Happy New Year!
This is a collection of personal photos taken in 2013 arranged chronologically in a 12 x 12 grid. The top row features photos from January, the next from February and so on. I've made one of these montages every year since 2009, making this the 6th. Clicking the #montage tag will let you scroll through the full set.
A giant version is on Flickr.
The photographs serve as reminders of events from the year both big (going on holiday) and small (eating chips). I can't include everything because of the limited space but I get a nice at-a-glance overview. Days where I didn't take any pictures never happened. As always, I'll be surprised if this is of any interest to anyone but myself.
2013, Then? It Was Good. I Liked It.
What follows is a lot of words about myself broken down into sections that you can skim-read (or not-read).
2013 was definitely a year of playing safe, work-wise. Being my first January - December as a full-time freelancer, my main concern was making sure I could support myself - I could! While this is tremendously satisfying, it's also left me feeling a little drained. Work was constant, but often stressful. I've been stretched thin and need to be careful to avoid my work becoming, y'know, work.
This stretched-thinness has meant that I've not shared much of what I've done in 2013, despite liking most (but not all) of it. It can be hard to be enthusiastic after-the-fact about something that reminds you of feeling exhausted.
Fortunately, the hard work has given me wiggle-room for 2014. I intend to be more picky with what work I take on and more playful with my personal projects. I have no idea whether I'll still be self-employed come 2015, but that's what I'm aiming for. Being your own boss is pretty boss.
I'll put my best 2013 work up soon. A couple of my favourite projects are still secret, so unveiling them'll be a neat way to kick off Springtime.
My Nana died in December. She'd had a pretty amazing life and was proper funny right to the end. Cheerio Jessie Galletly.
Alex and I didn't get divorced. We don't expect to get divorced in 2014.
My dad retired! That's nuts.
It feels like I didn't see enough of my friends in 2013. Midway through the year I had a bit of a panic that I'd forgotten how to interact with people socially and I've been a bit awkward in conversation since.
Hogmanay was a good chance to catch up with lots of people all in one place. It was worth the day of puking. Almost.
I made some new friends too. Which is rare.
A lot of time was spent sitting at this desk. We took fewer trips than in previous years but we ate out more. I'm the unhealthiest I've ever been, but I'll fix that.
Glasgow is where I spent most of my days. I still like living in Shawlands. Alex and I are going to stay here for the foreseeable future, with one change - we're going to (try to) buy our first home! This is scary and incredibly boring all at once. Thinking about buying also puts lots of stuff on hold ("Should we get a new rug? This one's horrible.", "Nah, we'll wait until we have our own place.") so our flat is feeling a bit tired.
Recoat, closed their doors in July, which was sad. They'll be back, though. I hope to work with Amy, Ali and the team lots during 2014. For now, you can buy the t-shirt I designed in collaboration with Recoat and Tshirt Store.
Food-&-drink-wise, Max’s on Queen St. remains a favourite; The Glad Cafe here in Shawlands has become our local; Tinto Tapas on Battlefield Road was a tasty discovery (go on Tuesday); and I took to cycling to Mono if I had lots of emails to get through.
Paris & London
Our big summer holiday was a return to Paris. We stayed in Marais like we did in 2012 and it was a blast.
Highlights include: Deyrolle, the insane taxidermy shop, Keith Haring at MAM, which was top of the pop(shop)s!; eating pizza by the Sienne (pure sitting on the ground like a local); Dinosaur skeletons at Muséum national d'Histoire naturelle (thanks Jen and Alan for the tip); and watching Midnight in Paris with like, a million other people at sunset in Montmartre thanks to Cinéma au Clair de Lune.
On the way home via the I-imagine-it's-stress-free-if-you-don't-leave-everything-to-the-last-minute Eurostar, we also spent a couple of nights in London. This was also good. London kinda frazzles my head a bit and the weather wasn't great but, yeah, getting a (potentially final) look at Southbank, goofing around Tate Modern and generally being a tourist was fun.
Having finally finished my run as co-host of the Nicky Tams Pub Quiz in late 2012, I found myself in Stirling (my hometown) pretty infrequently in 2013. The whole Changing Room situation made me pretty fed up with the town from the get-go and, after living in Glasgow for 3-odd years now, the town centre's feeling small and a bit pokey.
That said, Alex and I watched Andy Murray's Wimbledon victory from a pub in Stirling on a sunny summer's day, which was nice; my homeboy Pictish Trail played with Seamus and James at the Tolbooth, which was niiice; and we ate out at Wilawan for my birthday, which, um, smelled nice.
I got a new computer! Jesus, did I need it. My old machine had been on on suicide watch for 18 months. I took the plunge on a 27" screen and instantly became a spoiled brat who can never imagine using anything smaller ever again.
If you use a computer for work, get the best one you can afford (I buy computers by patiently saving up small amounts over several years). It makes your life 100 times better.
Retina iPad Mini
My old iPad was feeling a bit creaky so I decided to sell it and pick up either an iPad Air or iPad Mini. I went Mini. I think it was the right choice for me. I use it way more. I chuck it in my bag. I worry about it less. A 16GB, wifi-only, lean & mean machine rather than a big, clunky, stuffed-with-music-I-never-listen to old dog.
Because I turned 30, I got an extra-special birthday present. A posh camera. I love it. I'm no photographer, but between my Flickr and my (much more frequently used) Instagram, you can see what pictures I take, if you like. The most popular photo I took was of a drawing I was working on but it wasn't the best photo I took all year.
I'm going to write a full post about what apps I've been using but, as a wee taster, I've been liking Omnifocus for task management, YNAB for being good with money, Tweetbot for Twitter, Soulver for sums, Mr. Reader for reading, Ember for organising images, nvALT + Notesy for notes and Downcast for podcasts.
Neither the PS4 or Xbox One grabbed me enough to buy at launch. I'll get there one day, but not yet.
I've been pottering with Project Zomboid on the Mac.
On the ol' telephone I've played a lot of Letterpress against my dad (I'm davidgalletly on Game Center if you want to play). I know it was released in 2012 but it's probably the best iOS game. Super Hexagon, also released in 2012, still has me hooked. Alex is addicted to Drop 7.
Disappointment of the year: Plants vs. Zombies 2 left a bad taste in my mouth.
I listened to BBC 6 Music all year long, mostly in the daytime while working. The lineup is solid from Shaun Keaveny through Radcliffe and Maconie in the afternoon (I have to turn off at Steve Lamacq). I'll occasionally catch Marc Riley, Jarvis Cocker, Gilles Peterson and Tom Ravenscroft too, all of whom do good stuff. I feel like I've heard a pretty broad, if 6 Music-y, range of music this year.
What did I like? I actually liked the Haim record (I can feel you judging me from here). Daft Punk didn't annoy me like they did everyone else but the album has been on approximately twice. It seemed like there was lots of African music around (the Kenya Special compilation is a good place to start). Lost Map's own Monoganon put out the stonking FAMILY LP and friend-of-the-show Jonnie Common dropped a hell of a pair of singles in Figurehead and Salty (with JMSSCT as CARBS).
My most played song was Ode to Banksy by Jesca Hoop, mostly because I listened to it for three hours straight one night at crunch-time on a deadline. The catchiness of it scratched an itch and the repetitiveness helped me get into a rhythm, I guess. Banksy himself I can take or leave.
Old stuff I've listened to: ESG and Life Without Buildings ticked my, um, moody boxes. Watching the Pixies documentary Gouge on YouTube made me dig out some old favourites (particularly U-Mass). The FFVII Soundtrack, Consciousness by DJ Food and Enter the Wu made me feel like a teenager.
Och, I dunno.