Taking The Plunge

Guess who’s finished university!? Four very long, very hard years of studying for my computer science degree, and it’s all over. I actually finished last month, but things have been crazy and I haven’t had time to catch you up yet. I graduate mid-July (which I’m incredibly nervous about, let me tell you now) and then I’ll officially be a graduate. For the first time in 18 years, I won’t be a student.

That seems weird to me. I’ve been studying practically my entire life, since starting school at five years old, and then it just goes away. I’m already feeling an ache to take on extra courses, but I’m way too busy at the moment. I’ll get there. I just bloody love learning new things.

Anyway, you’re probably wondering what I’ll be doing with my new, fancy, shiny computer science degree that I worked incredibly hard for? The answer is a big fat nothing, actually. In the final two years of university, I had a horrible time – my health and my mental health were in tatters and I had to take nearly 5 months off. During this time, I realised I’d lost all love and passion for the subject and the industry. I didn’t want to spend the rest of my long life sitting in an office with potentially nasty, sexist and unwelcoming colleagues (after all, that’s all I’ve ever experienced). It didn’t matter that I knew there was a very high possibility that a lot of possible work places would be a lot better than my experiences. It didn’t matter that I’d forgive and forget. I didn’t like it anymore.

If you’ve stuck around for a while on this blog of mine, you probably know of my love of photography, that story I always tell you about having to decide between photography or computer science and that choice of happiness or money. I used to go on about all of that quite often ’cause it was always on my mind.

Well, it finally happened. I took the plunge. Instead of frantically applying for jobs in the final months of university, that would ultimately make me unhappy for the foreseeable future, I began frantically working on something else. Late last year, I set up my portrait photography business, The Rose Quartz Photography, with only the unreachable dream of becoming a full-time photographer. I presumed I’d use my weekends alone to photograph all of the happy families, sleepy newborns and cheeky toddlers, whilst working a computing-based full-time job during the week. Nah, sod it.

Me and Matt discussed this a lot in my final months of university. He has been my rock during these two crappy years and I can’t even explain how incredible he’s been with me, especially when I was at my worst. He saw first-hand how unhappy the computing industry was making me and how drastically it was changing me. I was losing my hair, for god’s sake. When we decided that it would be better for my health (and probably our relationship too) to focus on happiness instead of money, he’s been nothing but supportive.

The Rose Quartz Photography is my new, full-time future. It’s my baby and I put all of my time and thoughts into it. Although I started this venture late last year, it’s only the last month that I’ve been working on it full time. When I’m not photographing wonderful people, I’ll be editing their beautiful photographs. Or I’ll be marketing my business on social media. Or I’ll be advertising my sessions all over Hull. Or I’ll be collaborating with other small businesses. Portrait photography, in all forms, is incredible. I’m constantly learning new things. I’m expressing my creativity. I’m meeting new people – regular clients who come to me with their bumps then their babies, models who love the effort I put into our creative, fashion or makeup shoots, families who leave me glowing reviews. It’s a happy place. It’s exciting.

Blog Stock Photo Flat Lay

So, if you’re up in Hull, East Yorkshire some time soon, and you’re looking for a photographer, drop me a message! I’m always happy to help (emphasis on the happy there, cause I really bloody am).

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What have you been up to recently?

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You can read my previous post here.

 

Hi, Friends, I’m Back

As I sit here, watching Jeremy Kyle on catch-up TV, with a mushroom and ale pie cooking in the oven and a cup of tea in my hand, I couldn’t shake the guilty pit that was building up in my stomach. My beloved blog, where have I been? All of my lovely readers, I’ve treat you so badly. Don’t for a second think that this came easily. Every single day I think “Is today the day? Do I have time?” and since Valentine’s Day, the answer has always been no.

Blog Stock Photos Camera and Flowers

I have reasons though, so let me explain.

I’m in the final two months of university. As you can imagine, all of my deadlines and exams have come crashing down. That’s not my issue though – I work so well under pressure and I’m great at what I do. The work isn’t the problem. What I’m struggling with is the lack of passion I have left for the whole degree and any prospect of going into this field of work after graduation makes me feel sick. I hate it. Believe me, it’s incredibly difficult to put your heart into working hard on something when you hate it so much.

Silver lining? I realised what I actually want to do for a living. I’ve always known, but I didn’t believe it would be possible. I want to be a photographer. Always have, always will, and I finally think it’s in my reach. I remember debating whether or not I should study photography at university, but I was met with laughter. Being easily influenced by other’s opinions of me, I gave that dream up. However, last year, I set up my own portrait studio at home and I’ve been steadily and happily growing my clientele ever since. I love every second I spend with a camera in my hand. The problem is that I have a hard decision to make – follow my dreams and make very little money after graduation, placing a lot more pressure on Matthew to get a job that supports us both, or follow my degree’s career path, be incredibly unhappy and make a lot of money. Happiness or money?

