I’ve been thinking about experimentation lately. Not, I rush to add, in any illicit sense, but rather in the regards to trying new things. I think it is very easy to find yourself in a comfortable rut: you know exactly what you’re doing, how you’re going to do it, and you no longer have to activate your brain in order to do so. And sometimes, depending on the situation, perhaps that’s exactly what’s needed. Maybe there’s a task you can do with your eyes closed, something that has been honed to perfection with trial and error that there is no further need to innovate. But quite often it’s necessary to shake things up, look at a subject from a new angle, or strive for better ways of doing things.
Take, for example, blogging. I have been running the Rubbish Walks blog for over two years, writing about what we find on Community Clean Ups and our own personal rubbish walks, as well as my miscellaneous thoughts about litter. It was time to reach a bit further, so I recently launched #LitterWatch2017, an actual experiment. This is a step into the unknown: I’m not sure what is going to happen throughout the year nor can I plan ahead to write the weekly updates. It’s a bit outside my comfort zone, but the results have already been encouraging as it’s helped rekindle my curiosity about a topic I thought I’d exhausted.
It has also inspired me to think about my crafts in a new way. While the tag design has already undergone an evolution from curved to contemporary, single hole to double, twine to ball chain, I am now rethinking the packaging. How can I make something that wouldn’t look out of place at WHSmith or Paperchase? How can I make sure people can find me again after making a purchase? How can I reduce my dependency on plastic? The use of cello
bags in particular has always rubbed me the wrong way; necessary perhaps for single cards, but I am sure there is a better way to package card sets. So my challenge for 2017? Experiment more and worry about failure less.
Also for 2017: Experimenting with new card designs!