How I became a more confident Graphic designer and you can too

Being a graphic designer or a creative person in general can be difficult to continue with. By that I mean it can be hard for one to stick with being creative and not let society beat it out of them. Because as creative people we have skills and talents in us that we can use. But we let the day to day grind deter us from embracing them.

When you have a skill that is not being used and or a talent its just being wasted. “The worst thing in the world is wasted talent” – A bronx tale. I for one fully believe that having wasted talent is the worst thing. Because if you just stick with it and are able to get through the year of hardships and doubt you will make it.

Now on to how I was was able to become a more confident graphic designer. The way I was able to become a more confident graphic designer was by believe in the work that I was doing. By believing in the work it made it more fun. Also realizing that I had done the best that I could. But not thinking “oh if I do this and that’ll be my best”. Which in actuality that is not the case. Just because you work hard on certain projects doesn’t mean you gave it your best.

Because if you work at an agency or wherever you know how hard you need to work on projects. But you have to ask yourself “did I actually go even further to make sure not all of my work is looking the same?”.

Then the other way that I was able to become more confident was the steady stream of wanting to improve and learning everything I could. Another thing was realizing what I sucked at. There are ton’s of resources available to learn from. Also to help you actually get better. Just because you went to design school art school or whatever you call it, that does not mean you are the top of the line.

Becoming more confident takes time and its not instant. If you are a non confident person then you have to get out of your comfort zone. You do not have to do things that are creative to become a more confident designer. Main thing is to get out of your comfort zone and continuously push yourself day to day.

NO I don’t take Exposure as payment

 

As creatives we can be tricked verbally into the saying of you’ll get so much exposure. When you get exposure you’ll get more clients and etc. But to be honest this trick never works in most situations. Then which will lead us to being in situations that end up being negative for both parties involved.

What I want to say is do not involve yourself in situations that you feel as if you are going to be taken advantage of. The value of your skill and work does not mean you should accept pennies for payment or nothing at all. You have to remember you create your own value of your work.

If you feel as if “I have to take whatever I can get” then you will get whatever you can whether its little low paying jobs here and there. Especially if you are working as a freelancer you are running a business. You want to focus on should I accept projects and if I do accept this project is it going to be worth my time.

Exposure is a double edge sword at times. You’d be damn if you do damned if you don’t. With situations that people want to pay you in exposure think of it in regards to would it be a good use of my time. Remember you cannot eat with exposure nor pay your bills.

Dealing with Depression as a creative Person

Depression is something that a lot of us experience. I am not going to pretend as if I do not experience the symptoms of what depression is. You have to be more in control of your feelings and how to not let them determine what your results will be. Especially when you are doing things and not seeing many results if any.

Which can lead to feeling as if “why are good things not happening to me?” Then you begin to question other things in your life. Which then would lead to even more feelings of depression. You have to not let your feelings determine how you will end up. Develop more control over your mind and emotions.

You have to remember that there is no need for you to be so hard and down on yourself. Our brain can either be our destroyer or our best companion. One thing I learned from Listening to David Foster wallace was that when people commit suicide more or less they shoot themselves in the head.

So just take time to think how much your life would change if you stopped feeling sorry for yourself and fought through the depression and go to work. Whenever I experience feelings of depression coming into my mind I get to work. If i’m just sitting around wasting time I make sure I am learning something or doing whatever I can to improve my skills and move closer to my ultimate goals.

Remember  when you feel as no one supports you or they do not understand they are not meant to understand. You don’t need to quit or give up. Prove to yourself that you are  capable as a designer, artist or business person to do whatever you set out to do. But be honest with yourself and realize that its going to take hard work and its not going to be easy.

Believe in yourself and Your Design work

When we you start out in anything you have to believe in yourself. I experience this time and time again that believing in yourself and work is key. As a creative person we can doubt our work like no one else can. We tend to fall into the same habits of doing what is easy.

