This past year has been fast and furious. I took on as many projects as possible to see the range of types of projects I wanted to work on. I don’t expect this career to be easy, but I need to remember why I got into in the first place. It’s easy to fall into the trap of creating cookie cutter work instead of taking the time to invent and reinvent myself and the work.
The first time I heard of taking a year sabbatical was from Stefan Sagmeister in the Great Discontent. He describes the risk of deciding to take a year off, but also the rewards of doing so for the years afterwards. I thought this was a brilliant idea - combining leisure, learning, experimentation, travel and creativity all into one year. I’ve had this idea sitting in my head for a couple years that I would try it out and see if it is for me.
My hopes for the year are to come back reinvigorated, with more focus and a body of creations and experiences that I can look back fondly on. I want to meet, see, and experience the most out of my time and live by my philosophy that work to live, not live to work.
Becoming more connecting with my Chinese & Peruvian cultures have been a consistent theme throughout most of my adult life. Having been to Peru a couple times in the past, I knew I wanted to spend more time here learning about where my parents come from. Even in just the past weeks, I’ve noticed some of the cultural influences that have shaped my life. Things like chatting over long lunches with family, an obsession with all things food, hilarious jokes that don’t translate well in english and of course speaking Spanish.
I believe that creation and self exploration come hand in hand. To understand what and how we create, we need to have an understanding why we create and where it comes from. And of course, the words that make
I’ve dubbed this the month of the language.
This past month has been packed with Spanish classes with the hopes of gaining some more fluency by the end of the year. I’m not going to lie, it’s been sooo much harder than I remember Highschool Spanish to be. When I look back, it was kind of a joke. What’s interesting (beyond learning about the language) is getting to learn about Peruvian and Latin culture through the language. I’ve been learning to appreciate nuances in why people are perhaps the way they are, because of how their language shapes them. For example, I find Peruvian humor to be hilarious, clever and witty in ways that English is not. There’s a certain directness and calling things by what they appear to be in Peruvian culture that I appreciate.
At the end of the week we’ll be leaving the coastal beauty of Lima and touring the South to Cusco, Machu Picchu and Arequipa. For sure I’ll be missing the coastal sunsets from my uncles apartment, but it’ll be nice to get out of the busy city and into some quieter areas on the country. On to the next!