Everyday you should be pushing yourself to create better and better work. It’s a good sign if you happen to look back on the work you created last year or even last week and you don’t think it’s good. It shows that you’ve gotten better and your skills are improving. But why look back at all? Just to pat yourself on the back and say look at that, you’re way better now. Why waste your time looking back at all? Why not just keep pushing forward and know you’re getting better. The Minnesota hiphop collective Doomtree has a great line. “We don’t watch the reply ‘cause we too busy playin”. It’s such a prefect line, focus on what you’re doing now and when it’s done, move onto the next thing. Don’t worry about how it turned out or what people are saying about it in a year from now. Do you really care if someone in a year or two from now likes or dislikes what you created? Don’t be that high school football star remembering that one touchdown he made at the homecoming game. Live in the present and push yourself now because what you did before is just a small footnote in what you’re moving towards. Everyday look forward and push yourself to create great work and don’t waste your time worrying about what you created in the past.
Week 130 of Type Tuesday. Each week I try and share five free fonts that I’ve come across for you to use and enjoy. I hope you like what I have picked out this time. Be sure to comeback next week for another great set.
There was a great quote from Ron Swanson on the latest episode of Parks and Recreation that really struck a cord with me. “Never half-ass two things, whole-ass one thing.” That was pretty much the precise reason I left Daily Planet Productions ltd. and went off on my own to build LooseKeys. I tried for almost a year to work my “day job" and build a business on the side. At some point I began to notice my work and quality slipping on both sides. I had to make the choice as to which one I wanted to "whole ass". The choice for me was hard but pretty clear, I needed to go off on my own and build LooseKeys. If you’re not 100% behind what you’re doing then you’ll never know what it can be or become. Building slow and on the side seems great but at some point you have to make the choice. You just can’t do both and expect there not to be any mistakes, you’re kidding yourself. Make a choice and decide what your going to “whole-ass”.
How many great ideas have you talked yourself out of or even failed to start because you talked yourself out of it. I’ve lost count on how many projects and ideas I’ve abandoned. I bet right now you have something you’ve been thinking about doing. Whether it’s a new personal project, a blog post, changing careers, eating healthy or just waking up earlier. When that idea first hits you, you’re ready to commit 100% to it. But then you don’t start it right away, you write it down in a notebook or decide to think about it some more. As you’re thinking about it, all the reasons why you shouldn’t do it start to creep in. You can’t let that fear or self doubt allow you to throw in the towel. Nothing worth building or doing is going to be easy, if it were easy there would be no challenge and what’s the fun in that. The next time that great idea strikes you, just jump in. Go all the way in so there is no turning back. No guts, no glory right?
"Dress for the job you want, not the job you have." I’m sure you’ve heard that before many times. Its good advice that can also be applied to your portfolio. You need to be showing off the work you want to do. It can take some time to figure out the type of work you love doing and want to be doing. But once you figure it out, you need to immerse yourself in it and work with the businesses and companies that do that type of work. And make sure the work is heavily represented in your portfolio. If your website is dedicated to wedding videos, you’re not likely to get a music video project. You have to show prospective employers or clients that you can handle their specific job. They may have seen the work you’ve done in the past but sometimes they just can’t visualize how your previous work applies to them and their needs. And doing a free animation for them just to win a job usually isn’t a great option. If you want to model mobile phones for commercials then you need to have a mobile phone commercial in your demo reel or on your website. I love working with startups and social apps are some of my favorite projects to work on. On these projects I’ve created primarily 2D characters with simple shapes. This is the type of work I continue to get and I rock out every one I have the chance to work on. Clients trust that I’ll be able to deliver a quality product for their brand because I’ve proven what I’ve done for similar businesses. If you’re not happy with the types of projects you’re currently working on, make sure you portfolio reflects the types of projects you want to work on and leave out the projects you don’t.
In this series, Sebastien Lhomme will be interviewing top motion designers and agencies in the community to give you the inside scoop on the persons behind the explanation videos we showcase here. Today we’re bringing you an interview with Brad Chmielewski, the talented designer and entrepreneur behind LooseKeys. [ Read The Full Interview ]
Week 129 of Type Tuesday. Each week I try and share five free fonts that I’ve come across for you to use and enjoy. I hope you like what I have picked out this time. Be sure to comeback next week for another great set.
I’m just getting done with a rush job and the coffee and adrenaline are still at peak levels. Rush work is work with an extremely short deadline, a deadline you usually would have never agreed to. As I’m wrapping it up I’m wondering if it was really worth it. I either take on a rush job because it comes with an extra bonus or it’s for a client I have enjoyed working with in the past and want to help them out. More often it’s the cold hard cash that really makes the deal seem sweet. However, after this job and years of accepting rush work it has really started to seem like a mistake. First and formost it really wears on you and burns you out in the long run. Was the extra cash really worth having to take a week or two off because you needed to recover? Wouldn’t you have been better off taking on a job that didn’t come with that bonus but allowed you to still enjoy the project and your life? The other reason I’m really over rush work is because the clients start to expect it. They know that if they kick a little extra cash your way you’ll bend over backwards for them. If every job comes with a bonus, is it really a bonus?
Don’t let the money blind you from seeing the amount of work the projects going to take. And no job is worth missing or spending time with your family. Talk with the client first and find out why it’s needed and when. You’ll find that even those tight deadlines can often be negotiated.
As hosts of popular video podcast Hop Cast—which has reviewed craft beer and interviewed brewers from Half Acre, Two Brothers, and Atlanta’s SweetWater Brewing Company—Brad Chmielewski and Ken Hunnemeder have solidified their presence in the craft beer community over the course of more than 160 episodes. Chmielewski and Hunnemeder recently spoke to The A.V. Club about how their podcast started, whether craft beer has become elitist, and how someone becomes a craft brew drinker in the first place.
When looking for top creative talent it can feel like you’re searching for a needle in a haystack. Especially when you are looking for a full-time hire. You want that person to be perfect, having all the features you need for the team and your business. It’s even harder when it’s potentially your first business hire. Something that I’ve been tossing around a bit lately. Trying to figure out the type of person you want to hire can be a difficult task. You are looking for a talented individual who you can work well with and who’s skills complement yours. Or maybe what you really want is another you; someone who can handle everything you can with the same sort of magic. But that other you isn’t looking to work with you they are probably running their own business and looking for someone themselves.
Instead of stressing over finding that perfect person to hire on as staff, why not take advantage of the growing pool of freelance workers. You hear everyday about unemployment and I’m sure many of us know friends who have been out of work or freelancers who are between gigs. This year businesses will hire more contract or temporary workers then any previous year. That’s a result of higher unemployment and more people wanting a more flexible schedule. A lot of the time many smaller businesses just need some extra support from time to time in order to help with a heavier workload. Hiring a freelancer is an easy way to help keep your project on track and not have to commit to having someone on full-time. I can tell you from the experience of being a freelancer and when hiring freelancers that they will work hard for your project. And the flip side is that it’s sometimes hard to get a consistent amount of passion out of a staff member who may be overworked and is thinking about the vacation they have planned next month. With a freelancer you get that valuable, fresh, creative mind on your project. Hopefully they bring something to the project that you might have missed or had never thought about.
Besides the advantage of having that fresh perspective on your project you also get a chance to test that person out before your offer them the benefits of a staff position. Don’t be scared about asking for help when it’s needed and passing some of that work off to someone who is more than willing to offer their services, at a price of course.