New job!

Screen Shot 2015-04-19 at 22.16.23I’ve worked in U magazine for almost four years now. It’s an incredible publication, written by amazing people and designed by some seriously talented art directors. I love it SO much, and I will continue to, even though today, Thursday, April 23, was my last day working there. Sadface.

I was beauty editor, I wrote the health page, the sex page (sorry, family members) and lots more besides. I love the readers who wrote to the U Twitter account, the Facebook messages, the excitement every time a new issue hit my desk. I couldn’t possibly have loved my job any more, actually. I feel very, very lucky to have had it at all. It taught me so much, and I have met some people I’ll never forget, some friends for life – both at U and at the other Harmonia titles. I will miss the mag and the gang SO much. And I’m sure there will be MANY tears at my leaving drinks tonight (and it won’t even be because of the alcohol!)

Screen Shot 2015-04-19 at 22.16.50But ya know how it is… The career ladder must be climbed, and I’m about to take a giant step into Xposé magazine on Monday next, when I’ll officially have my first day there as Deputy Editor. Happy face!!

I’ll still be working on the beauty pages which makes my heart happy (it’s my bread and butter, like) but I’ll also have a hand in other sections too. I’m so excited to start, but nervous too. You know that very Irish (and too often, female) thing where you think any minute your employer is going to realise you’re an imposter and they’ve made a huge mistake hiring you?? That. But mostly excitement.

So anyway, that’s my news. Like in first class in school when you write your ‘news’ at the start of every day. Mine, next Monday, will read:

“My News:

Today is a sunny day. It is Monday. I started a new job. I write for Xposé magazine now. It is good. I am having beans on toast for dinner. Tomorrow I am going on a nature walk.”

All. With. A. Full. Stop. After. Each. Word. Because. That’s. How. Kids. Read. Right?

And thanks to the design GENIUS that is Ms Aine Duffy and the cover line assistance from my gorgeous colleagues in Harmonia… Ta-dah!! Here’s my very own cover…

Wish me luck!signature

 

Three for Tuesday: Beauty Buys

So lads, I am in a very fortunate position in that my job is (literally) trying out the latest and greatest in the vast expanse that is the beauty world. 

It means three things:

(a) I try everything so I know what’s what

(b) I rarely buy make-up

(c) If I DO buy something it means it’s DAMN GOOD

With that in mind, I’m only ever going to post on this here website the beauty/skincare/haircare gear that I have re-bought with my own cold hard cash. Just as a nod to the stuff that really has my blessing. And so that you’re not all like “OH SHE SAYS THAT COS SHE GOT IT FREE” or whatever, cos I can’t have yiz thinkin’ that now.

Right, now that that’s out of the way. Here are three things I have repurchased because they are INCREDIBLE.

dream lumi touch concealer1. Dream Lumi Touch Highlighting Concealer from Maybelline, €10.49

I’ve always been a bit wary of Yves Saint Laurent’s Touche Éclat as a concealer. It highlights like an absolute dreamboat, but as a concealer I felt it was a leeeeettle too transparent and a little too light reflective. This bad boy, however, does the highlighting bit without being too HEY LETS DISCO about it. Plus it’s waaaay cheaper, and you don’t feel bad going through it like water, which I do. Properly decent product there, Maybs. Lovin’ your work.

perversion mascara

2. Perversion Mascara from Urban Decay, €21

In the interest of full disclosure, I’ll admit it. I am a lash extension ADDICT. It’s true. But when I’m lash extension-less, the ONLY thing I’ll settle for wearing lately is this. You can pair it with the white base coat called Subversion if you want to – I do for nights out – but even without it this is without doubt my favourite launch of last year and…. yes. I’ll go there. My favourite mascara ever. Yves Saint Laurent (poor Yves is getting an awful time today god bless him) Effet Faux Cils is my former numero uno. And listen, that’s still an incredible product, just slightly pricey and dries up a tad on the speedy side. But Perversion has my heart AND my lashes all a-flutter for the moment.

chanel CC cream3. CC Cream with SPF50 from Chanel, €60.50

YES I KNOW THAT’S EXTORTIONATE MONEY. I really truthfully do. But my skin practically sings to me when I wear the new CC from Chanel, so yes. I paid for it. Now obviously this love-in with the CC from the double C (sounds like I’m about to take off into a rap) will have to end sometime soon cos I can’t afford it to continue, but if you’re looking for something with SPF50, the perfect amount of coverage for daytime, and skincare benefits you can ACTUALLY feel happening (maybe) then just buy it. Even if you only ever get it once, it’s worth it. Better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all, or something. And sure look, having Chanel in your handbag is practically the next best thing to having Chanel AS your handbag, right? Right?? Hashtag delusional b*tch.

