Matt is a mostly a web designer, and he rides a fine line between being an accomplished amateur and a tentative professional musician. Matt worked for about a thousand years in marketing and doing things that were supposed to be not marketing but that were, really, before embarking on a new path as a freelancer.
Web designer and choral conductor
Psychology, biology and building surveying at Manchester and Reading universities
Sheet metal worker
On the Road by Jack Kerouac
Probably Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas or A Clockwork Orange, Schindler’s List and Saving Private Ryan follow closely.
The Who, Purcell, Handel, The Rolling Stones, Bach, Texas blues like SRV, G ‘n R, Brahms, The Small Faces, Hendrix, Beethoven, all English choral music from the 16th and 19th centuries, The Jim Jones Revue, Verdi. That kind of thing.
Reluctant but early start with the baby and the boy, working hours in the week have been erratic during the pandemic! I often do my best work in the evening when everyone else is asleep.
I live right next to a wonderful forest, so I try to get out there as often as possible, sometimes alone but usually with the family. I’m a dedicated and quite skilful DIYer, a somewhat dedicated and rather ineffective gardener, and I enjoy spending free hours learning, whether it be studying pieces of music for concerts I’m conducting, getting better at playing the guitar or learning to code.
What is the biggest challenge you have ever faced and how did you overcome it?
Probably moving to a country (a decade ago) where it would prove to be impossible to follow the career I dreamed of. That has never really been overcome, but I have to some extent displaced it by other activities, both professionally and for fun.
Mindset habit or tip
Look for the good wherever you can find it, be thankful for what you have and covet not what you do not.
Nutrition habit or tip
Cook with olive oil, try to choose food that does less harm and discover the joys of cooking.
Training habit or tip
Go cycling with a four-year-old in the passenger seat. You can’t get up out of the saddle, so you work MUCH harder!
Who inspires you and why?
Different people inspire me in different ways. Close to home, I take great inspiration from my wife and my children, again for different reasons. Beyond that, there are a few conductors I’ve worked, studied or sung with that stand out.
What one thing would you tell a reader who was looking for an actionable step they could take to improve their lifestyle?
Enjoy your life, do not be afraid of what you do not know, and be the best person you can at all times and without exception to those who are closest to you.
Link to social networks, website, products or services.