What have you been up to recently?” has become a common conversation starter from friends. I’ve been filling people in on what I’ve been doing in person, but not online, until now.
Don’t worry, I’m not doing the “stealth mode” thing. So what’s this new found quietness about? …
Commuting, for those of us who must do it every day, is generally not an experience to be relished. The hours lost in a useless limbo travelling to the workplace and back, day in, day out, are not generally ones that are well-spent or enjoyable.
In the past, my family and I have moved town, in part because The Commute was getting us all down. Mainly me, because over recent years I’ve been the one doing the daily slog in and out of the city.
I’ve tried lots of things to make the experience more bearable. For a few years I’d use a 30-minute train journey to be productive on the laptop, coding a feature for the project I was working on. But after too many near-miss experiences trying to perch a laptop on my lap among the crowd of tired fellow commuters, I gave that up. …
Growing up in the eighties I was lucky to be part of a generation that was encouraged to be creative with new technology — consumer computers and robots were in their infancy and had just become accessible to children.
That early exposure to playing with computers sent me down the path of studying computer science, but also experimenting around applying technology in art.
I distinctly remember trying to explain to my school why I wanted to study double maths, physics and art. “Art? That doesn’t fit into the time table, sorry”. It was as if computing and art were seen as entirely separate disciplines. So I left that school and took a path that enabled me to explore both sides of my personality. …
The idea of Makeshift was to try out many tiny “hacks” and turn the best ones into digital products that could become businesses.
Year one was all about invention — we sketched up about fifty ideas, and did twelve prototypes.
Year two was all about choosing what to focus on and converting the best of those prototypes into businesses, shelving the ones that looked least promising.