What beauty bits are you raving about to anyone who’ll listen?? TELL ME SO I CAN SPEND MORE MONEY I DON’T HAVE.

signature

#SquadGoals: The Irish Stars of Instagram

If, like me, you spend hours drooling over the most gorgeous humans Instagram has to offer, you’re PROBABLY familiar with the six girls in these pictures… If not? Don’t worry. I got you.

IMG_6887

insta 2

These are girls I unashamedly creep on on Instagram on a daily basis, waiting to see which aesthetically fabulous part of their lives they’re gonna post about next. Whether it’s #WIWT posts, #selfie loveliness or some kind of #nofilter magic, they’ve got the Instagame NAILED. And I want them all to be my mates. Srsly.

So I chatted to all six of them, looking to find out what inspires them to post, what they love about Instagram, what music they listen to, how they’ll be voting in the #MarRef and let me tell you. This is one ridiculously cool group of Irish women.

Their interviews will be going up from Wednesday.

Y’all come back now, ya hear?

signature

WIN! Make-up goodies from Sleek Make-up

Wanna win some stuff? Okay.

Fressshhhh off the docks into Ireland (not literally, but ya know) Sleek Make-up is a deadly brand – slick black packaging, daycent quality and properly daycent pricing for how good the products are. I’ve been buying the stuff online for a good while now (Cloud10Beauty.com in case you’re wondering!) but they’ll be EVERYWHERE now.

And look, I’m only delirah with the Facebook love people are showing, so I’m giving away a gansy load of Sleek goodies on the blog’s FB page if you’re interested?? Click HERE to enter…

There’s a face palette with bronzer, highlighter and blush, there are two eyeshadow quads and one MASSUFFFF eye palette with neutrals to suit basically all eyes (unless your eyes are some mad colour like red or black) and there’s a brow kit too with the tiniest, cutest tweezers in existence… Your face wants you to enter, I’d say.

sleek make-up

Job’s A Good ‘Un: Cool Careers Part 3

So I featured Kodaline’s tour manager, a glamour model, the CEO of an art company, and the head pastry chef in Dublin’s best cake café. I’ve left the one I’m most jealous of ’til last. Anyone who knows me well knows that a life in musical theatre was my destiny, but I was accidentally left off the list when our creator (whoever she is) was handing out the spectacular singing voices. Sigh.

The very lovely Fiona Carty is a pal of mine from long ago, and she is living the dream in London, acting in The Commitments in the West End. Read on and find out how amazing her job is…

FIONA CARTY

fiona cartyIf you’d to describe your job in one sentence…
I am an actress in The Commitments,  a new musical in London’s West End.

If you’d to describe your job in one WORD…
Soulful :)

What exactly is your job title and ‘official’ role?
I usually go with “Ensemble/1st cover Alice/2nd Cover Imelda in The Commitments” when I write my job down anywhere like a CV. My official role is a member of the chorus in the show and I also cover a featured ensemble role and am 2nd and 3rd cover for the female  lead roles.

What do people *think* your job entails?
I think people think it’s much more glamorous than it is. Showing up to work in the evening for a few hours a night and having all day free…which it sort of is but it’s also very tough. When you’re not in a job or when you’re coming to the end of a contract you fill your days looking for a new one. Imagine going on 2 or 3 job interviews a month. It takes a thick skin and a lot of patience.

What does your job *really* entail?
In my current job I get to play a number of 1980s Dubliners! We have 8 shows a week, Tuesday to Sunday with two shows on Saturdays and Sundays. Every few weeks we will have cover rehearsals during the day to keep us fresh. I’m second cover and I’ve only played a lead role once so far in this show so it’s a lot of watching from the wings to make sure that I know what I’m doing should I ever go on a lead as I don’t get a lot of practice. The way the show is directed, every member of the cast is used (some shows have cast members who only go on stage when another person is sick or on holiday and they slot into their place) so once someone is off it can mean moving everyone around to cover the absences so it’s rare that we do the exact same things in two shows in a row. It keeps things fresh.

