I finally moved this blog to my own website, http://johannahoerrmann.de. Do come over and have a look!
P.S.: Thanks, tumblr, for kicking this off. Good times.
Only a couple of weeks to go - or maybe even shorter! Amazing. Crazy. Scary. Wonderful. Exciting. Awesome.
In the past few months, I have discovered and rediscovered a couple of community websites I enjoy. Maybe you will, too!
I first came across this „community driven visual potluck“ early 2008 and rediscovered it just a couple of weeks ago. I love browsing the site for inspiring food photos, yummy recipes and new-to-me food blogs at the end of my work day just before dinner time. Can anyone say hunger-driven?
Pinterest has already made the round through various blogs, and deservedly so: a nice, clean service to bookmark favorite images that are linked back to their source. I frantically (and successfully!) searched the web for a way to access this invitation-only community last summer, as I thought this could be the perfect way to collect ideas for our summer wedding party in one spot. It was indeed. I have yet to fully embrace the idea for other fields of life, but enjoy the sporadic emails notifying me someone liked or repinned one of the wedding ideas I found helpful last year. Tis the season, I guess! (Oh, and in case you want in on the fun, too - just leave a comment and I’ll send you an invite.)
My (or rather: Nils’) newest discovery of the lot, and one with a bigger purpose: Zootool is a service to collect (and track) bookmarks, images and other media snippets (developed in Germany - neat!). In some ways similar to Pinterest, I use it solely to save bookmarks and provide them with context (tags and notes). This could be yet another community to get lost in, but the really cool thing is that Nils is working on a way to automatically include saved links into my (and his) future blog stream. So the flow might look something like this: An article sparks my interest in Reeder (my RSS reader), one of the apps of Read it Later (my reading list for articles I want to, uh, read later) or Safari, I then click on the Zootool button (can you see the tiny Z in the upper right corner of my screenshots?) to save the link together with some tags and a short note and the whole thing is then posted to my blog to share it with you and save it for me. I can hardly wait.
A post on designsponge reminded me of being a knitter today. I started knitting in 2006 and have since spent many fall, winter and spring evenings as well as four months of train and bus commute during an internship in 2008 knitting away on scarves, hats, wristwarmers and even a pullover or two. But not this past winter. Or fall. Or spring, come to think of it. The knitting bug left me late 2009 or early 2010, in the midst of finishing up a grey cardigan modeled after a knit by Brooklyn Tweed (one of the few men designing patterns for other men out there) for Nils. Around the time I was figuring out the right size for a bolero for my sister, and the urge and joy to knit slowly slipped through my fingers. Maybe it was diving into work life after university that left so little head space for other things. Or maybe I just needed a really long pause to rediscover this craft. During the last few weeks, I sewed in the missing cardigan zipper and have at least considered the next step to finish that bolero jacket, but have yet to actually pick up a knitting needle again. My local yarn store, Stil Blüte Handarbeit & Co. (I still really like that site we created, Nils!) is hosting a knitting party next Tuesday and I said I’d attend. Who knows? This might be just the right time to become a knitter again.
The cape pictured above is the knitted item I have by far worn the most. I didn’t expect it to be, but I wear it nearly every day working away in front of the screen. Photo taken early 2009.
This is week 19 of carrying around this little person growing inside of me. It still feels so new and precious, leaving me a wee bit shy to share. All I can think of to write is this song line that’s been stuck in my head for months: Yummy yummy yummy I got love in my tummy …
So exciting. So new. So crazy happy to grow a family of three.
We need to talk. Don’t worry, no kicking you out now that we’ve made it this far. I honestly wasn’t sure if we’d stick around long enough to witness (or, in my case, actually write) post no. 59 - or even post no. 3! It took us 10 months, but here we are. Whew! Remember those issues we had earlier this year? The fun times of not-being-able-to-log-on and oh-tumblr-is-down-again? And again? So yeah … times are a-changing. Let’s leave this tumblr theme I picked on the spur of the moment with its non-existent text hierarchy and eye-sore lists behind and move on to greener pastures. I invite you to meet your new friends, flickr and twitter, and this pretty website I built a while ago but never visit. How about joining us for some real fun over there? Sounds great? So glad to hear that. It will still take a bit of tweaking and cleaning up for your big move, so please bear with me while we prepare the grounds. So glad we talked. Keep up the good work … and thanks!
