Hey, I'm Clark Aaron
I'm A Blue-Collar Graphic Designer
If you would have met me before 2010, you would have never guessed that I’d become a graphic designer.
Neither would I. Here's how it happened...
SCHOOL OF HARD KNOCKS
My father is a carpenter and I grew up working with my hands.
I have a Red Seal ticket in carpentry and If you would have met me several years ago I would have been wearing my tool belt and working hard to build up my small construction business.
Then the recession hit. I ran out of work along with a lot of other tradesmen and I had to go back to working for someone else, with my tail between my legs.
SCHOOL OF GRAPHIC DESIGN
I hated being a failure. I hated admitting to people that I was no longer running my own business. I finally decided I needed to do something different with my life…
It was high time I started making use of my undeveloped artistic talent. I enrolled in a design program at a local university. Those were the most eye-opening years of my life, as I realized that graphic design combines all the order and logic of carpentry with the beauty and imagination of art.
I gave it everything I got and two years later I graduated with a diploma, a 4.19 GPA, an Outstanding Achievement award, and a whole new direction in life. Talk about a 180 career change!
A New Career, And A Brand New Idea
After university I worked at a couple graphic design studios, but eventually I felt that familiar itch to start my own business. If you’re reading this you know what I mean…
I quit my nice, safe design job and started freelancing. I did all kinds of design work for anyone who would hire me, but the thing I enjoyed the most was creating brand identities for businesses.
I soon realized this was the very thing missing from my failed construction business. During those hard times why would anyone hire a guy who was unknown, had no business name or logo, and nothing to prove he was capable of doing the work he was promising?
I decided no one was gonna go through what I did, if I could help it...
Imagine if my construction business would have looked professional, with an actual logo and a stack of nicely designed business cards to hand out.
Imagine those cards pointed towards a website that explained what I could do, with photos of what I’ve already done.
Imagine the success that could have been mine.
I might be telling you a different story today...
One More Thing...
When I made that decision to do something completely different with my life, I was 26 and banging’ nails was the only thing I knew.
When I saw a job listing for a position at a design agency, I had to do a Google search for “graphic designer” because I had no idea what that was.
If you feel like you don’t know enough to start your own business, or you’ve already missed the boat, I want to assure you that you CAN do it. What you don’t know, you can find out. What you lack in skills you can acquire. And the best time to start is now.
If this carpenter can learn how to use a computer and build websites, you can learn whatever it takes to get your own business off the ground.
Now get out there and do it. — Clark Aaron