Well, come to think of it, it’s actually more like a lifetime. You see, I’ve been the artistic sort for as far back as I can remember. As a kid, there never seemed to be a shortage of paper and pencils, or coloring books and crayons. Birthday and Christmas presents were often art-related. I attended various summer art classes and used the family Tandy 1000 computer to create rudimentary digital designs – in 16 stunning colors. This continued into high school, where I took nearly every art class I could get my hands on and even took private lessons for a short time. But that’s where it ended, for a while at least.
When I started college in 1993 I believed art wasn’t a “real world” career. Instead, I wanted to become a computer programmer, with lofty ambitions of creating gaming software. Those ambitions were quelled after my first semester, after it became painfully obvious that this was not my calling. Who thought I would have to know all of that advanced math? For lack of a better choice, I opted to major in communications instead, a decision that would eventually lead to my ultimate career path.
I decided on the media concentration, which covered everything from journalism to broadcasting. It also offered elective art classes. I took some basic art classes which allowed me to be eligible for the introductory graphic design course. I excelled in this class and went on to take the follow-up course my senior year. That spring, my professor pressed me to enter a few of my pieces in Opus, our college’s fine arts festival. I never expected to win anything, so you can imagine my surprise when I was awarded first place in the graphic design category! You’d think this would’ve prompted me to look for a design position upon graduation but, alas, it did not.
I graduated college with no job prospect in sight, and honestly no real clue what I wanted to do. I landed my first job later that summer and knew from the start that I wouldn’t make a career of it. I left there eight months later, feeling called into the graphic design field. I didn’t have a new job, so I worked from home earning money with sporadic freelancing. It was a great chance to not only increase my design skills, but I also taught myself HTML programming and site design during this time. It all paid off seven months later when I was hired for my first full-time graphic design position. 3 years later I left there for a senior designer position which I will have proudly held for 9 years this month. The years are just flying by!
All of those years bring us to the present day, and the launch of the re:Design blog. The name relates to how I perceive the world around me. I’m an improver by nature. I tend to see the beautiful where it doesn’t exist. I see an ugly logo – I want to change it, a dated sign – I want to modernize it, even a rundown building – I envision what it can become. And I get excited with each improvement, even if it was done by someone else. I am regularly impressed and inspired by the talents of others!
Thanks for taking a few moments to indulge me. My future posts might not all be as personal as this first one, but I’m hoping re:Design will be a place to share glimpses of my design process and what inspires it, along with a good mix of fun and practical articles on a variety of design-related issues. Heck, maybe this blog will even inspire you! Thanks for joining me as I strive to better our world with each and every design.