If you discover something you love, then do it again.
- Use a template you love. Then do it again.
- Find a layout design that you love. Then do it again.
- Learn a digital technique that you love. Then do it again.
- Find a color combination you love. Then do it again.
- Find a style that you love. Then do it again.
- Find a source of inspiration you love. Then do it again.
- Find a method of journaling that you love. Then do it again.
Some steps to Scrapbooking Simplified by Anna Aspnes. Such a simple yet strong thought - if you love it, then do it again.
I actually intended to only post the link with a short note to send you over to read it, but soon enough my ramblings turned into a kind of position check, looking at where Nils and I are, right now, with setting up our own business as an official team.The list had me nodding all the way and I must say it was a good feeling to see that most of these things have at least crossed my mind at some point.
We are just starting and definitely small, I really like and respect the person I’m going into business with and we make sure we always get green light before starting work on any project (although this mostly consists of an email confirming our offer instead of a signed contract).
Estimating is getting easier, although a make-do InDesign template is not the easiest set-up for actually getting the estimate down on paper. I tried Billings, but dropped out sometime last year. As only a multiple user setup would really make sense now, I most likely won’t go back to using it as its functionality has so far not convinced me to spend 140 EUR per user on Billings Pro. What’s your workflow for setting up estimates and bills?
Our estimates are getting more detailed each time we set one up, but I do need the reminder to consistently write down exactly how many concepts and rounds of revisions are included. This used to feel somewhat limiting to me in terms of how to approach the specific challenge, but I come to see that this limitation - or rather, this set framework - is a huge help. Even just writing this down makes me feel silly about it.
I’d say we’re going strong on client communication, but it has been a steep learning curve and still is. Especially communicating on the phone has been a challenge for me - I don’t really like talking on the phone and I’m not the best at conducting a result-orientated conversation. But with more and more practice, I have come to see that I am indeed getting better at it - and totally prefer the straight-forwardness of talking directly over writing or receiving an email in specific situations. Way to go.
Saving money from each check seems like a good plan, although our taxes are covered by pre-payments (but you never now if they are enough) and sales taxes will be handed over at the end of the month anyway. The latter is totally new to us, and we are still looking for a simple program to help us keep up to date - maybe Umsatz can fit the bill? (Pun intended.) Right now, we can’t afford a bookkeeper yet, but I can definitely see one in our future. Nils and I chatted about this the other day and even though I like to know what’s happening finance-wise, it seems like a simple enough idea to get some good people to work with us.
Skipping to the end of the list, I see the point that I feel we truly need to improve: promoting ourselves. I mean, right now we are quite deep into web design projects, but we haven’t even got a proper website of our own yet! See what I mean: http://hananils.de Hello? I know this “happens” to a lot of people, but I won’t take that as an excuse. There is none. Who will speak up for us if even we don’t? I am humbled that our past clients are indeed referring us to other people they trust, but we still have to stand up for ourselves, too.
Promoting others made me think of this blog, how it came to life, and which turns it will take in the future. Change lies ahead - but the explanation will have to wait for another blog post, as right now, all I have left to say is thank you, Eight Hour Day, for sharing your insights and inspiring this rather lenghty status report. Oh, and in case you haven’t been following along on their adventure yet: Katie, Nathan and their dog Eli are currently on the road for a year-long inspirational journey across the United States, regularly updating their blog with impressions of their trip, inspiring places, studios and people they have visited along with everyday discoveries they come across traveling the web. I highly enjoy their stories - so maybe you will, too!
Quotes and thoughts spinning in my mind.
Reconginzing them in others’.
Echoes across the world,
a net of thoughts and views. Feeling good.
What comes around, goes around, eh?
On another note … Yesterday I crossed off all items on my to-do list for the day. Awesome. Here’s to keeping up the spirit!
to clear the desk and make room for new things. Like the tax report papers.
to turn the studio into a place I want to spend my time in.
to pull out my one scrapbook album and get bits of my life in there.
to write about our first business trip together to Mainz, and all the goodness it filled me with.
to put together a list of supplies I want to order to have on hand. Stamp pads, page protectors, envelopes. Refills for my Copic Multiliners, or maybe some sturdier pens.
to draw that missing circle for our logo stamp. Now!