How did you get from school to where you are now?
I always did amateur dramatics as a child and during my teens. After school I applied to do Theatre Studies in Trinity College Dublin but didn’t get the points on my CAO. My second choice was very different and I ended up studying business in DCU which had a fantastic Drama Society. I spent more time there than in lectures and gained so much experience. When I graduated I knew I didn’t want to work in business so I decided to work for a while (in marketing) to save for drama school. In 2011 I started a masters in Musical Theatre at The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. I graduated in 2012 and moved to London and I’ve worked between there and Ireland ever since.

What are the job prospects like in your industry?
There are obviously so many different roles that actors want to play and theatres that we all would like to work in. Regardless of where you are in your career there is always somewhere else to go. I never expected to have a west end job so soon after graduating so I consider myself very lucky. I’ve played lead roles in the past in regional theatre so for me a lead in the West End would be what I would be aiming for some time in the future. Everyone has their own goals be in moving on to a different show or onto TV or film or to roles in regional theatres around the country.

What is the coolest thing about your job?
We get to meet quite a few celebrities when they come to see the show. In December Brian May came back stage to meet the cast. We were all completely starstruck. He was such a lovely guy.

What is your least favourite thing about your job?
Working evenings and all weekend can be a bit tough. Our only night off is Monday so it’s not the most social of nights.
A
Was what you’re doing now always something you wanted to do?
Yes but it wasn’t until I was around 21 that I actually thought it might be possible.
A
Finally, if you weren’t doing your current job, what other career would you love to have?
I would love to work with animals in some way. I’m not sure why I never looked into that during my Leaving Cert to be honest but I’ve already changed my career once so who knows what’s next.
Thanks for answering my questions Fiona! Excuse me while I daydream about starring as Princess Amneris in Aida…
signature

Sh*t Just Got Real: An Irish Teetotal Girl’s Night Out

I LOVE nights out. I love pre-drinking, I love dancing, I love pubs, I love having fun, being social, meeting new people, talking to strangers, making fast friends. I love losing my voice in a karaoke bar at 4am while some poor barman pries the microphone from my hands while I spit Celine Dion lyrics furiously into his face. I love having an “I love you soooo much, no really, I do!” heart-to-heart with my close friends.

When you read those things, you probably pictured most of them involving drunk people, right? Because yeah, all of the above are, in Ireland, associated with drinking. Sure, pubs are okay on occasion if you’re off the drink for Dry January. And yeah, being social can mean many different things, lots not involving alcohol at all.

I don’t drink.

I’m not alone in that, obviously. Plenty of people don’t. Although it’s still rare enough in Ireland that when I tell people that for the first time, they usually remark “oh really?” with an air of piqued interest. They’re sometimes confused (Americans cannot wrap their head around the fact – ‘But… you’re IRISH???) and they’re sometimes intrigued as to why (are you very religious? Are you a recovering alcoholic? Are you Amish?? I’ve heard it all!) but mostly, the response I get is “fair play to you! I couldn’t do it!” My friends and family are incredible, and all fully understand and accept my teetotal stance. But acquaintances and people I’ve just met presume I’m a craic vacuum, dry, shy, etc etc etc. Which is a bit closed-minded, really. And it used to annoy me, but I’ve come to accept it as a fact of life when the country you live in’s main pastime is drinking.

People sometimes marvel at my ability to have the same night out they have without drink being behind it, and to that I say this: there’s nothing special about that. It’s not an ability. Anyone can do it, it’s just that most people choose to let the drink take charge. Someone said to me once “imagine this nightclub if no one was drinking. It’d be shite!” And look, I’m not gonna argue with that. It probably would have been. But maybe a nightclub wouldn’t be the only place to have fun in Dublin on a Saturday night if that was the case? Would we diversify? Who knows!

As a teenager, not drinking was kinda okay. My friends accepted it. I was strong enough as a young person not to be too bothered with anyone who didn’t. Now that I’m in my late twenties, it’s bloody hard. I thought my teens would be the toughest part. I was wrong!

I’ll try to explain, if I can.

During a particularly long working week, when everyone was stressed out and tired, my colleagues were all talking about the bottle of wine or the gin and tonic they were going to enjoy on Friday evening. I wanted to be like ‘yeah, I’m DYING for a cold can of Coke, just to take the edge off’. But that, to a person who drinks alcohol, sounds a bit stupid. How could I enjoy a can of Coke the way they are going to enjoy their wine? How could a can of Coke relax me in the same way something with 12% alcohol in it would? Not possible. I felt left out in a way that I never had as a teen.

