“To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all”
- Oscar Wilde
Welcome to Halcyon; a collective of allegories documenting, celebrating and shamelessly oversharing what it means to be the innovative but inevitably flawed human. Delving into discussions and ideas surrounding social issues, sustainability, mindfulness, mental health, world travel and generally exploring mankind's cosmic creativity, Halcyon aims to share stimulating stories and wisdoms inspired by the world, its people and our honest experiences.
Combining my love of visual art and creative writing, I have launched Halcyon as an ongoing public project that will guide you through the intricacies of the human mind as I learn about them. It's not all complex chaos though - I have plenty of fun travel stories and guides to share with you curious folk too!
Hello! I'm Annabel
a 27-year-old Fashion & Business graduate from the UK.
Four years ago, I left my humble little town in Staffordshire in pursuit of seeing as much of the world as I could possibly afford to (it turns out that wasn't very much). I did get to see some of Asia & Australia before an unfortunate series of events led me to an accidental move to New Zealand. After three years of waking up to remarkable, mountainous views every morning, I am now pursuing obtaining my residential status in Queenstown so that I can finally call New Zealand my home.
By day I work in town as a Buyer for a preloved fashion boutique, by night I uncloak all professionalism and slouch around in my dressing gown creating digital art, editing photo shoots and writing about my adventures.
Back in 2014, during my second year at university, I took part in the Erasmus exchange scheme. This enabled me to move to Italy for six months and study fashion at the Politecnico in Milan. As a naive 20-year-old who had never ventured solo before, this experience widened my scope on the world outside of everything I knew to be comfortable. I got mugged, hospitalised and nearly died all within the first three months (absolute chaos), but amidst the traumatic character-building experiences, I got a taste of what it was like to travel and live independently.
I had the pleasure of meeting other creative students from all across the globe during my time in Milan. We would share stories from our home countries over wine in the evenings and enjoy immersive cultural experiences around Northern Italy during our weekends. This was a pinnacle moment in my life. Everything changed internally. I felt an overwhelming enthusiasm at the thought of seeing more of the world.
I later graduated from Birmingham City University in 2015 and worked for a year in a management role for a fashion concession, whilst also beginning a side career in content writing for a creative marketing agency. The experience was invaluable, but the stress that came from working two full-time jobs was immensely depressing. After some devastating life events, my mental health took a severe nosedive and I began looking for answers.
I became acquainted with the art of lifestyle design and began a personal healing journey that involved quitting my hectic lifestyle, moving back home and saving up for a trip I have yet to come back from!
It was unnerving waving goodbye to a handsome paycheque, a guaranteed roof over my head and my loved ones, but booking a one-way flight to another continent was far more exciting than it was scary - and now I get to live beneath the Southern skies.
Halcyon originally began as a travel diary - so that I could document the present and remember my past. Now it has expanded and grown alongside my own knowledge and education in the hope of being able to share the life lessons that our world has taught me. I hope that you may find some joy and comfort in both my words and misadventures!