2022, a review
Starting a blog
Something I’ve been pondering for the past few days is that 2022 has been such an eventful year that I figure I need to condense it down into something easy and small so that not only can I return in the future to recall it with ease, but also allow me to review it much easier. “If I’m going to write something, I might as well allow others to read it.” I thought to myself, and thus this blog was created. I am hoping that I’ll take some time in 2023 to write some much more exciting posts, but for now you have this.
2022 was an interesting year for me, it was certainly full of celebration and good exciting things, but it’s sometimes easy to forget the bad things without taking a lesson away. For example, this year I graduated from University, which is a big exciting celebration but also a reminder of how difficult it was to stay on track as well as how it adversely affected other aspects of my life. I’m going to go into more detail on some of the aspects of the year.
As I mentioned above, University was a large part of 2022, yet only taking up the first two quarters of the year. It is the end of 3 years of hard work and determination.
If it weren’t for my time at University then I would certainly not be in the place I am now and that is one of my biggest takeaways from it. The knowledge I have gained is useful and the degree I earned is great, but the contacts, experience and friends I made along the way outweigh all of that. I know not all University experiences are like that, but I was incredibly lucky to not only have a excellent lecturing team, but also the ability to connect with people outside of our course and university. I have made some, hopefully, life-long friends and relationships because of this.
I started 2022 in one industry and have ended it in another, sort of?
As I’ve mentioned University harmed my ability to continue my headstrong contributions to my job during the tough few months towards the end of the academic year. Whilst this was necessary for me to complete my degree to an acceptable standard, it left me feeling both guilty and out of place. I struggled to keep up entirely with what was going on internally and so that motivation that once existed, had fizzled out.
I was lucky enough to be able to attend KubeCon EU 2022, which was certainly a new and exciting experience for me as it was my first tech conference abroad! I was able to learn a lot about different Kubernetes technology as well as meet some colleagues who I had never met in real life. Plus, going to Valencia was just beautifull.
Not long after KubeCon, I left Ziax to start my new role as a Junior Systems Developer at KineticPixel (now known as KPX). This was definitely a dream job for me, something that combined my love for live events and video with my love for computing and programming. Also working on stuff that goes on TV is pretty cool! The past 6 months have been very exciting and fun, I’ve had the opportunity to travel not only in the UK but also abroad and I’m excited for what’s to come in 2023. If you’re interested, the first show that I’ve worked on to make it to TV is the second series of The Weakest Link, which you can check out on iPlayer.
Overall a good year for work, but definitely some bumpy bits along the way.
Some friends were gained, some friends became more distant and some friends disappeared entirely. It’s definitely been a difficult year for friends, becoming much more distant from those that I care about deeply through entirely my own fault. I’m hoping that with time, wounds will heal and I’ll be able to be much closer with them again. It’s also important to recognise that new friends were made and I’ve had some great times with them.
2022 was the year of my first pride! This is kind of strange considering I’ve been openly out for the past 4 years or so, but with lockdowns and events being cancelled in the past it does make sense. My first pride was Pride In London 2022, which I attended with my partner and our friends, although I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect, it was a lot of fun and nice to catch up with people who I hadn’t seen in a while.
As I had finished University, I could no longer live in student accommodation which meant that come the beginning of August, I would need somewhere new to live. The original plan was to find somewhere for me and my close friend to live in Cardiff, thinking this was a somewhat easy task it was left quite late in the day to be started. That plan was also changed when my partner was suddenly and unexpectedly let go from their job, now allowing the option for them to move to Cardiff and live with me. Unfortunately, we were unable to find anywhere by the time I needed to be out of my student accommodation, so I had to move back home with my parents temporarily. Luckily after a few months of searching for somewhere, and my partner getting a new job in the area, we were able to move into a flat at the end of October! We still don’t have a sofa, but that’s to be worked on!
2022 was a hell of a year for me volunteering. I now volunteer mainly with 4 organisations throughout the year, each with its own big special event at some point during. Firstly, Pride Cymru, my second Pride! This was a new volunteering opportunity for me this year, mainly just helping with running the Cabaret stage on the day of the event. It was a fun few days getting to meet different people from across the community in Wales and helping to celebrate us. I was lucky enough to be asked to join Pride Cymru as a part of their all-year-round team to help organise stages for Pride Cymru 2023! This is an awesome opportunity that I’m very excited about!
Next up is Iris, I’ve been involved with the Iris LGBTQ+ Film Festival for 4 years and this year was my first year not involved through USW. I’ve become good friends with lots of the people at IRIS which has allowed me to not only volunteer throughout the year doing all sorts of different things but also have a group to socialise with in person. Iris Festival 22 was my first year in the volunteer role of Technical Coordinator, helping to organise and plan the technical aspects of putting on a film festival. Whilst coordinating with the USW staff who have kindly donated their time and students to help us with stages and sound systems was something that I expected with the role, it also included ensuring that the film playout was correct and, at times, having to fix films that didn’t play out correctly. I learnt a lot more about DCP and cinema projection than I was expecting! I can’t wait to see what 2023 has in store for Iris.
Unfortunately this year, Cubed! directly lined up with the Iris Film Festival meaning that I was unable to put time during the actual event, however, I was able to bring my partner on board to help develop features and systems for this year’s event. Cubed! 22 was definitely tough and we learnt a lot from it, we know what we need to fix and what to improve ready for next year and I’m confident we can make it happen.
Finally, LoveTropics was the last event of the year for me. A lot of us on the organising team had burnt out over the previous years since with most things everything comes together last minute, and so there was a lot of uncertainty going into it. But, as with most things, once you really get your head stuck in it and the event is happening, everything felt so much better. This was my first year, in a while, where I haven’t stayed up to a ridiculous hour in the morning to ensure that there is someone ready to stream and in fact I had my own scheduled slot! LoveTropics is something I’m incredibly proud of, not just the event itself, but the small team we’ve built that comes together once a year to do some good and make something awesome.
Overall the year was good, but as I’ve said I also don’t want to forget all the bad and ugly things that happened. I haven’t gone into much detail about that here, but there’s enough here to remind me. Sometimes you have to make tough choices in life, but allowing time will hopefully allow the wounds to heal.
I’d like to thank anyone who’s interacted with me in 2022, in whatever way. I welcome anyone who I’ve not spoken to or interacted with in a while to reach out, I’d love to talk to you again.
So, in 2023
Going into 2023 I have a few big plans, starting a blog is one of those (oh look where you’re reading this!) as well as releasing more projects that I’ve been working on. Keep your eyes peeled!
All the best,