Monday, 11 August 2014

Progress Report!

I've had this blog for a few months now, and it seems a reasonable time to take stock and look at my progress.

There are my goals that are In Progress...

001. Fill a sketchbook with artwork/studies of only one subject
I picked a subject! Obviously I'm a glutton for punishment as I decided upon hands as my subject.

I'm using a small hardback sketchbook that I bought from Tiger. My plan is to learn to draw hands first. There are a dozen or so tutorials in my bookmarks right now. Once I'm more comfortable with it, I'll start to be more adventurous and use medium other than pencil, like pastels or paint! Hopefully by the time I fill this sketchbook, I'll be much better at drawing hands!

010. Visit 30 museums/art galleries/exhibitions (06/30)
So far, so good! I've seen some modern art, traditional art, been to museums I love and also museums I'd never thought to visit before! There are still plenty of options, particularly as there are galleries with constantly changing exhibitions.

014. Start a collection of found objects
So far my collection comprises of a Parisian transport ticket (found on the pavement during a walk) and a cork from a bottle of sparkling wine (found on a train seat on Saturday).

031. Hold breath for 1 minute
I have done this, but haven't got proof yet, so here it stays. 

"AfricaCIA-HiRes". Licensed under Public domain via Wikimedia Commons.
033. Memorise every country in Africa
Thanks to BBC's Pointless, I've learned of the existence of such countries as Central African Republic, Sao Tome and Principe, Lesotho, and Guinea-Bissau. School and the news has taught me of South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya, Sudan, South Sudan, Morocco, Egypt, Libya, Libera, Somalia, Cote D'Ivoire and Ghana! I probably missed a few from the list that I should know, but I'm getting there!

034. Learn to say Hello (or Good day) in 30 languages (06/30)
Six so far! Admittedly I knew some already. Some of these languages use various forms of 'hello/hallo' for hello, so I've opted for 'good day'!
  • German: Guten tag
  • French: Bonjour
  • Spanish: Buenas dias
  • Japanese: こんにちは (konnichiwa)
  • Norwegian: God dag
  • Hungarian: Jó napot
Next up, I'll try to learn it in Italian. I'm sure I've learnt it before, but it's gone from my memory! Then, perhaps Chinese, Russian and Turkish...I'm registered for some free courses in those languages on Udemy, so surely they will cover a simple hello/good day!

035. Complete ‘Japanese for Busy People’ vol 1
This has ground to a halt and the books are back in the cupboard. I got as far as Chapter 20, which is as far as I got last time, too! This is the point where I start to have trouble remembering things... Argh, how can I make the knowledge stick!?

036. Eat/drink in 30 new places (cafes, restaurants, food stands…) (06/30)
So far I've eaten cake in Worthing, sausage sandwiches in Lincoln and pearl milk tea in Brighton!
Have also decided that drinking a soft drink in a pub Does Not Count.

039. Explore 30 towns/cities/villages (02/30)
Lincoln and Worthing so far! 

043. Try foods of 5 different countries (01/05)
At this point in time, this extends as far as ROM, a rum-flavoured chocolate bar that I bought in a Polish shop. I didn't add this to my goal of eating 50 chocolates as I hadn't even conceived of the chocolate goal when I ate this!
Sadly the Polish shop has closed down, so no longer can I get my hands on the delicious and amazingly boozy little chocolate bars!

044. Try 10 foods/drinks I’ve never tried before (02/10)
Indian street food at a village fair, and a little 'Euro Cake' that apparently came from Thailand (this should probably go in #43, but never mind). I didn't count the Indian street food for goal #43 because I've been eating Indian cuisine for most of my life!

045. Complete the 100 Push Ups training program
I may have to put this one on the back-burner for a while, as I have shoulder trouble.
As it stands, I have to do wall push ups, because my muscles are too weak to do proper pushups, or even knee push ups or bench push ups. (Why did I choose this goal?)
Here, let me illustrate an example of me, trying to do a push up...

I have some way to go, don't I?
Seems I've hit a wall at Week 4--I've gone back to Week 3 and am hoping for the best!

048. Visit 5 different counties (01/05)
Lincolnshire so far! I decided that, wherever possible, I'd like for these to be counties I've not visited before. Unfortunately that cuts out the majority of counties that can be reached affordably and for a day-trip, so this might be a goal that will be stretched out over a longer period of time.

050. Read 3 books per month for 1 year (1/12)
Though I haven't posted about my reading habits, I began this last month, by reading:
  • I Never Knew That About England by Christopher Winn
  • Sod Abroad by Michael Moran
  • How to be a Woman by Caitlin Moran
At present I'm reading Strong Imagination by Daniel Nettle. 

055. Create 52 paintings in 1 year (31/52)
You guys are probably sick of the sight of paintings around here! 

059. Go to 5 music events (02/05)
Two down, three to go! I have a ticket for a concert in London next month too.

061. Watch 100 films (13/100)
This ground to a halt when the weather turned better. I'll probably pick up where I left off once the weather starts to become colder again. 

064. Eat 50 different chocolates (13/50)
I'm still eating chocolate! Another post should be coming up soon.

080. Refashion/upcycle 3 items of clothing (01/03)
At this point, I've only refashioned one dress I did adjust a skirt recently, but it was so little change (six inches off the length and a few inches off the waistband) that I decided it didn't count!

As for Completed goals...

002. Sell things I’ve made at a craft fair
I didn't sell much, but it was an experience.

024. Enter a writing competition
I surfed upon a 'Write a Zombie-related short story' competition on SFX's website, so I entered. I didn't win, so maybe I'll share my story here at some point!

025. Write 1 haiku per day for 1 month
You can read half of them here, and half of them here

037. Go to an event that isn’t an anime convention
I went to the Ideal Home Show. It was interesting, and very busy!

041. Ride the Volks Railway in Brighton
Finally! Can't believe it took me so long to do it. 

046. Write 10 original stories of 1000+ words (NaNoWriMo does not count) (10/10)
Complete, but I'm still posting them here, under the collective title, Folk Tales of the Sea People.

049. Enter 10 competitions/prize draws every day for 1 month (30/30)
I did this in May. Didn't win anything, unfortunately, but here is my Competitions Diary.

058. Send 10 postcards with artwork drawn by myself (11/10)
Ended up sending out extra! I'm not sure if they all reached their destinations! D= One friend only recently got hers--the dog had pinched it!

060. Grow a plant from seeds and give cuttings to people.
I grew goji berry plants, and ended up donating a whole load of the seedlings to charity. Of the five I kept, one has died, one looks almost dead, and the other three have grown rapidly! Next year, I'll be able to plant them outside.
Also grew some parsley and handed some of it on to a neighbour.

071. Have a picnic
Had a little picnic on the way back from a walk about a month ago. Wouldn't mind having another sometime!

That's all my progress for now.  Hopefully next time I write up one of these, I'll have completed a lot more!

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