Starting from the bottoM
In the summer of 2016, I made a video and posted it on YouTube. I was about to make a drastic change in my career and I wanted to declare it out loud so I couldn't back out. No matter what.
I had graduated a few years prior, finding some success as a freelance illustrator for clients including The New York Times and Random House, but I'd always had a secret passion for graphic design. However I figured I could never compete against the thousands of fresh grads who'd studied it for years and interned at X, Y and Z. So I kept my aspirations a secret for ages, until one day I thought 'fuck it' and made a decision.
I was going to become a graphic designer.
I put that statement in a YouTube video, explaining what I was going to do and why. I quit my corporate dayjob and got on with it. The video was just a message for people I knew, my family and friends, or so I thought.
Some thousands of views and subscribers later, that first video has led to a string of content documenting my journey. I thought I was doing this alone, but the incredible community I've discovered along the way has proved me wrong.
Any previous doubts of mine have now completely dissolved. My process, education and experience as an illustrator (along with a tonne of design theory books) has helped me massively in developing my design skills.
Some wins along the way include: creating my portfolio and website in under 6 months, learning Premiere and After Effects, meeting Creative Directors to discuss my work, significantly growing my social following & time managing all this stuff whilst working in a restaurant.
My unconventional background has made me stronger and my unique mixture of design, illustration and social content-creation is what makes me stand out in an increasingly online world.