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  • Writer's picturededmunds2021

12 Months in West Wales

So it's been just over a year since I moved to Wales, its been great to reflect on the last 12 months and set some new goals going forward, Its been a year full of variation, challenge, new things, letting go of old things and finding a more authentic version of myself.

I'm still very much working within the arts and culture sector, as we all know funding is beyond challenging right now and in my recollection it feels bleaker than I can remember in nearly 30 years of working within subsidised arts and culture, its a sad situation, I've seen more companies and arts organisations go under this year than ever before and it feels like a worrying trend.

On a more upbeat note I've had the joy of working with some great arts organisations this last year including Wales Millennium Centre, The National Botanic Gardens Wales, Carmarthenshire Arts and Culture Team at the council and I'm continuing to develop some brilliant future arts projects here in Wales with great community driven arts organisations like Span Arts in Narbeth.

In addition to the arts and culture work which takes up around 50 % of my working life these days, I'm co-running a 14 acre campsite with my partner Sioned, I've co-founded the Dolbryn Creative Retreats programme for stressed out, overwhelmed creative leaders who need some down time to switch off and to reflect on what has been a gruelling few years for most in the sector.

I've become a farmer ( Pigs, Goats, Chickens) I've become a Tree Surgeon ( mean chainsaw skills) and a more then competent Tractor Driver.

And finally I've just launched my own Photography business, after years of friends and family suggesting I sell some of my work, I've finally gone for it and my first public exhibition open last month here in West Wales and I now have my own shop online, I'm blessed living here in terms of the subject matters to photograph, this part of the world is full of natural drama and delight.

Life is busy, but it suits me, my interests are varied and many, my skills are strong and I'm still learning, turning 50 is not that far away but I'm excited about what that might look like and how all the various elements of my working life combine, the acceptance of my ADHD has been a huge part of this year and although it has its challenges ( lets not talk about car insurance or form filling in !!!) I'm leaning into the unique way my brain works as a result.

This isn't in anyway meant as some massive boast or look isn't my life amazing in a Facebook style, at times this year has been super hard and so many challenges but its been a huge year of growth and development and its amazing what happens when you say yes to something and go for it rather than putting it off until a better time. Thanks for reading and if any of you ever fancy a visit out West drop me a message, we would love to have you visit, you can even help feed the chickens. - David x

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