During my year in industry at university, I spent my time as a software developer for a company that builds software for the fire service. The work was fine but the environment was soul destroying. I broke. My whole mental health was shaken and I’ve never been the same since. It’s been over a year now and I still fight daily. Honestly, I don’t think I could do that again. This is horrible to admit, and I’m sorry, but I wanted to die. I’ve never felt such pain. I’ve been getting better and I don’t want to go back to that dark place.

If I didn’t experience that, without a doubt, I’d be happy running and dancing and bounding straight into a graduate developer role after university. However, I now know better. On the other hand, if I didn’t have a fiance, a home, two precious fur babies, a wedding on the horizon and if I had a bed to return to at my parent’s home like a lot of single students, following my dream would be a piece of cake.

Yeah, there’s a lot going on in my head right now. I won’t know which path I’ll follow for a few months yet, so I can’t imagine I’m suddenly going to be back like nothing happened, but I’ll try. With me in the process of creating social media channels and a blog for my photography, my entire social media presence is soon to increase. Maybe that will influence me to write more often, too. I hope so!

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I’m massively sorry that my reintroduction to this sweet little blog was such an unhappy one, but sometimes the truth needs to be told. Getting something off your chest is always a sure way to make yourself feel a little bit better, and I sure as hell don’t feel that guilty pit in my stomach anymore! Honestly, one blog post later, I do feel a lot more excited to be back (again).

How have you been?

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Doubts About The Future

I thought I had my career figured out.

Although a Computer Science degree does leave my options pretty wide open in a field that I absolutely love, I was sure that writing code for a living was my future and my passion. I’m sure it still is, somewhere deep down, because when you put me in front of a computer and let me code for fun I’m in my element. There’s a difference, though, between that and between doing it because you have to pay your bills. For me, being forced to do something (whether that’s for a job, coursework, or because you’re faking interest) sucks the passion out of it. This has happened to me before, as I’m sure it has to most people, and I’m sure I’ll get over it, but there has always been other things that I love more… I was too anxious and too practical to believe I’d be able to make a living from them.

It’s always something creative, too. My life-long passion for creativity and my need to do everything to the best of my ability work incredibly well together. It’s like I was born to be creative, in one way or another. I could go on for hours about all the different ideas I’ve had to allow me to be creative for a living, but they never happened so I won’t bore you.

The best example of this would be my photography. I feel naked without my cameras. If I knew I’d succeed, making enough to money to live as happily as we do right now, I would drop everything for my chance. It’s a dream, and it’s one I’m not sure I’ll ever have the guts to follow. I’ve always been obsessed with taking photographs, documenting my memories, meticulously organising and storing them away for almost a decade, but it’s not just about memories now and photography is simply part of me.

Related: How I Organise My Digital Photos

But hey, you gotta pay the bills.

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-Morgan

Classic Novels I Haven’t Read (Yet)

Evening lovelies!

So, if you haven’t already guessed, I love reading. I love old books, new books, long, short. It doesn’t matter, I’m a huge bookworm. Since moving into our own place, me and Matt have had the freedom (and space!) to fill our home with as much of ‘us’ as we like, and that means a huge collection of books.

I do love reading the classics. Most of my ‘all time favourite books’ are classic novels! Recently though, I’ve been going through a huge YA phase. I think that’s because I’ve recently found the bookish community on social media (WordPress, Instagram) and a lot of the accounts I follow do tend to revolve around YA books. I feel like the phase, for me, is coming to a close, and the giant, beautiful hard back collection of classic novels on my bookshelf have been staring at me for way too long!


Classic Novels I Can’t Wait To Read!

War of the Worlds, The Time Machine, The Invisible Man by H.G. Wells
Original War of the Worlds album artwork

I’m a huge science fiction fan. These have been on my reading list for years and years now, and now whenever I think about any of the I get butterflies because I’m so excited to read them!

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Jane Austen Pride and Prejudice

Can I call myself a bookworm if I haven’t ever read a Jane Austen book? I also can’t allow myself to watch any film adaptations until I’ve read the book, so there’s that too. This is one of the ‘ultimate classics’ that is on the tip of everybody’s tongue and I can’t believe I haven’t read it.

Dracula by Bram Stoker
Bram Stoker Dracula

I love Gothic Horror, I love horror, I love vampires, I love history. I have a feeling I’ll really like this book.

Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
Murder on the Orient Express

I’ve never read an Agatha Christie mystery, but I have always wanted to. Since Doctor Who did an episode based around her, I’ve been even more eager. I’d say this novel was one of the more famous ones, so I guess I’ll start there!

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
THE GREAT GATSBY

I haven’t read the book, I haven’t seen the film. I think the idea of the 1920’s is beautiful, and I can only imagine how descriptive of the time the novel is! I’ve heard quite a lot of it, and I vaguely remember being told a huge spoiler but I’m sure I’ll enjoy it just the same!