Monday, October 5, 2009
Welcome back to the monthly recap of my life as an artist.
Looking back over the last 30 days always is a rewarding moment to see that I make time for art, despite my tendency to focus on what wasn't accomplished in September. Overall I thrilled with another wonderful month!
Life has been hectic getting ready to move. In a week we're moving across town to an apartment. There is no lawn to water!!! And just enough space for the things we use, so there wont be much clutter. :-)
Before diving off into the art, I wanted to share how my job hunt has been going and what I've been learning.
Job Hunting Tactics
Track your progress
I have changed up my approach to finding a job, thanks to my love of analyzing. With an Excel spreadsheet I track where I've applied to and when I followed up with them. I realized that I wasn't following up very much. That was because of being discouraged with the employers who posted on their ads not to call or email. After discovering my tendency of confrontation, I sent off emails to the employers who didn't specify to not contact them and that resulted in getting two interviews!
Don't put eggs in one basket, instead send out lots of applications
Another thing I noticed on the Excel spreadsheet is the volume of applications I have sent off. Since May I've applied to/researched a little over a 100 positions. No wonder I am tired of hunting out positions that would be a good match, then writing a custom cover letter and resume for each job. In the past five months I've had five interviews, three of which were last week. If you're job hunting don't lose hope. Get past job hunting asap by making the hunt a full time job. There is a job out there for you.
Another tactic I developed over September was broaden my hunt from Sacramento to the West Coast. Funds are low, so relocating would not be possible, but living at work would be doable. I remembered working at a conference center in Colorado and loved it. So I applied to science camps in Oregon, Colorado and California. To show the potential employers that I really wanted to work with kids, I became certified in CPR and first aid.
The CPR and first aid class was so much fun! I reminded me of how much I adore being a student and learning new skills. In college my favorite classes were the anatomy classes. The most interesting and exciting field trip was going to dental school to study the cadavers!!! Broadening my scope of where else to use my new certification, my cousin K gave me the idea to search Craigs List jobs by typing in "CPR." From that search daycare workers, care takers, tutors and gymnastics instructors popped up, so off I sent my cover letter and resume.
Over and over again I hear that networking is the key to getting a job. If you don't know anyone where you want to work, volunteering can be a great way to get an in. Using that tactic, I am now a volunteer at the public library. At the orientation I learned that my local branch is going to be renovated so the library will be more automated and require less librarians. It was hard to be excited to hear that. People add so much more to an experience. I love librarians. If I didn't want an experience I'd lock myself in a room and use the Internet to get everything I needed mailed to me. AHHH. With the letting go of some of the current librarians I doubt they will be hiring an admin or bookshelver like me. Oh well, I am happy to help out and I love being around the books. Chalk that up for another skilled learned: filling using the Dewy decimal system. (I've always wanted that to be on my resume.)
Looking for clerical jobs I've been shocked to find they pay so little, despite the amount of responsibility and multi tasking that is required. I think it would be an absolute blast to work as a 911 dispatcher. Then I'd get to be involved in the health care field, use my CPR skills, do something important like help save lives and provide comfort to the callers. My slow typing doesn't make me qualified to be a dispatcher yet, but thanks to the public library I now have a typing program on my computer. I am improving faster then I thought, but it is still going to take many months to get to my goal of 60 WPM. 40 WPM is the minimum for that position, but when/if I apply, I don't want to be average, I want to be cream of the crop.
Back to the Art. Here we go!
I'm going to keep this short, since there are captions under the photos for this months goings on. The link for the photos is at the end of the post.
Etsy store is no more
First up, I decided to stop showing my art in my etsy store. (That's an online mall of all things handmade.) Nothing was moving and it costs money to keep reposting the images, so for now the store is empty. I have plans for future ideas but for now it is one less thing to manage and one less expense.
Looking else where for freelance writing
I wrote my last article for Capitalist Chicks. The site is going to be shutting down in a few months, due to a lack of income.
Eleven Guidelines to Getting Art Grants on capitalistchicks.com and also reposted on my blog.
Sacramento Children's Museum
For the experience, enjoyment and for networking I am volunteering at the Sacramento Children's Museum. There is going to be a new location opening up in Rancho Cordova in either the spring or summer of 2010. I am helping out with planning the permanent art installation of children's art. I hadn't realized all the the projects I did as an intern at UC Berkeley had prepared me so well for this kind of work. Thank you Robby! Plus my experience with art installations and love for planning have also been an added benefit.
Still Researching Stop Motion Animation Careers
This field is still a huge mystery as how to get a sculptor position at a stop motion production house, but I'm determined to figure that out. Thanks to stopmotionanimation.com's message boards and youtube searches for "San Francisco + stop motion" I've made some connections. I've also subscribed for stop motion magazine and cant wait for the first issue.
I also have a spread sheet of stop motion companies world wide, with a column for when I sent off my application. I figure it will take several years of experience before these production companies will be interested in me, so until then I am going to send them my demo reel and resume to familiarize them with my name. I am also looking for local shoots to volunteer on, to give me experience and make some new friends.
Photos for September are right here!
Thanks for reading and I'll see you next month.
Table of Contents for HITS (Happenings in the Studio)