Inventing things

Preview of a new painting to be exhibited at my show!

There is a point at which you cross from fear to facility. I’ve just completed my first of two years of a graphic design diploma, which I take part time to complement my work as an illustrator. It means I’m more adept at all manner of file preparation and prepress, and have a better understanding of the broader design industry.

Our assessments began as simple copycat lessons, tracing logos and rearranging imagery, but somewhere along the line they demanded more of us: we had to invent something. I remember freezing in horror at the thought of having to invent something on that white screen, something that conveyed all the things I wanted to convey, and cleverly, and prettily.

I went to my sketchbook, I scribbled pages of roughs in black ink, and a tiny idea was born. I did it again and again. Ideas emerged from the chaos steadily and without headaches—some better than others. But the worse ones didn’t have to make me a bad designer. They just had to be accepted as part of the learning process. I put them aside and moved on, and dreamed up better ideas, and my technical abilities grew alongside them.

When confronted with a new problem, I no longer seize up with panic, but excitedly start bubbling with ideas, and this is a nice place to be. Getting here was a steady road of simply trying, finding out how things look and how they are received. It’s possible to invent things with confidence and glee!



News: Some of my note cards are available for sale at a spiffy little shop in West End, The Happy Cabin. The Happy Cabin stocks all manner of adventure boot, adventure satchel, adventure socks and adventure pants for both adventurous gentlemen and adventurous ladies.

If you can’t make it Brisbane, don’t panic. Clicking the picture below will give you free shipping on note cards and other goodies in my Society6 shop, until Sunday. Hooray!


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