2015 will be life changing for me for two reasons. The first being that I'm planning to go back to art college in September to do a part-time MA in Illustration. I'll be more than twice the age of most of my fellow student but the prospect of spending two years studying and experimenting in a community of artists is utterly thrilling.
The second life changing event is the Black Barn Studio.
Many of us dream of building a home but few of us will have the opportunity. I have bought the mags and watched the TV shows and suffered the crippling jealousy of wondering what it would be like to be one of those lucky self builders. I was resigned to the fact that as a freelance author and illustrator I'd never have the dosh to be one of them.
But all that changed last year when my parents offered the bottom of their garden as a building plot and I began to look at the feasibility of actually owning that dream studio.
It's taken a while to get the project off the ground - finding a builder, designing for the plot, getting planning permission - but now my cottage is sold (nearly) to raise the finance and the final engineering drawings are being prepared - so I'm allowing myself to get excited about really really being one of those lucky self builders!
Over the next few months I will document every stage of the build from groundwork to studio-warming party and today I'm clearing the plot and planting a hedge. Not glamorous, I know, but it's the very first real job I've done on site. I also spoke to my solicitor today and it looks like I might complete the sale of my cottage by the end of May (that's the plan) so we could be breaking ground at the beginning of June! Hurrah!
I shall keep you posted.