While being on the cusp of a new year, I wanted to reflect on a few things that happened to me this year:
After the last year of doing it, I decided that being a freelance designer was both freeing and terrifying. I loved having flexibility with my hours and being able to help out around the house but not having a routine or other designers to bounce ideas off of. It really wasn't helping me. I also lost a good friend because of missing a deadline (among a few other factors). It was something I never thought would happen and am deeply ashamed of it. It's probably one of my biggest regrets of 2017. Sticking with that, I would say up this this point, my design career has been subpar. I have a few pieces that make me proud to have created but more then not I feel like my design skills aren't where they should be or matched to my contemporaries. It's more a reflection of my commitment in my offtime to my career and craft.
Though I loved the aspects of being a freelance designer, at the end of this year I started a new FT job (in graphic design) and couldn't be happier. Sometimes you get to a point in your life and career where you really appreciate having someone appreciate your range of design work. While it's only been a few months, I'm really excited for what's to come in 2018. I think this job could be a foot hole to propel my career in the right direction.
Another thing that grew over the last year, is my photography. It has grown leaps and bounds to what I ever thought it would be. About 2 years ago when I received my first camera (as a gift from my future wife), I never thought that I would be bit by the photography bug and truly enjoying capturing everything I see. I've had the opportunity to find a bunch of people who believed in me and trusted me to help them with photography and I'm humbled by that. I've made so many friends throughout this year and I'm hoping I can make a TON more. I want to keep learning and keep producing great images.
At this point I'm planning (at least) 5 styled photoshoots for 2018. These will be with a full creative team to really up the quality of my work. I never thought that I would be pushed to doing something like this but when I stand back and look at what I've done so far, the only way I'd want to move forward is to push myself.
I've learned that the most important thing in when creating photos is persistence and practice. We're in a time of great resources where you can learn a ton if you just observe, converse and study other talented people. I'm making 2018 a year for serious growth in my life and career.