You can’t draw (or letter or design or whatever…) you say? Bullshit. You DON’T do these things is most likely the problem.
Having wanted to go to HOW and other conferences for years but always putting up mental roadblocks (I'm too busy, I don't have the money...) I came across the Creative South Conference website some months ago and was floored by the speaking talent that was going to be there.
I lost my way. Not exactly sure when. But it has been a long time. I am 40 years old. I have been doing graphic design since 1994. Almost 20 years. But professionally? Maybe the last few years. Allow me a bit of your time to explain.
I know… sometimes you need the money. You have to eat, live and enjoy the little things in life. But you need to stand your ground if at all possible. There has yet to be an instance where I have regretted saying “No” to a possible project. Without fail something better suited for me has always come along.
I was nearing 40. I was feeling lost, uninspired and frankly I hated my chosen profession. There were many reasons (divorce, lack of confidence, fear…) that brought me to this stage of personal and professional burnout and I actually was starting to actively work on reversing my outlook on everything but I was pretty spent and trying to find that fire that I saw so many other designers have burning inside. I wanted to have that drive that makes you not want to sleep or to get up early just to get back to the project you have been working on.
I did a pre-Creative South 14 post and told you to just show up. I also said you will arrive as friends and leave as family. I spoke the truth, didn’t I?
I decided after years of being a web/digital only designer that it was time to get back in touch with that kid, with that artist. It was time to make real things again. I decided I wanted to learn how to screen print. As it happens, when learning a new skill, failure is inevitable. Mistakes will be made. We largely learn how to do what we do by a series of missteps. We all learn, succeed and fail. But you only really fail if you don't learn from that failure and continue on your path.