Centuries ago, back in the 70’s, I emerged from school at 18 with no idea what to do next, so I answered an ad for a “Junior Artist” because it had the word “Artist” in it and that seemed like a good word to be in a job description.

6 months later the “Senior Artist” quit and I became “The Art Department” and spent the next 5 years creating wine labels at what was called MIK Graphic Arts, then Precision Labels, now gone. Great job, lots of freebies, nice people, good pay.

One night the previously mentioned “Senior Artist” asked me to come and work with him… bad move. 18 months designing bank cheques, forms and lottery scratchies at CPE Australia. Great pay, awful job, no perks and scary security guards with big guns and unfriendly attitudes.

I quit and went to a typesetting & design company, which shall remain nameless, with an appalling boss who one day discovered that she’d spent all the money. “Oops” she said, giggling. Great job, nice people, no pay.

Three of us left and started our own company, LeType–LeArt (yes, I came up with the name – it was the 80’s remember, people wore Le-Specs), which went well until software was invented for Apple Macintosh computers that made our $250,000 worth of typesetting gear look silly. “Oops” we said, and I became Adelaide’s first “Freelance Designer with a Mac” in 1989.

Seriously, the sales guys at CPM&S, the first Mac dealership, looked at me as if I was an alien with no business in their store. They’d never heard of graphic designers and had absolutely no idea what possible use their product could be to one. Plus I guess I didn’t look like I could afford it – since my first Mac with 40mb hard drive, 8Mb RAM, 21″ 16-grayscale screen and 300dpi laserprinter cost $38,000!

Along the way I’ve moved in and out of various offices with other designers and advertising agencies. I worked as an in-house freelancer at Genesis Advertising for about 6 years, did a 4 year part-time stint with Pixie Press and recently left Myadd Advertising after 6 years as part time designer / developer / IMS (Issues Management Specialist – I gave myself the title and nobody argued) / Wizard.

All of which is a very long-winded way of saying that I have over 30 years experience and that my business has been running for over 20 years! 

And I’m still learning things all the time. I was right, “Artist” is indeed a good word to be a job description.