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#MeetTheResident – Naomhán O’Connor

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We caught up with one of our newest residents Naomhán O’Connor who has recently joined our Hill Street Blick Shared Studios.

Tell us a bit about yourself and your business?

I’m a freelance digital marketer, with a background in filmmaking. I work primarily for non-profits, managing their social media accounts, writing content for their websites, and helping them to develop, design and implement awareness-raising campaigns. This work takes up most of my time, but occasionally I take on small jobs in filming, editing and photography.

Any projects you’re currently working on?

Currently, I’m engaged in a long-term contract with one organisation, GATE, and I do a variety of work for them, including social media management, filming and editing video interviews, events photography, and website content writing and management.

What was the biggest hurdle for you starting out and how did you overcome it?

I came to this career later than most, aged 28. I wanted to be a video editor, but struggled to get a paid job with an editing company, and I couldn’t afford to work unpaid. After approaching every editing company in Northern Ireland, and being offered only unpaid work, I decided to try working as a freelance editor. It was a steep learning curve – building up a client list, learning how to find jobs and working out all the business side of things – writing an invoice, paying taxes, etc. I eventually found my niche – I got a chance to do some social media work and found that, combining this with editing work, I could make a living.

How do you stay creative/inspired?

I’m inspired by my clients – I like to find a vision in the work that they ask me to do, an end goal to focus on. With non-profits, it’s usually awareness raising. I love being able to help organisations find the best way to give voice to underrepresented communities or issues. Storytelling is my passion, and the work of non-profits is full of amazing stories that aren’t being told, so I feel privileged to be able to do something to amplify those voices.

Who is your creative hero?

I love the work of Louis Theroux, because he brings humanity to his storytelling. No matter how hated by society the community is that he’s focused on, he somehow manages to humanise them. I believe strongly that everyone deserves to have a voice, and that change happens through empathy, so I love his approach to what are often extremely controversial issues.

What piece of software/ tool/ equipment would you struggle to run your business without?

My laptop! And the internet! Most of my work is online, so without these two things I can’t function. For filmmaking, I couldn’t work without my camera, tripod, microphone, Adobe Creative Suite… the list goes on.

What’s your top tip/piece of advice for anyone wanting to start their own creative business?

Be prepared to struggle for a few years. If you can’t cope with the idea of not knowing where your next job is coming from, then be open to the idea that being self-employed might not be for you. I had a list of clients I would contact on a weekly basis for the first few years, asking if they had work for me. Be prepared to put yourself out there, be prepared for many, many rejections, and don’t be afraid to keep asking for work. Persistence pays off!

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Grateful to have an excuse to leave home for studi Grateful to have an excuse to leave home for studio building checks and mail collection and a few hours of uninterrupted work in this lovely space this morning
Missing this cosy workspace and our lovely residen Missing this cosy workspace and our lovely residents. Fingers crossed we get back to normal sooner rather than later and can enjoy our Fridays properly again!
Looking forward to getting back to this lovely pea Looking forward to getting back to this lovely peaceful space and getting some separation between work and home again.
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We know there are lots of surveys floating about a We know there are lots of surveys floating about at the minute, so sorry to add another one to the mix, but we are working with our residents to find out what impact Covid-19 is having on their business/creative work and what support they require to be able to adapt and survive the current crisis and we thought it might be an idea to put it out to our broader network to capture the opinions of a broader range of creatives whose voices might have been missed in the different arts and business surveys so far. If your creative business/work has been impacted and you would like to share your experiences please fill in the following short survey link below and in bio: https://blickstudios.typeform.com/to/I05hld
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Do you struggle to balance your finances within yo Do you struggle to balance your finances within your business? . Do you find the finances part of your business overwhelming? . Join us on the 31st of March for an evening workshop led by Rosy James where she will be giving some top tips and information on how to manage your finances within small businesses. . Blick Finance manager, Rosy James, will be offering some simple tips on getting your finances right – working towards the tax return of each year. Rosy, who has set up the finance systems and managed the accounts of numerous small businesses will be offering some great tips. . Limited spaces available . Book your space at : https://www.blickstudios.org/events/blick-academy-managing-the-finances-of-your-small-business/
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Do you struggle with being consistent and discipli Do you struggle with being consistent and disciplined with your goals? - Do you get overwhelmed on where to start when thinking about starting a creative project, starting a business or maintinnig a business/project that you have, but need fresh ideas? - In this 6 Week course we have created a plan that helps you break down your large goals into managable steps that feel attainable. - It is so easy to get swpet up with goal setting, dreaming big, but not feeling like you have the resources or where with alls to achieve it. - In this course we are offering you time and space to figure that out. Asking questions of what you really want out of life, what is your dream lifestyle and how can we create a plan to move forward. - It is extremely important to always dream big, but it is equally as important to do the work, create systems in place to get there and to be consistent. - You don’t have to do it alone. We want to create an encourage safe space to figure out what YOU need to do and what you want to do. - Time is something that we always feel that we don’t have. Therefore we know that it is hard to make time for ourselves and priories those needs and desires. - By choosing to do this course, you will be choosing to invest in yourself, your wellness and examine what you want to do and change. And what a better time to do it coming into Spring. The Time is Now, are you ready to start? For more information visit www.blickstudios.org/events/the-time-is-now-6-week-course/
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A chilly, but beautiful start to March in Belfast! A chilly, but beautiful start to March in Belfast! . . . #march #belfast #cathedralquarter #cqbelfast #creative #design #art #artist #artwork #wallart #streetart
#fridayfocus - It's that time of the week again wh #fridayfocus - It's that time of the week again where we share what's going on in this fabulous city! This week we will be covering Events, Funding and Opportunities & Business Resources. Be sure to check out the full blog below! https://www.blickstudios.org/fridayfocus/fridayfocus-events/
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#fridayfocus - A new weekly blog giving informatio #fridayfocus - A new weekly blog giving information about what is going on in our city! Check out our blog below to see all the opportunities available. https://www.blickstudios.org/fridayfocus/fridayfocus-funding-opportunities-studio-spaces/
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