Why I am here?
My Journey is not very different from any other first generation American. I was born in Massachusetts but moved to the Dominican Republic until I was in the second grade. When I moved back I had to do the second grade over again because I didn't know enough english to be in the regular classes. I was in an english as a second language (or ESL) course until the 4th grade. Fast forward to 2007 when I graduated High school and I knew there was no way for me to pay for college so I enlisted in the US Air Force. For 5 years I was an F-15 mechanic and went to school part time. When I got out of the service in 2012, I just bounced around different jobs until I got my B.A in Studio art from the University of West Florida in 2016. After I graduated, I went straight into the MFA program at Full Sail University in Media Design.
Why did I get the MFA in Media Design? Because it wasn't until my second to last semester, where I realized that I knew how to draw and paint but not how to be an artist. I had not been taught how to run my business or how to get into a gallery to sell my work. I spoke about that to my mentor at the school and he stated that all art schools have that pitfall. So, I used my art skills to go into design. It is kind of similar but there is a huge difference. Art is done for yourself and design solves a problem for someone else. Some design is art (I.E Stefan Kunz or Gemma O'Brien) but for the most part it is used to solve problems.
I graduated with my MFA in Media Design in 2017 and then I received a new hurdle, employment. I now have two fancy pieces of paper (which I did not go into debt to get) but now I have to find a job. Everywhere I looked, places wanted 3 years of experience. I am a family man so I couldn't just up and move to L.A or New York, so I continued to keep my skills fresh and look around my local area or remote. The only place that would take me was an online internship for a start-up. I became the lead graphic designer and lead the design team to create a brand identity for this non-profit. After the internship was done, I finally found a job.
At this job I ended up doing very little design work but a lot of digital marketing. I learned about content marketing and how to leverage attention to draw in customers. Within a few weeks, I started a YouTube show and started engaging on our social media platforms. After a month web traffic went up 20% and I was thrilled. Although I was successful at marketing I got forced into a more sales oriented position and could not perform.
I got FIRED! I saw it coming. For weeks I had a gut feeling I was going to get fired. I can't cold call, I am not forceful, and I won't sell things I don't think are good. So, I started a business. I know what I am good at and I know I am effective. I am great at using art and design to grab attention and get the right customers. You can come to me with a problem and I know how to craft a solution. I truly want my client to succeed and I want others to do well. I don't want to sell stuff but I want to sell an experience. Anyone can go to 99designs and get a logo made, but will that translate to your customer? I tailor each logo specifically to your target customer and back up the decisions made through research. I use my art skills to create something that feels handcrafted and personal but still meets your need as a business owner.
I am not the cheapest designer but I am also not the most expensive. I bring big ideas to small businesses that don't have time to look into the difference between ligatures and KPI. You want to focus on what you do best and let someone else focus on filing the gaps where you need help. Why don't you sign up and get a free brand diagnosis and see where you can be more effective. It will only cost you your time.