I feel left out of those types of conversations, frequently.

On nights out, I have a ball during pre-drinks. I have a ball driving all my friends to wherever we’re going. I dance, I sing, I laugh hard. I talk to strangers, I have the craic with barmen, I make shifty eyes at my friends when some weirdo tries to chat me up. Around 1am, usually, when the venue gets inevitably full to the brim, I start getting tired. Alcohol is great fuel, and if you’re only on the water, it’s tough to keep pace. I also get agitated by the elbows to the back, the toes getting crushed and the clothes getting stained by spilled Jager shots.

I notice creepy men more and instinctively go into friend-protection-mode. I am more conscious when a friend of mine is getting to a too-drunk stage, and again, on instinct, watch out for them. None of this is at their request of course, but it’s just what friends do. I never feel obliged to do it, but I always want my friends to be safe, enjoy themselves, and get home without incident or injury.

This makes me feel like the mammy. Again, completely on me. But it happens out of my control, and it gets frustrating. I know full-well my friends will make it home safely without me, but I have the fear that the ONE time I don’t see them to their door, something bad will happen. Irrational, yes. Unnecessary, yes. But my cross to bear for sure.

If I want to leave a night out early, it’s assumed it’s because I don’t drink. Not because I’m just having a crap time, oh no. It’s definitely (said with a tilt of the head and a knowing look) “she doesn’t drink…”. If someone who’s knocking back Prosecco decides they want to leave early, no one questions their logic. No one judges them for being shite craic. So when I decide I want to leave at midnight because I’m not feeling the buzz of the night, “if she just had a few drinks in her she’d be grand” is the thought running through many minds. Unfair, but that’s the way of it.

Then there’s the bonding. Silly, I know, but drunken chats brings people together. It mends friendships (it breaks them too but that’s another day’s posting…) it creates laughter, it encourages sharing and secrets and revelations. Two tipsy girls watching each other wee is undoubtedly a bonding experience, and it happens every night in clubs and pubs across Dublin. And I feel left out of that. I feel as though at times, people can be reluctant to share, knowing that their secret will be remembered.

It’s hard to shake the feeling of being on the outskirts of all the fun. No matter how much I laugh, dance, sing, flirt, share… I never feel like one of the gang. And that’s hard.

I mean, I’ve had people I’ve been out with disappear off into the bathroom to do cocaine, leaving me on the dance floor alone and left out. Knowing I definitely won’t take part, and assuming I won’t want to be present for the drug taking, they sneak off without saying anything.

This leaves me (a) alone, and (b) feeling like the ‘big kids’ are gone off to do adult stuff that I wouldn’t understand. And while I’m feeling needy on the dance floor I’ll add in a third thing: I miss out on whatever inevitable craic happens in the loo. I don’t want to do drugs, of course. But I don’t judge, and I don’t need anyone to protect me from being ‘exposed’ to debauchery in any form.

Oh, and drunk people take twice as long as sober people to do things, so when the bathroom lols start to happen, it can result in a lot of time spent loitering by yourself.

My close friends, I might add, are spectacular, and would never do anything on a night out to purposely make me feel left out. They know who they are. My choices are my choices, and that’s all on me. They’re entitled to enjoy their night to the full, and I love seeing them do just that. And I love facilitating it in any way I can.

I will gladly collect and drop home every single friend of mine, just to make sure we’re all together, having fun and not spending all of our money on taxis – more drink, yay! And I will make playlists. And I will do their make-up. And I will do a 3am chip run if needs be. All of those things I LOVE doing, and wouldn’t swap those experiences for the world.

The Day After The Night Out…

I remember everything. I remember who scored who, who played air guitar with a bartenders leg, who booty called their ex and who went home in the worst state. I don’t, however, judge anyone. For any of those things. Because, believe it or not, all those things apply to me when sober, which in a way is worse. I’ve no booze fueling me and giving me an excuse to carry on.

I remember everything. But for some people, this is a dangerous currency. They don’t want evidence, they tell me. They don’t want to hear stories of hilarious things they did while drunk, I’m assured. And as for pictures?? Only filtered ones from before 10pm, I’m told. Recalling the craic is the ONE available avenue that I have for sharing in the fun from the night before, and they don’t want it?? What??

But they DO want it, just not from me.

