2017 business goals

This is a bit different for me. Each year I have a vague idea of things I’d like to do within my business but generally I haven’t made any solid plans. But this year I have. I’ve even decided on a word for the year.

Sam Osborne Bigger Hand Lettering

So what does that mean for my business? What are my goals for the next 12 months? Well in all honestly I’m a bit afraid to say, sharing my hopes for where my work could take me is scary. What if they don’t happen? What if they do happen and are a disaster? You’ll all know about it. But in the spirit of my big, bold word of the year I’m going for it and putting it out there. Maybe it will inspire you to be bold and brave with your year? Maybe you can help make some of these happen for me? Maybe you can hold me to account when I get a bit wimpy about one or two of them!

For me ‘Bigger’ means aiming a few steps further than I would normally, saying yes to things that scare me and not settling for OK when I could push for awesome.

So here we go. My goals for 2017! Eeep.

Exhibit at a show. I’m thinking the London Illustration Fair after a fab recommendation form a friend (thanks Poppy!). I don’t know too much about this fair so step one is do to a bit of research. As someone who is very comfortable in the blissful silence of my attic studio the thought of spending days talking to other people feels instantly draining and terrifying. But I do know that I have to be the spokesperson for my work so this is my one big promise to myself this year – get out there and show your face, sell your work!

Create two proposals for children’s books and send to publishers. I’m not a great writer (as you may have noticed) but luckily I know a few people who can wrangle the English language with much more style than I can. We’ve talked about creating a picture book for ages so this year is the year we stop talking and start doing. I’ve got one story lined up and I need to work out a page plan, storyboard and some final artwork for a page or two and then find a publisher (is Chronicle Books dreaming too hard? No Sam, remember Bigger…)

A sub goal to this is to illustrate a cookery book so I’ll be working on some designs with that in mind as well.

Land two new editorials clients. I picked up a couple of editorial commissions late last year and loved them, really varied, quick projects and seeing your work in a magazine is pretty amazing. I’d love to do more of it this year. So it’s my mission to land at least two more clients. Or at least it was when I first wrote this list, as it turns out in week one of January 2017 I had an email from a brand new client about an editorial commission so I might have to revise my number upwards, shall we say five new editorial clients? Bigger? Ten new editorial clients? Who would I like to work with? New Scientist Magazine, The Simple Things Magazine, Guardian Guide… and the list goes on…!

Set up a Patreon Page. This has been on my radar for a little while now and I think 2017 is the year to take the plunge. I love the concept, which takes the old fashioned idea of patronage and gives it a 21st century spin. For a small monthly subscription (as little as $1) you can support your favourite creatives and get amazing rewards from them each month. For me I’d like to use it as a way to help alleviate the day to day pressure of making ends meet through client work in order to have time to develop some product ranges that have been sat on my wish list for a long time. I’ve got some ideas for great rewards for my patrons and hope that people will like the idea and come and be part of my community!

UPDATE Feb 2017: I’ve done it! It’s all set up and ready to go here – I’m so excited, I know it’s going to be a lot of work to drive traffic and market the page but I think I’ve put together an offer that is appealing to people. I’d love to know what you think.

52 themes challenge. Personal projects are one of my favourite things. I’ve done a few over the past few years from #365patterns to #illustratopedia and #100days. However I’ve never really got on with the daily challenges, life just gets in the way too much and then I feel bad for missing a day. I do draw for fun most days though so I thought a good idea would be to come up with weekly themes that I can use as starting points for the drawings I’d be doing anyway. So I’ve created a list of 52 themes and my plan is to create at least 3 pieces of work each week to go with the theme. Feel free to play along if you like the sound of it… or follow me on instagram to see my creations.

UPDATE Feb 2017: I’ve got a bit distracted by a variety of more political themes and setting up my Patreon page so I’m running with that at the moment, I’ll be back to this list if I need inspiration over the course of the year…

52 weeks 2017 creative challenge

So those are my plans for the next 12 months. I’ll try and come back and update this post during the year with my progress.


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One Response to 2017 business goals

  1. Emma January 13, 2017 at 8:56 pm #

    Go get ’em Sam!
    And a big pat on the back for putting it out there -you are so much more brave than me. My little goals will be staying firmly in my head…..

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