If you were to ask my mom, she'd tell you that I was born with the natural ability to hold a pen correctly. Since then, I've been creating art for as long as I can remember. But when asked what I wanted to do when I grew up, my answer would always change. One week, I'd be fascinated by biology, the next I'd want to be a detective. Or an archaeologist (thank Jurassic Park for that one). I branded myself a Renaissance Woman and assumed I'd never find a career that fit all of my interests at once.
For a while I gained some traction as a student reporter. I loved how journalism cut through the bullshit to explain complex ideas and feelings to help readers understand. But it was all so dispassionate. While working for my college's student-run publication, I stumbled upon design and it's unique integration of art, psychology, and communication. I was immediately hooked; here was a hobby in which I could learn about all kinds of other industries — and create art at the same time!
Soon I found myself working in the college's Marketing and Outreach Department, redesigning print materials and creating content. My journalism and page layout skills were put to use in helping incoming freshmen more easily learn about the benefits of a college education. At the same time, I started doing work on the side: designing logos, flyers, and other graphics for friends, family, and eventually local businesses. When I graduated, I dove right in to the world of design and branding. I read, studied and researched all I could to turn my hobby and passion into a full-time business.
Now, I've begun a new phase of my career. Rather than doing small commissioned projects as a freelancer, I now offer brand strategy and consulting services to local entrepreneurs. I focus on the bigger picture, and create fully-formed brands instead of just logos. I help businesses refocus their efforts and connect with more customers in a way that makes them feel proud to represent. With every new project, I learn more about different industries than I ever thought I could. I feel blessed to have found a career that allows me to use my talents to help people. My childhood self would be proud; I've found a way to follow my passion — and I didn't have to narrow my interests.