When a fellow drunk person offers up the hilarious story, they’re only dying to hear it. Dying to reminisce about how locked they were, how funny that moment was, how they can’t remember getting home and isn’t that just GAS. But if I try to remind them of their antics (in a completely nonjudgmental way) I’m the liability – the person they’re embarrassed to be around the next day. And that’s a bit shite, really.

And as for the hangovers? I obviously don’t have them. And despite hearing regularly how horrible they are, I have often wished for one just so I can take part in the complaining. Just so I can share the “oh god, I’m about to die…” text messages that go back and forth. So I have ‘an excuse’ to go to Eddie Rockets and inhale a portion of garlic cheese fries.

My choice not to drink alcohol wasn’t one I very deliberately made at a young age, or anything. I kind of just… never started. My reasons for not drinking are mixed – I don’t particularly like the taste of it but that I could get around with sugary cocktails I’m sure.

What I don’t like is the feeling of not being 100% in control of what I do, what I say, where I go, how I act etc. I like the thoughts that I can drive myself home from wherever I am, at whatever time I need to leave. I like the hangover-free weekends. I like how I rarely have skin breakouts caused by alcohol. I like imagining the waiting list there’d be for my liver if I pop my clogs.

I see articles all the time online that are, to me and other teetotalers, a bit of a slap in the face. “13 things to do when the pubs close for Good Friday” or “18 ways to have fun without drinking” or “Dry January: A survival guide.” Well, lads. My whole life is one lonnnnng dry January. And I get on just fine, thanks very much. It’s weird how the whole country seems to be under the illusion that drinking is the single available route to fun, and without it, people are wandering the streets aimlessly, waiting for stimulation. Cut the gen-pop a bit of slack there, maybe?? That’s a whole other rant…

I love drunk people. I appreciate 100% that there are people that enjoy alcohol in moderation, and some that really need a bit of dutch courage to do certain things and love the feeling it gives them. I even love the people who take moderation to another level at times, and push the boundaries of how much vodka one person can safely consume in a night. I’ve been at parties where there’s been people on ALL sorts of stuff, from drink to I don’t even know what else, and I’ve loved every second, and I’ve immersed myself in the experience as much as I could – just without partaking, myself, in the controlled substances. Drinking is fun, it’s a way to relax and it’s a wonderful way to spend time. Not for me, of course, but that doesn’t mean I don’t know and understand all of those things.

Not drinking is my choice. Probably one of the best I’ve ever made, and one I know I won’t go back on. Ireland is a funny old place to be teetotal, and I genuinely wish sometimes that some seismic cultural shift will happen and the pub won’t be the centre of the social universe here for a while. Unlikely, but a sober girl can dream.

signature

Job’s a good ‘un! Cool careers: Part 2

Yesterday I discovered that tour managing a band means you have to wait around a lot (with Courtney Cox and Jay Leno and the like) and that being head pastry chef of the best loved cake shop in Dublin means you see a LOT of 4.15am starts and a lot of carrot cake… Today?

Two women on totally different career paths, both fascinate me completely, hopefully you’ll agree! Rachel Wallace, model with the Andrea Roche agency, and Katie Tsouros, CEO of Artfetch, an online art retailer…

RACHEL WALLACE

rachel wallace modelIf you’d to describe your job in one sentence…
A barrel of laughs with crazy people and each day is different to the next!

If you’d to describe your job in one WORD…
Exciting!
 A
What exactly is your job title and ‘official’ role?
My job title is model/presenter and my role is to be fabulous! No I’m joking, haha! My day job (at The Wright Venue) is front of house and my role is marketing , social media and bookings
 A
What do people *think* your job entails?
People think my job is flouncing around in pretty outfits…
 A
What does your job *really* entail?
My job isnt one you can fall out of bedm get it done and go home again, you’re constantly working on yourself to ensure you look and feel healthy in order to continually get work. It’s tough and you really have to put yourself out there, it’s not all glamour! It’s difficult at times but the benefits and people you meet are so incredibly worth it
A
How did you get from school to where you are now?
When I was in school I was still training for the Irish gymnastics team! I was sadly diagnosed with a tumour and that dream ended. To cheer me up my grandmother entered me into a beauty contest to keep me busy and I was quickly signed up by an agency and now I’m here, model by day, crazy lady in her twenties by night
A
What are the job prospects like in your industry?
In my industry I feel like so many doors can be opened, the opportunities are endless to be honest. I’ve managed to break into TV and I have been presenting for over a year now, I do not have a marketing degree yet from using the skills I have picked up and the contacts I have, I have a day job doing just that: marketing and social media. Being a model is a platform for any vocation, as it builds character and confidence and you build up a fantastic contact base that can help you in so many areas! I know the people I’ve met over the years no matter what project I’m involved with always reach out a helping hand, it’s a real community, I feel.
A
What is the coolest thing about your job?
I think the coolest thing would be people you meet! You never know who it can be and you spark up friendships with wonderful people from different countries and lives and it’s very interesting!
A
What is your least favourite thing about your job?
My least favoutite thing would be the scrutiny you get, people can be very quick to judge and sometimes criticism which isn’t constructive is just plain hurtful!
A
Was what you’re doing now always something you wanted to do?
No not at all! I thought I would be an olympic gymnast!! Haha!
A
Finally, if you weren’t doing your current job, what other career would you love to have?
I can’t think of anything else because I’m so happy with what I’m doing now and thats the god’s honest truth! If I said anything else I’d be lying! Oh oh, wait. Working in a magazine would be fun! Doing a fitness column or something would also be fab…
A
Keep up with Rachel on her Instagram here
A

