Hello. It's me. I'm back. At least for the next few days - I'll explain why later.
But first I've got some catching up to do. Especially with Alan's Alphabet. Because I can see that I started it on 1 June last year and that the last posting I made was on 8 June. That's not very good, is it? I suppose it just goes to show that I was never a designer who was cast in the Fletcher mould. But that's not good enough, is it? It is, after all, meant to be a tribute. So I promise to try harder in 2011.
And now for a catch up. That was an interesting week of posting from Alix, wasn't it? And far more serious than I was expecting when I first asked her about doing this. But well done, Alix: there are some real issues that you've raised that it would be well worth everyone reading to consider carefully. Specifically the value of design, and the value that's placed upon our services as designers. And when the estate agent asking me about my job back last summer remarked "So you come in and make things look sexy?", I realise that the value is exactly the same as it was when I first was able to call myself a designer (only one generation on from being a 'commercial artist'). A depressing thought.
Alix, I hope your generation will change that. And I have picked up that you are not the only young designer asking such difficult questions. But if I can give you some advice, change will only come about if designers organise themselves. It's the public perception of the job that we do that needs addressing - and that can only be done if we work together towards a common aim. And the design bodies that we currently have (or those that run them) are not helping us to achieve that goal.
And now back to me. I don't plan this blog in advance. I try my best to post every working day - and that's a discipline that I impose upon myself. But only very rarely do I have an idea of what I'm going to post about more that a couple of days ahead. Although it's not completely unstructured, of course. Because I've got themes and catagories that guide me. But I'm going to let you into a little secret now: 2010 was not a good year for me. Not a disastrous year. I've had worse. But overall, not a good year. And a year that ended badly.
So that's why I decided to start the new year off with a guest blogger. Somewhow I thought that might inject another vibe - and stimulate thoughts and themes that I could pick up and develop over the coming year. But I wasn't expecting the reaction that Alix acheived with her first real post. And that gave me the idea that I might extend the guest posting format for the whole of January, and have different guest posters to cover a week each. Except that everyone I've asked was far too busy this week. So you're stuck with me instead. I'll do my best though.
But I may not be here next week. I'll keep you posted.