Logic Of The Day: 23.10.2018.

You May Have To Work for free.
How did I learn design? I went to our Design Director and asked him if I could design my client’s sites. I said don’t show them to the client — I just want feedback on real projects with real constraints so I can get better. And I did it for free.


For 9 months I did this. I designed probably 50 campaigns. They sucked for a long time. But each one got slightly better.

Eventually they started trickling over to clients as the “B option” in case they didn’t like the good one. Eventually they started going with the B option sometimes. Eventually I ended up having a weird split role with 2 bosses, doing half client services and half design work — always from 6–9am or after work, and always for free.

When you’re young, reps matter more than money. Your portfolio matters more than money. Opportunities to learn matter more than money.

If you can command the kind of prices you want and can get all the work you want, great. If you suck and really want to learn, don’t wait for some golden opportunity to get paid to learn. Start learning now — on real projects with real constraints. The money will come.

~ Sean Johnson (13 ways to turn your career into an f-ing rocket ship)
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