KATIE TSOUROS

katie tsouros artfetchIf you’d to describe your job in one sentence…
I own and run a company that curates emerging artists from all around the world and makes their work available for sale online. (I sell art!)

If you’d to describe your job in one WORD…
Artfetchy.
A
What exactly is your job title and ‘official’ role?
I’m CEO at Artfetch.
A
What do people *think* your job entails?
Looking at pretty pictures all day…? (they wouldn’t be wrong!)
A
What does your job *really* entail?
A bit of everything really – as with all startups! Working on the vision and strategy for the company, managing a team who are based all around the world (the time differences get tricky!), meeting clients, sales, PR and promotion, sourcing and overseeing the artists, writing content… But mostly talking and telling people about the business 24/7. I’m a walking brand!
A
How did you get from school to where you are now?
My plan when I left school was to go to college and study business and economics, the CAO was filled in and sent away and I was all set. But I always loved art, it was my dream to go to the Venice Biennale so after my Leaving Cert my parents took me to see it. I thought it was just amazing, it’s so wonderful to go somewhere and be able to see the entire trajectory of art history laid out before you, right up to the most current and relevant art being made from all around the world. Anyway I decided I wanted to be a part of that, to learn more about the context of art making and eventually curate. So I came home and changed my applications and ended up studying Art History & Philosophy in UCD. I knew my interests lay in contemporary art and I worked in the Rubicon Gallery in Dublin through college. From there I went to London to do my Masters in Contemporary Art at Sotheby’s Institute of Art, and while I was there interned at Sadie Coles HQ, which is a very well known gallery working with some incredible artists that I really admired. After that I worked at Artwise Curators, a freelance curatorial firm who worked on really cool large scale projects for corporate and private clients and not-for-profits. I came back to Dublin to take a role with the Rubicon again and did a short stint with the Irish Museum of Modern art, before I decided to open my own space for young, emerging artists called KTcontemporary. That was supposed to be a six-month pop-up but I ended up keeping it for two years. Towards the end of my time with the gallery I started thinking about and working on the concept for Artfetch, and went straight from the gallery into it full-time, and that was just over two years ago.
A
What are the job prospects like in your industry?
The industry is well known for being one that requires you to intern a lot before navigating your way into a paid position – I think that’s especially common in the US. Large galleries and museums know that value of having their name on your CV and it’s very competitive. When I graduated it was really tough, it was just when Lehman Brothers collapsed and very quickly everything dried up in the gallery world. It tends to be a very traditional industry but I think now we’re beginning to see lots more opportunities that are a bit outside the box, you’re seeing more art startups and ideas and roles in the tech world and more independent curators and projects. The good thing about it is it’s very diverse and there are many avenues you can take – be it curating, commercial galleries, museums and institutions, writing, the secondary market, consulting – and it’s possible to dip your toes into a bit of everything.
A
What is the coolest thing about your job?
Getting the sales notification emails! Never gets old. Getting people excited about buying and owning art, sometimes for the first time. The opportunities and experiences that wouldn’t otherwise come by me – meeting fascinating people, going to events, doing press – all that stuff is a really fun experience. And I still really relish getting in front of a piece of art, selecting work for clients in their homes or offices and seeing it hung. And the amount that I learn ALL the time.
A
What is your least favourite thing about your job?
I would say the pressure and burden that comes with running your own business, it can be very stressful. You’re always worried about something!
A
Was what you’re doing now always something you wanted to do?
I never envisioned what I’m doing now! The things I’ve wanted to do have always changed and evolved – I wanted to be a museum curator for a long time but I don’t think it is or was what I imagined, and I always wanted to be in business too, though I sort of stumbled into technology, which I’ve loved. It’s amazing how these things work out and how that influences your path.
A
Finally, if you weren’t doing your current job, what other career would you love to have?
There are lots of things that I’d like to do – and will do! There’s great freedom in how people build careers nowadays, and I think I have an entrepreneurial mindset that will always keep me interested in many different things. I’d love to work in events, and I’ve actually started working on something in that area now (watch this space!). I’m also really passionate about health, food, and fitness, especially the effect on mental health, and I’d love to do something in that industry. And I’ll always be active in art, and would like to go back to curating in some form, potentially even a Phd way down the line. But Artfetch will be keeping me busy for a while.
A
Go check out what Artfetch has to offer for art lovers on any budget right here
a
Tomorrow, my last (and possibly my favourite!) career interview with a West End star who I have known for ages and always knew would end up super successful on stage…

