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Designers' New Years resolutions for 2013

For many, the new year symbolises change - a fresh start. But, as we're Creative Bloq, we're not talking here about giving up smoking or going to the gym more, we're talking about creative resolutions - things designers, illustrators and creative pros are aiming to get out of 2013.

So read on and find out what our selection of creative gurus plan to do in 2013, and leave your new year resolutions (we'd prefer you stuck to creative ones, but if you really want to get something off your chest, go ahead) in the comments below. Oh, and of course we hope all of your plans for the new year come to fruition, no matter how small or ambitious they are... one of them might be to get to some of the year's best design events.

01. Stanley Chow (opens in new tab): "Move into 3D"

A Manchester-based illustrator working for clients around the world, Chow is perhaps best-known for his brilliantly-illustrated portraits.

"I think I want trying to explore different avenues," says Stanley Chow when asked what he wants from 2013. "Being an illustrator, most of my work is print based and two dimensional." And his 2013 resolution will be familiar to a lot of illustrators working predominately with vectors: "I feel for me there is plenty of room for me to still evolve and to also work more in animation, motion and 3D modelling."

02. Tom Muller (opens in new tab): "Grow my design practice"

Based in London, Muller runs helloMuller. Established in 2011 and built on 14 years in the creative industry, the practice has a reputation for making modern, memorable and award-winning work built on strong ideas and unique concepts.

For Tom Muller, 2013 is going to be a year of development. When questioned on his ambitions for next year, he says: "To keep growing my design practice in its second year of trading after a successful first year. I'd also like to try to stay independent and work on projects and with clients that interest me." But he has something a bit more pressing: "First thing though will be a new helloMuller website, which has been in a state of development limbo for almost two years now."

03. Lee Crutchley (opens in new tab): "Promote myself more"

An illustrator and designer from England, Lee Crutchley loves drawing letters, as can be seen in his amazing (and very funny) book Quoteskine Volume 1 (opens in new tab).

2012 has been a great year for Lee Crutchley. His Quoteskine book was launched and brought him attention across the globe - no less from our sister mag Computer Arts (opens in new tab). And his resolution for 2013 is pretty straightforward: "Promote my work more to people who might hire me. And make it, or at least, earn enough money to be a normal functioning grown up."

04. Luke O'Neill (opens in new tab): "Work more with motion"

Luke O'Neill is art editor of Computer Arts Collection (opens in new tab), a bi-monthly, luxury magazine for the creative industry.

O'Neill has a long history in print design, but over 2012 has been working more in digital - both motion and interactive magazines. In 2013 he wants to continue this and more: "Getting more involved in digital is a big thing," he says, "but also developing my illustration work with a view to possibly putting on an exhibition and working with large scale environmental/exhibition graphics in some capacity." He continues: "I'd also like to start a design blog to sit alongside my site, travel more, and work and live abroad."

05. Mitch Blunt (opens in new tab): "Focus more on my personal projects"

Mitch Blunt is an illustrator from the UK currently based in Seoul. His clients include Little White Lies, Runners World, The V&A and numerous other high-profile magazines and businesses.

2012 was a great year for young illustrator Mitch Blunt, which he describes as "my busiest yet". But although Blunt is grateful for all the client work over the last year, his resolutions for 2013 revolve around becoming better as an illustrator - doing something all creatives should try to do from time to time: "I would like to focus some more time on personal projects next year," he says.

06. Jonny Wan (opens in new tab): "Show off my portfolio"

Jonny Wan specialises in design and illustration working across advertising, editorial, publishing, fashion and product design. His clients to date include Microsoft, Nokia, Urban Outfitters, Burton Snowboards, Audi and many more.

"My new year resolution as an illustrator is to get back on the road with my portfolio, pound the pavement and meet new clients in person," says prolific illustrator Wan whose 2012 has seen him working for some of the world's biggest clients.

"Working as an illustrator can be very isolating and sometimes the only human contact you get is through meetings on Skype," he continues. "Getting out and about will do me good not just for the fresh air but also for the feeling of physically being out there.

"Because of the ease of the internet, any illustrator can create a PDF of their portfolio and in seconds fire it off to numerous art directors. But to me nothing beats that personal contact you have when you're sat in front of a potential commissioner. There's a chance there to really strike up an interesting conversation and build in my mind a more memorable relationship."

07. Lesley Barnes (opens in new tab): "Start mentoring"

With a client list including Anorak magazine, Belle & Sebastien and Channel 4, Barnes' distinctive illustration and animation work has blossomed over the last year.

Lesley Barnes' 2013 resolutions involve giving something back. Specifically, she's started on a picture book mentoring scheme aimed at illustrators wanting to go into children's' book work. Called Picture Hooks (opens in new tab) it's funded by Creative Scotland. "I hope to make the most of that and come out with some really good work," she says.

08. Christian Day (opens in new tab): "Use new technology"

After a successful career in publishing, Christian Day founded Knight Studios. Over 2012 his agency has created stunning work for the likes of The North Face, Facebook, Adidas and MTV.

"As an agency, our resolution is to always keep delivering A-grade work for our clients, each year we try to better ourselves and grow," enthuses Day. "The work we do allows us to be creative across a wide range of fields and campaigns too - from online, to mobile, to installations to motion - so on a personal level it is to keep pushing what we do as an agency in all these areas, to collaborate with new and amazing talents and to use emerging technology in new and creative ways."

  • Read about the innovative ways designers are using new technologies in this article.

09. Matt Booth: "Get away from the desk"

Experimental designer Matt Booth is founder of BLABTalks (opens in new tab) and NorthernDigitals (opens in new tab).

We're big fans of the experimental digital creations of Matt Booth, but his 2013 resolution is, contrarywise, to "get away from the desk and make some things. Preferably out of wood. Cue the joiner father-in-law". We can't wait to see what he comes up with!

10. Hello Creatives: "Use Comic Sans"

Hello Creatives is "a collective of humans being creative. 'Help More Make More' is our M.O".

Finally, the creative network Hello Creatives poses an intriguing challenge all designers can respond to. Its 2013 resolution is: "the ultimate challenge. Use Comic Sans successfully. Then we can rest."

Plus a few more from our Twitter followers...

@ellaing: Spend some time back to pencil, paper and ink, the best treatment for cybersickness, running apart!

@CChocobo: Learn After Effects and InDesign. Try a new process: screenprint, monoprint, etc.

@AnthonyDry: To start experimenting with my personal work a lot more, although our new baby may thwart that!

@ChrisSpalton: Get my name out more, hone my skills, do more freelancing!

@MickStatham_: My new year resolutions are to illustrate more, kick the day job and be inspired.

@DerecThompson: I'm getting a head start on my resolution and currently crafting a site with lots of lovely SVGs instead of PNGs.

@julia_design: Would love to do some food packaging. Illustration or design-wise.

We'd love to hear YOUR 2013 resolutions too! Share them in the comments below...

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The Creative Bloq team is made up of a group of design fans, and has changed and evolved since Creative Bloq began back in 2012. The current website team consists of six full-time members of staff: Editor Kerrie Hughes, Deputy Editor Rosie Hilder, Deals Editor Beren Neale, Senior News Editor Daniel Piper, Digital Arts and Design Editor Ian Dean, and Staff Writer Amelia Bamsey, as well as a roster of freelancers from around the world. The 3D World and ImagineFX magazine teams also pitch in, ensuring that content from 3D World and ImagineFX is represented on Creative Bloq.