OUT OF OFFICE: WHAT WE GET UP TO IN OUR SPARE TIME.Reading Time
SALLY, Managing Director
Like a lot of creatives, my brain is always firing with ideas of how to get crafting. Whether it’s a personal project or a potential business idea, the to-do-one-day list is super long.
I guess my craft projects come in two major categories: digital and hands-on. I’m handy with a tool kit and have recently taken up upcycling furniture. Anyone who has ever been to the studio will know I love rescuing old items. Being able to bring new life to forgotten pieces in fun and interesting ways is a challenge I relish.
Why buy a fancy dress costume when you can make one yourself? I’ve made outfits for myself and others, for Halloweens, birthday parties and conventions. I enjoyed sourcing appropriate fabric for my Belle costume and rhinestoning an eagle onto my Elvis cape, but getting through the underground in a six foot Minions costume was a little challenging.
I love a gadget. At home I now have a 3D printer and a Cricut machine, and am grateful for any good excuse to use them.
My niece lives in Texas and her kindergarten offer lots of prop making opportunities. I live vicariously through her, helping make party decorations and accessories, the latest being her graduation cap.
MIKEE, Creative Lead
Away from the big screen I’m trying to master a further 88 very special buttons of the piano. Whilst working I listen to Classical Contemporary music and jazz standards.
My most recent passion is Golf. I am currently in the process of trying to gain an official world handicap. I recently read ‘Goldfinger’ and have a target in mind to hold a handicap that is better than James Bond. James Bond’s handicap is 9.
To coincide with trying to master golf, I can be found forcefully practicing mindfulness by patiently marking many golf balls with my own mark. This mindfulness comes in handy since I have probably lost well over 200 of them to date.
I have my own signature sandwich. The ‘Cumberland sausage, brie, caramelised onion, rocket in a toasted ciabatta’. I’ve yet to come up with a much shorter name for it. Suggestions welcome.
Lockdown brought out the inner child in me where I rediscovered the love of drawing with pens and paints again. This skill could very well come in handy with clients wishing to stray away from digital illustrations.
CONNOR, Technical Lead
On my lunch breaks I started messing around with 3D modelling, which resulted in almost a month of 3D renders. I started out with donuts, sunglasses, keyboards and coffee cups, with a bit of Rick and Morty thrown in.
I was challenged to make a fidget cube, which you can see below. It was a rather fun challenge – I definitely had to use some of everything I’d learnt and even some new stuff, like the wave ridges on the side spinners.
Soon I was onto more complex renders, like a globe and a gym (time spend: 6 hours 30 minutes). Before long I decded to use my lunchtimes on something else.
I’ve also dabbled in making videos and streaming games – I try toto try and make people laugh. For Christmas a couple years ago I wrote a childrens short story and made it and audio reading. I then uploaded it to Spotify.
LYDIA, Content Lead & Special Projects
Design is my full-time trade but I’ve also had my own side-hustle for the past five years. Viva Soul London is primarily a vintage clothing business which started, like so many other traders, from an overflowing wardrobe of items that I couldn’t even fit into. From a few rails in my living room I now have a website with 800 items for sale.
Viva Soul London is mainly a one-woman-show, with huge amounts of help from family and friends. I aim to have a bit of something for everyone, no matter your gender, age, size, style or era preference. Most of my stock tends to be from the 1960s and 1970s (I have a soft spot for great prints) but my oldest piece is Victorian.
Keeping in the vintage theme, I also sell my own illustrations of 20th century icons as prints, notebooks, greetings cards and enamel badges, and create art from found vintage pieces such as grocery price labels and cigarette cards.
Over the years I’ve traded at all kinds of events, from exhibition centres to church halls, and was itching to combine the town hall feel with a central London location. I launched Soul Love Vintage Fair in 2019 and we managed one “real” fair before the pandemic hit. Although a successful virtual fair since then, hopefully we’ll get back to a physical fair sometime next year.
When not dragged into the studio by my parents to act as CHO (Chief Happiness Officer), I’m usually at home, keeping myself busy in the garden. Luckily for a London pup, I have a nice big garden with lots of grass for me to scamper through.
And what is grass best for? Digging, of course. When I’m given a treat, I often head straight out to the garden to find it a safe place in the ground. This involves hiding it well but also returning to dig it up later in the day.
My paddle paws also come in handy when helping Sally with the vegetable patches. She grows broccoli, parsnips, carrots, green beans and tomatoes – I just have to try my best to remember to leave them where they are until they’re ready to be picked…
Aside from manual work, garden security is a 24-hour job. I have to make sure to keep watch for intruders, mainly pesky foxes which I can see from both the back door and the upstairs window at night. My neighbours and I get on very well and daily I pop my head over the fence to check in on how they’re doing. It’s always nice to be neighbourly, and occasionally I’m rewarded with a meat bone thrown my way, or an invitation for a proper playdate.