signature

Job’s a good ‘un! Cool careers: Part 1

Some jobs are just more interesting than others.

I don’t think there’s a tax accountant in the world who would argue that his or her job is the object of fascination for the general public, but say you’re the tour manager for a massively successful band? Or a super glam model with thousands of Instagram followers. Or head pastry chef at the most popular cake destination in Dublin. Then there’s interest. Soz to all tax accountants, btw…

I’m always really intrigued by other people’s careers, and how they’ve gotten to where they are. I’m possibly the nosiest person in the world too. So I hit up some people I know with properly fascinating jobs and got them to answer questions so you can all share in my nosiness!

First up, Colin May (tour manager for Kodaline, and seriously sound guy) and Eja Åberg (head pastry chef at Queen of Tarts… YES that delicious cake place everyone loves)…

COLIN MAY

colin may kodalineIf you’d to describe your job in one sentence…
It’s a roller coaster ride where no two days are the same.

If you’d to describe your job in one WORD…
Awesome!
What exactly is your job title and ‘official’ role?
I’m part of the management side of the band which involves the day to day running of the guys’ schedule.
What do people *think* your job entails?
Parties, parties and more parties.
What does your job *really* entail?
Waiting around a lot of the time.
How did you get from school to where you are now?
I winged it.

What are the job prospects like in your industry?
I think it comes down to being involved with and artist or band from the grass roots stage to have a chance of making it.

What is the coolest thing about your job?
I get to hang out with my brother and my best mates and see the world and meet some very interesting people along the way.

What is your least favourite thing about your job?
Early morning starts after a late night.

Was what you’re doing now always something you wanted to do?
I’ve always had an interest in music but I never thought I’d end up working in the industry that’s for sure.

Finally, if you weren’t doing your current job, what other career would you love to have?
I have a Private Pilots Licence, PPL, so something involved in aviation I’d say.

And of course, hanging out with Courteney Cox is clearly a big part of the job too, right??

EJA ÅBERG

Eja chefIf you’d to describe your job in one sentence…
I like that I get to work with my hands and experiment with different textures and flavours and make pretty things.

If you’d to describe your job in one WORD…
Exhausting.

What exactly is your job title and ‘official’ role?
Head Pastry Chef in Queen of Tarts.

What do people *think* your job entails?
I think people think it’s like the Great British Bake­ Off or one of those shows on TV and
definitely involves eating lots of cake.

What does your job *really* entail?
A lot of repetition, it’s hard work. Often it’s making things that sell well as opposed to
what’s fun to make. There’s a lot of carrot cake to be made!

How did you get from school to where you are now?
After school I pursued my qualifications as a Pastry Chef attending baking school for three years and gaining some valuable experience in a number of restaurants and bakeries.

What are the job prospects like in your industry?
Quite good, there’s positions posted regularly for pastry chefs.

What is the coolest thing about your job?
I get to bake, bake, bake all day everyday!

What is your least favourite thing about your job?
Getting up at 4.15am… Also weekends are our busiest times.

Was what you’re doing now always something you wanted to do?
Yes, I grew up loving to bake with my mom, it’s always been something I wanted to do.

Finally, if you weren’t doing your current job, what other career would you love to
have?
To be a chef!!

Tomorrow, one of Ireland’s top models and an entrepreneur who is already CEO of her own art company…

signature

 

Instafake? Flatlay vs Reality

Competition.

