Andy J. Miller’s blog has been a great source of ideas, thoughts, and philosophies on creativity, being an illustrator, and what it all means:
5 Reasons You Have to be Creating Your Own Content
The definition of content we are looking for:
the substance or material dealt with in a speech, literary work, etc., as distinct from its form or style
Bring your style to the table, but add your own substance, your own story, ideas, and material. Create projects for yourself with all your own material. Create content: zines, info-graphics, daily projects, posters, comics, etc.
Creating your content no longer seems like an option to me as an illustrator and designer, and here’s why I really believe that:
1. Traditional Marketing and Advertising is dead!
Look at an extremely successful designer or illustrator and you will see a strong body of content.
We all know advertising is actually SPAM! We want value, we don’t want to look at something someone paid a price for us to see, we want to see good stuff that we choose to see. We choose to see great content, and we form great bonds with people and organizations that make great content. Forget about mailer campaigns, make something worth sharing!
2. The Best Projects Require More Than Your Hands!
The best clients I have ever had were asking me to add more than drawing. It can be a little scary, but these opportunities have all been on the back of content I have made. When you create content you show the value you can add with your head, not just your hands!
These projects are the best paying and most fun, but the only way they will trust you with this type of work, is if you prove you can do it with your own content.
3. Add Value To Your Community
If you are part of community of any kind, creating content is the most valuable part of your conversation. Instead of taking and critiquing the community, you are making it. This gives you authority in the conversation and appreciation. Be lavish in your giving of content, you probably owe your community a lot.
4. Learn About Yourself
When you start to make content you will notice what you enjoy, what is best received and where you feel most comfortable. When you start adding material to your style, your style develops and starts to follow your material. When you start looking inward for content you start to get to know yourself better, which develops your craft.
5. If You Don’t Want to Make Your Own Content Maybe You Need to Do Something Else…
At the end of the day, if creating content sounds like a chore, or you’ve tried and it is a chore, I can see only two conclusions: one you haven’t found the type of content you love to make or worse… you need to find something else to do with your life. If you don’t love this creative field you will not make it, and if you hate creating content you probably don’t love this field, i.e. time to take the career aptitude tests all over again!
Has creating your own content been valuable to you?
Content! Makes me think of @givingcity
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