Work for Love? // Some thoughts

Friday, February 15, 2019

Well it's certainly the week of love isn't it? And on that note I wanted to talk about a quote I see about a lot on social media.

A lot of people throw around this quote “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life” when that job equals something you are passionate about or, a lot of the time, is a job within the creative industries. As someone who had dreamed from the age of 13 and has been working/interning as a graphic designer for 2 years, I have some thoughts on this.

Before we jump in, I thought it’s better to give context and actually explain what I do in my current role at SevenC3. So recently, my main responsibilities include creating illustrated posters and listicles and animated stories/in-feed posts for Vitality (and their Vitality at Work counterpart), as well as helping on the magazine and creating the digital and social posts for WW. Other than these, I help out on minor things for our other clients, occasionally get involved in other editorial design, pitches and in-house marketing.

When people speak about working in a job you love, they expect that it is your ideal work every single day. But the reality is, that it won’t happen. Once you’re in and have found your *sweet spot* in terms of either clients, style of work, etc, you will obviously be given more work of this type but the likelihood if you work in an agency is that you’re going to have to pick up other types of work as well.

My favourite days are the ones where I get to sit, with my iPad, and draw. No doubt about it. But these days aren’t the norm! My illustrated work is usually only once a month for Vitality at Work. I tend to spend a total of 3-4 days on developing it from scamp to final design. And that can include hiccups too. Client want amends, concepts can change and other things may get thrown into the mix. In the moment yes, it annoys me and can piss me off. But in the bigger picture, does that mean how much ‘love’ I have for my role or this type of work changes? Honestly? No, not really.

The reason being, for me anyway, is that even tho there may be things in a workplace that I don’t enjoy or can be annoying to do or get involved in. I still feel privileged that I get to be there in the first place. Cracking into the design industry is hard in the first place, which is why I moved to London for this job. Out of both my uni and college classes (which totals maybe 60-70ish folk), I think there is only just about a dozen or so still pursuing design. And if I then throw in the numbers of people I knew in Secondary and Primary school, who had an incredible talent for art and design, the number of those who still pursue it is an even smaller percentage.

And I get this might seem like I’m saying all this with blind faith. That I obviously live in a hippy-dippy world where everything is good and shiny. But in order for me to continue doing my best work, the best way I can do that and keep the motivation and speak alive to do that, is to be an optimist about the work I do.

I cannot be that person who sulks around at work. I cannot be the type of person who moans that the weekend is over or lives for 4:30pm on a Friday afternoon. I just can’t.

For me the quote isn’t so much “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life”, but it is much more “Follow your passion and you'll find a way to be fulfilled”. Because every job involves hardwork. Even one you love.

The truth for me then, is that yes I do work and I love the industry I’m in. I relish in the fact that I get to spend my days at work creating graphics, animations, illustrations and ideas. And yes even if I get stressed or pissed off or fed up some days, they will never take away from the enjoyment I get from the other things because I love that to spend my days doing what I enjoy.

Comment below or tweet me your thoughts on this quote! I'd love to hear your views.

Images sourced from Lettering by myself. 

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