It’s a cool and rainy London morning. I’m glad I have a nice cup of coffee next to me and no particular place to go – for the next couple hours, at least.
I’m not shy to admit that there are certain things in life that I do very well and conversely, other things that I do not. I am very good at making shoes. I’m not very good at talking about myself. The latter makes this couple of weeks in the UK a bit of a challenge, but I’m doing my best in that regard.
It’s been a few years since I last spent serious time in London. I really love this city…in spite of the weather. There is an amazing historical / cultural vibe here. It’s hard to not feel inspired when you wander down streets surrounded with so much history and beauty.
We have made shoes for a number of shows here in London over the years. Due to the constantly shifting sands of the theatrical landscape, we’ve been doing less work in Europe in general lately and more work elsewhere, such as Asia. I’ve been missing doing the work on this side of the Atlantic (or rather, I’ve been missing having the opportunity to spend time on this side of the Atlantic…) which is what spawned this trip.
I figured timing was right to come over here for a bit and re-acquaint myself with friends and colleagues, as well as trying to introduce my work to other people who I have not previously had the pleasure of working with. So far, it has worked out really well. I’ve met some pretty great new people, reconnected with old friends and am generally feeling pretty inspired about what I do. And the visit is far from over.
I’ll admit, I didn’t sleep much the first couple of nights. And truly, it was less to do with the jetlag and more to do with my own trepidations of self-promotion. Fortunately, it’s gone very smoothly.
I think it helped that, before my first big meeting, I stopped by on some friends who work in the same area. We had lunch, a good chat, and it stopped me from thinking about the requirement of promoting my work. Suddenly, I was in said first meeting and things were going really smoothly. It helped as well that this first designer was incredibly laid-back and lovely. That’s one thing I’m very thankful for in the theatre / film realm in which I work – people are, in general, very down to earth and easy to talk to. It’s really easy being yourself around people who are doing the same.
Things continue to get easier with each meeting and I’m getting a little more comfortable working in this role (though I seem to be quickly losing my callouses….always proof that I’ve been out of my element for a bit). And a bit of comfort is exactly what I need, as I have a few more big days ahead of me. And a list of meetings that seems to be growing daily.
Now if we could just do something about this rain….