I recently graduated and am finding my footing in a new industry, figuring out how the working world – well – ‘works’, which can be a very daunting task indeed. Every step feels a little closer to solidifying a future, meanwhile the reality is that the future couldn’t be more fluid.
I want to share some of my philosophies and experiences that have led me to where I am now, entering into an industry where I have found my passions reciprocated, and can use them as a tool for building a stable yet fun future for myself.
Something I like to live by is the whole cheesy concept of “follow your dreams”. The funny thing is that in my case, I was so absorbed in my dreams from the start of life that I was oblivious to the world around me and reality in general.
I went about my school career being happiest in the arts; subjects like maths and science were interesting, but less engrossing for me. This is where I found my passion for art, design and creativity. Other influencers were things like film, photography, fashion, cookery and especially architecture. Being surrounded by beauty made me want to create more of it, seeking out stimuli that fed my passion for design.
Despite the commentary from teachers telling me I wouldn’t get far in life, friends telling me art wasn’t a real subject, and the world screaming “artists make no money” at me, I persisted. As time went on, industries popped up all around me that offered more promise for those with a creative inclination, and this is what sparked the desire to study interaction design at the Cape Town Creative Academy and gave me my work ethic.
I was always at my happiest when I was creating something, or seeing beautifully created things, so finding a job where creativity is a daily task was the goal.
Believe me, finding my passion in life wasn’t just a fluke, or inherent talent, it was a learned behaviour. Just as there were those teachers and friends who said artists aspire to nothing and remain as such, there were also those teachers and friends who fed those creative tendencies and drove me to try new things.
Once life had started in the wonderful land known as tertiary education, ideas about work and finding an industry – where our skills could be used effectively – became more and more apparent.
A powerful paradigm that we learned was that design is a powerful tool, it’s always around you but you never realise it unless you look hard. The built human environment is completely and utterly a result of design, everything you see around you that is not naturally occurring was thought up and created by someone.
It’s the sudden realisations like that that made me find my passion in design; creativity and innovation are skills that everyone never knew they had, and never knew they needed. Of course, that is a horrendous generalisation, however it drove me to want to work… more and more, until graduation finally hit, and I was free to start working in the Cape Town design industry.
And I am happy to finally be here, the daydream prone boy has grown up and realised it is a literal dream come true! (I feel like a Sim that has achieved its lifetime wish)
Now I find myself doing a digital marketing internship here at Yellow Door; being able to work on a hotchpotch of things including web development, brand strategy, social media management and corporate identity. The work is all well and good, and I am taking in so much knowledge it almost hurts my brain. But the most amazing thing is that I get to learn from people who are just as creative as me – if not even more so – and their experience in the industry I wish to find my footing in makes me even more excited to be with them!
To end off, I’d like to share a far newer philosophy that was sparked by working with my passions and seeking employment in the design industry. If ever you want to do something good for yourself, work at what makes you happy, so you find yourself in a working environment that makes you even happier.