In Pictures: the Monochrome Hues of Winter

White Beaded Necklaces Sidai Designs African Fashion

 

As the weather turns, I find that my usually vibrant colour palette gets subverted by an inclination towards the monochrome. It's clearest when it comes to my wardrobe but, I realised it happening with the photos I was taking too! Here are a few …

 

Sandile Zulu African Art

[Above: sculpture by Sandile Zulu, titled 'Spinal Diagnoses: A Histopathological Case II'. Seen at the 1:54 Art Fair. Top image: Beaded jewellery from Sidai Designs, at the 'Africa Calling' pop-up curated by Shake the Dust which, returns soon] 

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Beyond Making: Non-Creative Business Priorities, for Creative Professionals

I wanted to be a creative professional because I like to come up with ideas and to make things. I wanted to be an entrepreneur because I wanted more freedom over my ideamongering (yes, I made that up) and my making. The hard truth of the matter is that, running a creative business is still running a business. As much as I would love to spend all my time developing concepts, drawing and designing, in reality that has often only taken up half, if that, of my work time.

I’m not complaining because my situation does indeed enable me to live life (a little more) on my own terms. With the wisdom of experience, I continuously make adjustments to free up more time and space to create. It’s about finding a balance. A team and a business partner can certainly help with that but in the beginning, that may not be an option.

Before you embark on your entrepreneurial journey, it’s good to know what will be in store – to appreciate the various hats you may have to wear by your lonesome. Here are ones that I can think of: Continue reading “Beyond Making: Non-Creative Business Priorities, for Creative Professionals”

Protecting Your Intellectual Property Rights as a Creative Professional

Protecting-your-Intellectual-Property-Rights-as-a-Creative

 

It was World Intellectual Property Day this past Saturday – an opportunity to think about our rights as creatives and why it's so important to understand them. One of the biggest challenges I have faced in running my creative business is communicating that ideas = money. Ideas are some of the most valuable things we have, especially being that we live in the Information Age.

When people commission Asilia to create something for them: part of the fee covers the fact that we can use computer programmes that they might not be able to; part of the fee covers our design and technology skills; part of the fee covers the collective experience that we have, especially given our different backgrounds and perspectives but; as far as I'm concerned, the true value that we bring is through our creativity – our ideas.

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A Success Reading List for Creative Entrepreneurs

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When I embarked on journey of self-employment, almost 5 years ago, I went on a mission to educate myself about success. I got caught up in all the fantastic things I was learning about business, finance, personal effectiveness and ultimately, about myself. So much so that, I can probably count on my 2 hands, the number of fiction books that I've read during this period. 

Over the past few months, as I establish my second business, I find myself ramping things up and making this reading part of my daily routine – at least 30-45 mins every day. The difference I'm experiencing in my mindset, my behaviour and my results is not a coincidence. When wiser, more seasoned and more successful people talk about swapping some TV time for reading – they're not trying to rob you of joy! They know how they got where they are. So I'm going to retrace their steps (these days I catch up on TV on Sundays when I'm doing my hair … but, that's a whole other post).

Below is a working list of books that I've found very useful, as a (creative) entrepreneur. We can have both (creative satisfaction and wealth). Here's to no more starving artists!

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Asilia’s January Sale

Asilia-January-Sale-Afri-love

 

I love running my own business and I'm always so excited to see other people taking the leap! That's what this blog is about – celebrating entrepreneurs (particularly ones in the creative industry). 

The company I co-own, Asilia, is all about harnessing the power of design and digital technology to help pioneers take their brands and businesses to the next level. 

To that end, as a welcome to what's going to be an amazing year (if you decide so) and, in an effort to kick things off with a bang, Asilia is offering 8 exciting packages for ambitious, passionate people, just like you!

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5 Reasons to Have a Team: Entrepreneurs Need People, Part II

Asilia Kenya team

Asilia UK team

 

Those of you who have subscribed to the Afri-love mailing list will have already witnessed me getting all soppy over my Asilia team. Those intelligent, witty, passionate people who I have the honour of spending the majority of my week with. My business partner, Andrew, and I have learned that finding the right people is possibly the most important thing you can do for your business. People who not only have the skills but also, the right attitude. After all, skills can be learned but, the right attitude is indispensable and makes everything else possible.

So why is a team so important? Here are the top 5 reasons from my experience:

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5 Reasons To Have a Business Partner: Entrepreneurs Need People, Part I

5-Reasons-to-Have-a-Business-Partner-Entrepreneurs-Need-People-Part-I

 

One of the best decisions I've made in my entrepreneurial journey is having a business partner. We've laughed and we've argued. We've been charged with excitement and been on top of the world, and we've also had our fair share of set-backs and disappointments. The consistent thing over the past 3 years is our appreciation for the fact that we've gone through all these things together. When one has been discouraged, the other has dragged them from the doldrums and kept the vision and motivation alive. As business expert Mike Southon mentioned at a talk he gave at our London office space, one of the most important things an entrepreneur can do is find a foil.

Here are my top 5 reasons why:

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Showcasing, Encouraging and Supporting Creative Entrepreneurship

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I observe that the term "entrepreneur" is nowadays appreciated for the wide-encompassing tile that it is. There are so many types of entrepreneurship.
To name a few:

 

Intrapreneurship

Behaving like an entrepreneur in your role as an employee of an organisation.

 

Necessity entrepreneurship

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November is Entrepreneurship Month on Afri-love

November-is-Entrepreneurship-Month-Afri-love

 

Before the productivity vacuum that is December (for all good reasons of course – celebration, family, rest, reflection etc.), this seems like the perfect time to devote to complacency-shaking, butt-kicking inspiration and knowledge, with regards to entrepreneurship.

When I use the term "entrepreneurship", I refer to all entrepreneurial people – whether they are employed by somebody else, cultivating a side hustle or running their fully-fledged own thing. So, if you're reading this blog, I'm pretty sure that includes you.

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Don’t Hire Somebody to Create Your Website – Do it Yourself in Minutes

DIY-Websites-Let-Your-Work-Speak-For-Itself

Getting a website is pointless …

We can all agree that, if you've got something to share with others – be it a product, service, idea or philosophy – you need to make it accessible to your audience. 

 

… Unless your audience lives more than 2 miles away.

I think the majority of us can also agree that, in this day and age, having some kind of online presence is a no-brainer. Especially if your product, service, idea or philosophy is one that can add value for people who may be hundreds or even thousands of miles away from where you are.

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