My Story as a Self Taught Graphic/Web Designer

how, why, and more on my journey as a graphic designer.

I am self taught in graphic and web design with about 10 years of experience. When I first started to seriously pursue it, it was to help my husband with his various band needs and our hometown church. But it was obvious before then that I loved designing…

My dad was always geeky with his many computers and that influenced me to show interest as well. I was inspired with his drawings he created in the original paint program and the way he networked computers together for gaming. Computers were new to the family home and I was raised with accessible computers to experiment on.

My mother was always very crafty since she was a preschool teacher. She had the most amazing bulletin boards and art projects. I remember my science projects were to a level of perfection that never even existed. This showed me how to have an eye for making things look good.

AIM was probably my first hands-on introduction to graphic design. I fell in love with making my AIM profile flawless (Yes, I was that girl.). This then led to a Tripod, Angelfire, and Geocity website that had them little doll clipart jpgs in their various categories based on their appearances. Most of you probably don’t know the dolls I am talking about but they were awesome! lol

I followed up those amazingly purposeful websites, with one for my pet turtle. Yes, I am a dork. I know.

Fast forward some and I am a teenage wife and stay at home mother. I had a desire to help my husband provide financially but it made more sense to stay home with our firstborn. My husband was trying to start a band and I volunteered to do anything, that involved media, marketing, and even recording their very first music video. (Which I still have and could seriously use it for blackmail.) That experience made me good enough to work (getting paid!) for our church doing their marketing, media, and website from home.

My journey led me to grow through trial and error. I watched online tutorials and experimented daily. I loved it. I actually got good. I learned Photoshop inside and out. I studied and memorized HTML & CSS. And I enjoyed it. I really loved the challenge of designing and coding a website from start to finish.

I then started freelance work and designed for many that heard about me by word of mouth. My husband’s career began to take off which led to many musician friends in need of album art, websites, posters, branding, and more. I was becoming pretty busy and it was often taking me away from my family more than I had set out to do. Once we decided to homeschool I knew I needed to cut back for awhile. Luckily, I have still continued to design while homeschooling, just not nearly as much as I was.

I love designing and I am pretty sure I will always find an outlet for that creativity. I encourage anyone interested in learning something to constantly challenge yourself. If you are dedicated then it could become your profession. I am thankful for the opportunity to do something I love, from home as a job.

I taught myself by just trying over and over. Constantly improving, project after project

Fun Stuff! Share your work or story in the comment section!

xoxo

April Walker

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