It’s what the internet seems to have turned into, recently. A constant battle to out-do everyone else based on what pictures and statuses you post to social media.

Who has the best #nofilter picture of the sky? Who has the hottest bikini selfie? Who has the most modern looking house, complete with shining iMac and scented candles? We’re all guilty of it – posting the highlights of our lives as a subtle brag to the world that things are going well. But most of the time, the highlights don’t paint the full picture.

Without getting too serious about it, I’ll give an example. The other day, I posted this (extreeeemely staged) flatlay to my Instagram account. Now, it’s true to life in that, that is my laptop, those are my books, notepads, make-up bits and yes, that plant is mine (albeit a fake one from IKEA).

flatlay deskI made the picture look lovely, because like… isn’t that the purpose of Instagram?

But in the interest of full disclosure, I decided to do this blog post and show you what my ‘desk’ usually looks like at home. Here it is:

flatlay reality

I’m in bed. I’m comfy. I’ve got a springy bobbin I’ve just taken out of my hair, I’ve my pen and paper, my lip balm, and I’m doing actual work. This is a real workspace. The other one? Fictional, by all accounts.

Sometimes, things really do look THAT good. Some people have houses and desks worthy of interiors magazines.

But most of us don’t. And that’s fine! I know I certainly don’t. I love a good flatlay, and god knows I only post the highlights on social media (the cleanest my room will ever be, that one in a million day when my hair was shiny all by itself and the only angle my face ever looks half-decent at). Those people with squeaky clean, all-white gafs are living a totally different life than you.

So be okay with the fact that you’d to use 18 different filters on every photo of your last night out (guilty!) and that you take picture of your Sunday brunch because it’s the only meal of the week that ISN’T beans on toast.

You’re normal. They’re the exception. And you don’t need to compete!

signature

UGH: 13 Things…

….that make you say UGH in an ordinary day

1. Putting on skinny jeans post-gym shower. Literally the most awkward thing ever. You’re kinda moist, a little sweaty and there are people around watching you hurl yourself around the changing room like you’re doing hardcore modern dance.

2. When you’re in a rush somewhere and the driver of the car in front of you is going so slowly that you are five seconds from ACTUALLY ramming them with your own car.

3. Those glass Heinz ketchup bottles?? The ones that NEVER seem to pour without you breaking your hand smacking the bottom of the things?? THOSE. Nandos, just go for squeezies. We won’t judge.

ketchup bottle

4. Ireland’s spastic weather makes this one a regular –  when it’s super bright out but also raining, and you’ve got sunglasses on that get all wet from the rain and then you’ve to clean them and they go all foggy.

5. When you’re queueing for something and you pick a lane. Then ALL the other lanes move at high speed except yours. So you switch. And THEN your initial queue lane starts flying. Applies to both shops/fast food establishments AND traffic.

6. That soul-destroying moment when your sat-nav voiceover lady comes on to direct you JUST as an amazing bit of the song you’re listening to happens. Way to ruin a crescendo, Google maps girl.

taydisapp

7. Emailing at such a frantic pace that you accidentally tell several people you’re ‘pancaked’ instead of ‘panicked’ – yes, this one happened to me recently.

8. WHEN MCDONALDS DON’T PUT THE SAUCES IN THE BAG. They’re so essential to the meal that you might as well not have even GONE. Saaaaake.

9. Phone calls dropping. This is 2015, man. What is the problem?!?!

disappkaty

10. You FINALLY get a lie on after the longest god damn week in the history of long weeks…. And you’re wide awake at 7am. This sort of thing never would’ve happened when you were a teenager.

11. Those people on Facebook/Instagram/your social network of choice that are obviously having a life meltdown and start posting inspirational quotes or phrases CLEARLY directed at someone in an entirely passive aggressive way. Cue the ‘hope you’re okay hun’ influx.

newgapp

12. You have a MARE of a commute to do and you leave the house without your earphones. And you know your train carriage will not appreciate you blaring Toto’s Africa between Malahide and Dun Laoghaire…

13. When you’re in bad humour, for whatever reason, and someone says to you “cheer up, it might never happen!” and you want to (a) punch them in the face and (b) tell them that ‘it’, in fact, DID happen, and otherwise your mood would be fine.

facepalm gif

 

TELL ME YOURS, I WILL LIVE VICARIOUSLY THROUGH YOUR WOES.

signature