I’ve just put in a request for unpaid leave in work and for some reason, it has made me feel incredibly apprehensive.

Like most artists, I’ve been struggling with the age old ‘time and money’ dilemma and not quite knowing how to get round it.

Of course I’ve gone through all of the options… can I give up work? (NO) Can I go part time (NO) so what else was there other than to continuously use up my leave? (Which really I should be using for my own recreation)

So I had a casual discussion with one of my managers about it.

I can take a sabbatical for anything up to a year. Wow – that would be fantastic!!

..…but sabbaticals can’t be used for other employment and you can’t pay NI and tax (through work) or pay into the pension scheme during that period.  That doesn’t sound so rosy after all.

Unpaid leave though…. This can be used for shorter periods and you still get usual work benefits.

The request has to be made 3 months in advance, so it’s a while off yet, but the thought of spending up to a month off to do my own work (sadly I can’t support myself for longer) fills me with such uneasiness I can’t quite focus.

I think perhaps its the sudden realisation of ‘Yes you can’ instead of focusing on the ‘No you can’t’ for so long. That ….and with the odd comments already coming in ( you just want to skive off) I have to prove  I can produce a significant body of work during my time off   (albeit mainly to myself)






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