Hello World!

I've done it! I finally launched my own website. Years of procrastination have come to an end. You can't image how elevated I am. This is been a sour spot of mine for such a long time.

I made several attempts over the years but never got anywhere. While I take on every client challenge with ease and dive in without hesitation, creating my own website always felt like an insurmountable task.

My moodboard has been collecting dust for years, and the business cards I managed to print were the only semblance of self-promotion I could muster.

Moodboard for the nagare website with lots of colourful pictures and textures.

What held me back for so long? And how did I finally break through those mental barriers?

Time to dig a bit deeper.

I have been self-employed for over 20 years and always had all my work come to me through my networks. I never had to advertise or market myself. The longer I've been in the industry the more difficult it became to pinpoint my work. Being a generalist, I bring many different skills to the table, each one valuable in its own right.

The idea of creating a website felt like I had to distill my multifaceted approach into one singular method, one defined role. "What do I offer?" seemed too big a question to answer for me. Physically it felt like stifling—like trying to fit into a box that was just too small. It brought back memories of finishing school, faced with the daunting task of deciding what I wanted to do with my life. It felt so limited and absolute. You get my drift?

I am no bird; and no net ensnares me: I am a free human being with an independent will.

Charlotte Brontë

I began to recognise that my primary obstacle was a profound fear of losing my freedom to express myself authentically, replacing it by being confined to a role or description. Freedom is my highest value. Where to go from here?

I kicked off with a focus session on a Miro board, listing my skills, projects, strengths, and weaknesses. Using this as a foundation, I crafted a potential structure and began fleshing out content for each section. Leveraging mind maps and affinity mapping, I gained clarity and direction. Before I knew it, my work instinct took over, and I approached the task just like any other project. It was a seamless transition—my muscle memory knew exactly what to do.

I found a basic bootstrap template which I instantly liked and started with the content. After setting up the pages, I fitted the content and worked elements and colours from my moodboard into the CSS. Slowly the visuals were coming together. I enjoyed hacking out the HTML layout, researching the latest CSS tricks and sourcing images which can complement the content.

In the final phase, I found myself surprisingly relaxed. I didn't dwell on things that weren't perfect or fully resolved. I even left some questions unanswered for the time being. After all, it's my project, and I have the luxury of time and space to explore and develop more ideas. It's a journey of continuous improvement—a work in progress, just like me.

And there it is—my website! I will continue to learn, refine and expand it. In fact I am quite thrilled about having my own playground now.

And best of all, I still feel free. Hello world!