Category Archives: TAFE study work

We Have a DOT COM!!

It’s taken a bit of wrangling and a bit of frustration and feelings of “oh my gawd, did I do that right or did I just break it” but it’s here!

mountainmoonandsea.com

Notice how that “.wordpress” is missing? (Not that I minded it). WordPress is awesome and I love the things I can do with it. I particularly love that WordPress is cool with me taking their name out of my domain. I’ve not got the time or skills to throw together a kick-ass webpage without the use of a template.

Why do I have a Dot Com? Great question, Me. Because I can.

No seriously? Okay, because I’m expanding my hobby, trial business, fledgling business thing into something bigger, better, and more professional.

And you’re still talking to yourself in third-person and interviewing your (first-person) self? Yep. Nobody else around at this hour to interview me. Except the cat and I doubt he’d like me waking him at 1:40 in the AM.

Fair enough. Anything else you want to tell us about the new you? I’ll soon stop ranting about business plans, marketing plans and financial plans. As I’ll be finished my TAFE course.  That’s great. Anything else? I’ll be working on new product ranges with new materials and with new purpose.

What do you hope to achieve as the new you? World Domination, mwuhahahaha. Well eventually, but for now I’ll settle for creating some kick-ass ethical products, letting the locals know about it and hopefully finding some retail stores that like what I’m doing and want to stock my stuff…. Maybe finding my sanity, oh and some sleep. Everyone loves sleep right? We’re overdue for a bit of a branding overhaul as well. Pray to your deities that I get that Suncorp Grant!

Right. We do. So you best get back to work and finish that bloody assignment. NOW!   Yes maaahm!

Oi, you forgot to post a picture in your post! Ok here you go:

“LOVE XO” print by hark home on Made It

Much Better!  You’re welcome.

From both of us: if you can see this and not the “Crazy Domains” page it’s a minor miracle.

Got Something To Say?

“What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail?”

I had to do a powerpoint presentation for my Cert. IV in Small Business Management course it was scary and daunting, but empowering at the same time. It was part of the networking subject, as often at networking groups different people will take turns to give a presentation. We were taught to use an attention-getter to open. This is short phrase or quote that get’s the audience’s attention and focusses them in on the topic you are speaking about. This has a particularly good impact if you can put up a visual of the text and an accompanying image as you say the words. (Having one of those remote controls for the projector helps). Use your strongest, most confident voice. Don’t let yourself think you’re not good at public speaking, because this just becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Believe in yourself and in your message.

By ValentinaDesign on Etsy. Click link for listing and check out her shop for more gorgeous zentangled artworks.

After you’ve delivered your attention-getter introduce yourself, if you haven’t been pre-introduced, and introduce what you are going to speak about. Show an outline of your talk. This will work a bit like a table of contents does in a book.

Clearly mark each new section of your talk with headings and sub-headings (my TAFE teacher said to number them all but I’m not convinced either way). Be brief with text and where possible use bullet points. This way you can talk to your points without having to know word-for-word your entire talk. Use diagrams, graphs and charts where appropriate. Try and break up long sections of text with images. I try to do this with my blog posts so my readers don’t get bored. (I know you’re a visually-intelligent bunch, like me!).

Speak Up print by TipsyMouse on Etsy. Click the image to see the listing and other art-prints with a touch of wit.

Be aware that people take in information in different ways. Some people are more visual, others more auditory. If you can, get your audience moving and participating in some physical way. They won’t forget your message and they definitely won’t fall asleep!

Every essay has an introduction, body, and conclusion, so should a presentation. At the end recap what you’ve said by going over your headings again. This will trigger any questions people will have. Let people know that you will take questions, or if you are not able to take questions let them know another way that they can contact you for more information. (E.g. After the talk, email, relevant website details).

As my teacher used to say :

“Tell them what you’re going to tell them, tell them, and tell them what you’ve told them”.

I hope this helps. 🙂

Changing Lanes

Sometimes in life you see that as your journey progresses down the multi-lane highway that an opportunity to travel a little better, a little faster, a little more smoothly arises and so you change lanes. If you’re driving in Sydney traffic no matter what lane you pick it too will eventually present its own issues and you’ll need to change lanes again, either back to where you were or to a different lane altogether.

The time has come for me to change lanes with Mountain Moon And Sea. We got into the lane of volunteering and stocking with I Heart Gallery as it was a great opportunity and full of promise. After about 3 months in that lane I have realised that the travel to and from Sydney, the coffee I needed to get me through the day and the take away food were taking their toll on my health and my wallet. Being run-down physically meant that I had fallen a little behind in my TAFE work and struggling to catch up is stressing me.

After doing some brain-storming and a SWOT analysis I realised that there was more to why this lane wasn’t working for me anymore. I brainstormed what I saw in I Heart Gallery in terms of target market, political beliefs and the sort of energy is had as a space. I Heart Gallery is young, “alternative”, subversive, decidedly young, overtly sexual and politically charged with a dash of cutesyness, some pop culture iconography and pinch of retro-cool to balance it out a little. There is also a certain chaotic flair in I Heart Gallery which is very at home in the Inner West. I Heart is cool, fashionable and will be popular with those that the rest of society may label as “Goth”, “Emo” or “Hipster”. This would have sat really well with me 5-10 years ago. But I am not that person anymore and the work I produce reflects that.

Mountain Moon And Sea (MMS) reflects more of who I am now, and who I want to be in the future. It is focussed in the Illawarra by it’s very name. I want MMS to be more ethically focussed, in terms of environment, sustainability of resources and supporting fair-trade practices. I want MMS to be a spiritually grounded business whose practices reflect the ethics at the heart of it, at the heart of me. I want MMS to be organised, professional, reliable and to build strong relationships with its customers, suppliers and with the greater community. I want the business to focus on hand-made items of artisan quality that are still affordable. I want the items I create to have their own unique style, to be beyond “fashion” and to hold their appeal for many seasons into the future, with the quality to last the test of time. The target market I am looking at for my products is older, more “mature” and more ethically/eco-focussed. There are different life stages in my target market to that of I Heart Gallery.

Image

Available at I Heart Gallery, St. Peters until Friday 27th April.

My time with the Gallery has been really enjoyable. I have worked with genuinely lovely people who have supported me and encouraged me in so many ways. I have learned a lot about myself, my business and gained some really valuable retail experience. Hopefully I’ve contributed as much to I Heart Gallery as I have received. I have been inspired in many ways and have many plans for future projects that I am currently storing under my hat until I am finished my course and in my new studio.

On that, rather long-winded, note I shall leave you as I have assignments that need tending to.

Dreams Under Construction

With all good dreams that are worth dreaming, they take time to construct. This one is no different.

I know what I want to do and where I want to be, I know roughly how I am going to get there. I want to run my own business selling things that I have created with my own hands. I want to learn about how to run a business properly and successfully. I want to be able to work from home so that if I do end up settling down, getting married and having kids I can still keep doing what I love.

I have a name, I want to invest in protecting that name and that will take money. I have purposely chosen something that is to the best of my knowledge free of copywrite issues or things that sound similar. There are no websites or campany names currently registered in Australia under this name, but I hope to change that soon.

My next step is to enrol in TAFE for the second semester intake for the Certificate IV in Small Business Management. I plan to study part time, two nights a week, while applying what I am learning to my business plan. During this time I want to create an initial range of products and build up some stock. I also want to enter the Scarborough Art Show in October.

I have a few ideas of where and how to market my product but I will save that for another entry when I have more details figured out.

In the shadow of the Mountain, housed by the sea,

Creatively yours, the Moon-Lady Diane.

Good Luck Buttefly ATC created in August 2010