The way that I have gain belief in my work is to trust myself. I trust myself and the process that I go through completion of the work. I had learned that as long as the work is 95% complete in regards to my terms it will be just right. The 95% completion of the work will be as close as it can get to 100%.

I say that because there is nothing out there that is 100% complete. The reason is because there is always something that can be improved or has room for improvement. Being self aware of this is allowed me to develop a stronger belief in my work and myself.

Family, friends, coworkers and whomever do not have to believe in your work. The reason I say that is because its your work! No one has to do anything for you your life is your life. If your clients do not like your work then it could be, a number of things.

With all of this sad believe in yourself even when no one does. If you are not getting clients or making sales of your artwork keep at it. The amount of information out there is endless on you becoming better than you already are. When you start improving and getting better you will learn how much of an impact it can be on you.

Every wish we have gets granted

Whether you me or anyone else believes it or not every wish we have gets granted. Because the mentality that we possess as a living being can determine a lot. The decisions that we make in our life is what helps us get our wishes granted.

For example if you are a graphic designer fresh out of school and you are not able to land a job at agency your wish will get granted by you putting in the work. The reference can be seen the same as the principle of putting in the work. When you put in the work the results will show.

I will be the first to admit I did not have a lot of patience before I embarked on my journey of being a successful graphic designer. Because the amount of patience and persistence you have to have a graphic designer and or in any career is a secret.

When you realize that you yourself have been lazy and not doing what is needed to be done you make the corrections. Be honest with yourself and you’ll move a lot quicker in your profession. Because you may not know that a lot of people fall into the trap of being comfortable in the cycle of their day to day.

Your wish will get granted if you believe in them.  But remember no one else has to believe in your dreams and the reason is because they are your dreams and not someone else’s.

Give more of yourself in your work

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This may be a hard thing for some people to do. But you have to take the time to think what would happen if I gave more of myself in my work. The results would be greater than you could imagine. By that I mean if you started giving 120 instead of 100% in your work you would feel a lot better about it.

As a graphic designer we can tend to become lazy and set in our ways. Because when someone has a way they go about doing things they do not want to try anything new. The mentality is if something isn’t broke why fix it.

Well if you are not afraid of trying something new it could be a good thing for you. The way to give more all starts with you making the decision. You have to say I am not going to keep being average and that I will learn more than what I already know. The amount of information that we have access to there is no reason to not continue to improve and learn.

A good place to start is skillshare. I had found out about skillshare early last year. Skillshare is a great way to get started. Because on there they have curated classes that are not just all over the place. They have a recent promotion where you can sign up for 3 months at $.99 one of the very first classes I took was poster design class.

Then I found out aaron draplin from DDC has classes on there. Learning from him and how he works has helped me a lot and it continues to help. Therefore it has allowed me to give more in my design work. The process is what you can learn from a lot of people and use their techniques to give more in your design work.

There is no need for any of us to not be able to give more in our work. By giving more I mean to give more of yourself in what you do. Avoid falling into the trap of being comfortable with just doing what is required. Remember why be average when we can be great?

Why I stopped listening to podcasts so often

The reason why I stopped listening to podcasts is because to me it felt like I was being motivated but taking no action. There was something that I noticed about myself I liked listening to them and learning but nothing was coming from it. I was being a learner but no practice and or action was being taken.

So one day I started to realize that I needed to rethink my strategy with many things. Another thing was I needed to be consistent. The thing is that there is nothing wrong with listening to podcasts but you have to stop and think for yourself. There are many podcasts that are putting many things into your head and telling you what to do and how to think.

I am not saying that there is anything wrong with that if you enjoy it. But for me there came a time when I just had to depart from listening to certain podcasts on the regular. Because it just seemed repetitive and there was no longer much value in it for me. Another thing is that I wanted to take what I learned from listening to the podcasts and put it into action.

Putting what I learned into action is such a rewarding feeling. The same as the people who you get advice from that have built businesses compared to those who have not built them. So you have to take time and decide what makes the best use of your time.