Blog #6 – COMM0014


By: Aydan Ruddick

The essence of who I am, and what I do boils down to a few key factors. I am an avid writer, able to capture the essence of moments within a plethora of words. This falls in line with my two streams of business; blogging and marketing. Initially for blogging, having this skill proves  extremely effective when formulating eye-catching and powerful posts. I am a music blogger, meaning a majority of my content is music related, and having a skill like this allows me to go in depth on the technicalities of said music I’m reviewing. 

Me and a monk whilst I was on a retreat in Thailand.

These career paths, and subsequent choices regarding them have been in play for a multitude of years. Ever since I was young I’ve been surrounded by music, art, and all things of that sort. This influenced me in profound ways, pushing me to adopt a philosophy around life’s meaning and its direct connection to all forms of art. The creative cycle that we commonly find ourselves in is one of complete peace, a peace that I search for in all I do. Being able to honour art, and look into as that of music is what fuels me to do the work I do. Showing this grandiose appreciation for all forms of art in the way of portraying it through another form of art is an inherent honor. My career path is an ode to my younger self, and the environment that made me who I am today.


Personal Reflection.

By: Aydan Ruddick.

Throughout this course, the importance of storytelling was outlined to me in ways I had not previously seen. What I once thought of as an important vessel for topics such as non-fiction, has now become an apparent marketing tactic to carry me through the ages. Outlining our publics, and what they expect from us is of the utmost importance. Learning how to successfully analyze, and connect with key publics of all age ranges is something that I will carry out into all that I do. 

Stories draw people in and hold them. The proficiency of storytelling within any media specialist is an invaluable skill based around historic evidence of what draws people in, and more importantly what holds them. The stories I want to tell are ones of artistic greatness, inherent skill and creativity fleshed out through my words and onto the page. These will be meant to inspire, and ring in our audience as through and through supporters of my work. I will transfer the skills learned in this course into everything I do from here on out, and tell vivid stories that utilize my skills in all I do. These real world applicable skill sets will help me in my journey from student to business executive.

COMM0014 Blog #1: The Shwe Dagon Pagoda.

Bustling streets filled to the brim with merchants and commoners, monks carefully walking down these streets in amber-hued robes, and an overarching air of tranquillity within the controlled chaos of 2018 Myanmar. 

My father, an aid security practitioner with MEDA, brought me here as a late birthday gift. A quick analysis of my calm nature would suggest I’d prefer a trip somewhere quieter, maybe a beach in Lagos or a Thai mountain excursion, yet the busiest of places have continuously invoked the most inspiration out of me. 

We stayed in Yangon, a beautifully crafted city that mixed modernist highrises, colonial architecture, and Buddhist pagodas like a 19th-century impressionist painting. In each hotel we stayed, we’d always have a clear view of Myanmar’s crown jewel, The Shwe Dagon Pagoda. 

This solid gold behemoth of a Buddhist pagoda seems like a home for the gods at first glance. Situated on top of a hill that hosts Yangon’s entirety, The Shwe Dagon Pagoda indeed watches over that city with omnipresent care. As we weaved in and out of market places, restaurants, smaller villages, and vast agriculture fields, the one thing I could not get off of my mind was this temple. 

During the second week of our three-week trip, we visited a fishing town just outside of Yangon. The air was crisper out here, and the environment felt all the more natural. We stayed in a motel just off of the town’s main strip and would get around on rentable e-bikes that couldn’t breach speeds of above 60mph. The view was gorgeous; we would ride up to towering hillsides and watch the sunset over the trees. Those moments were unforgettable, a seemingly time-stopping event that turned the world around us from a hub of distraction and racing thoughts into a transcendent moment of pure stillness.

That stillness would carry on the rest of the trip, up until its grand finale within the walls of the Shwe Dagon Pagoda. Entering this temple was like transcending dimensions; the gold-plated walls extended near endlessly, the skyline felt closer than the city below, and the stillness we had felt upon that hill was now magnified ten-fold. We had to take our shoes off at the entrance and walk along the shining clear floors with the most careful steps. At the far end of the temple, I met a monk; his name was Aung. This monk sat me down and told me to look at the sky and get lost in that moment. The tranquillity within his gaze showed me something I had never seen before, a man who was entirely at peace with life. He told me to remember the current moment, and getting lost within the future and the past would only be detrimental to me. I stayed at that temple until a blanket of night enveloped the sky. 

Leaving Myanmar, I felt a great peace that I had not ever felt before. Not only had I created lifelong memories, but I had gained lifelong wisdom in the process. The lesson I took from this trip and from that solid gold temple in the sky was; Don’t forget about the present by getting lost in the future, remember to invoke some stillness into your life wherever you can.