Posted by Martin on 4th January 2013

Positive thinking

The problem with the increasing capacity of hard drives these days, the more space you have on a single drive, the more files you can lose if anything goes wrong.

Unfortunately for me I found that out the hard way, not just once but twice. One of my maxtor 1tb drives died taking a load of my most recent work with it. Under warranty the drive was replaceable but sadly the data was not and for all I had a backup of most of it, that was unfortunately on another maxtor drive that fell foul to the same problem and was deemed unrecoverable.

Somewhat gutted by this but still trying to think positively, I have recently been looking to relaunch my graphic design career, although that positivity sometimes started to wane when I looked at anything designed or printed and start thinking to myself “I have the skills to easily create (or recreate) that, but without sitting down for some extended time creating a range of random copied or concept artwork to show off what I'm capable of, what can I do?” and thus my catch 22 problem begins.

How do you show people that you're the right man for the job without a portfolio to support this?

Determined that I wasn't going to let this get the better of me I started scouring all the discs, websites and email backups that I had on other drives and old computers to see if I at least had any good quality proof copies of anything that could demonstrate what I could do.

Finally, after a long haul I was pleased to not only find a wealth of old artwork that I'm still happy with by today's standards, but I also started to realise that some of the work I've done over the last year or so wasn't as basic as I'd branded it and if presented in the right way it could speak volumes about what I could do, after all, the say a picture paints a thousand works, so it's time to start being selective and hopefully creative.

As my positivity started to grow I started pulling images in from all over, realising that I've done some good stuff over the years and kicking myself that I didn't promote myself harder in the past, of course with this positivity also comes the fun of picking the best out of the 200+ images I've found and moulding them into a portfolio I can use to sell myself.

Positively inspired

Of course, getting back into design made me start looking back at things I'd started getting into just as my life started going downhill, things like social networking that I never really got to take full advantage of at the time, but looking at my twitter accounts and flicking through some of the tweets made by those I'd started following some time ago I began to find links to blog posts on 'being a self employed graphic or web designer' which started to inspire me further, giving me different ways to look at how I was going to present myself, as well as other ways to tackle juggling the roles of being a house husband, family man, designer, printer and games artist without the pitfalls I previously suffered in what I've now come to think of as my past life.

2013 has definitely started off on a positive high, although there are a lot of challenges to overcome in effectively running three businesses while trying to keep on top of the house and the usual problems that come from having a house with three teenagers in it, but for the first time in a long time I feel that I can definitely rise to the challenge and will be quicker to dust myself down and pick myself up at any hurdles I stumble over.