My Dream Job

I am a graphic designer. Graphic design sucks as a profession. It requires that you be creative, but not too creative. There is a fine line between being creative enough to sell something, but not creative enough that people look at your stuff and think WTF? Graphic designers are essentially salesmen. I don’t like selling things.

The biggest problem with my haphazardly chosen profession is the client. People have no idea what they want or they have an idea in their head that they have no idea how to express. They end up by giving you a convoluted explanation that means nothing in the real world. Then, when you try to act out their ridiculous ideas with little to no direction, they say, “That isn’t it. I’ll know it when I see it.”

Graphic design is worse than other professions since people think they can do it themselves. Anyone who can make a lolcat thinks they know graphic design and people don’t want to pay you for it. Every year, I go into my accountant’s office at tax time with a big stack of invoices that were never paid. Apparently, I work for free.

People hover over your shoulder and tell you exactly what’s wrong, but rarely do they tell you how to make it right. It’s like taking your car in for service, standing in the service bay looking over the mechanic’s shoulder and telling him he’s doing it wrong while the poor mechanic restrains himself from saying, “If you know so much more than me as a professional with years of experience, why don’t you just do it yourself?” and hitting you over the head with a wrench. Then, when the mechanic has finished the job to your micromanaging satisfaction, you proceed to drive your car away without paying him.

Graphic design is one of the few professions where people want to see your work before they even bring you in for an interview. Some potential employers will actually sit you down at a computer during an interview and make you do a “test” where you design something for free. Imagine being a brain surgeon and having to perform a free brain surgery before you get a job at a hospital.

Basically, graphic design sucks and I don’t want to do it anymore. So, the question of what I do want to do for a living has very real ramifications for me since I am very much in the process of figuring out what I want to be when I grow up at this very moment.

I haven’t quite figured out what I want to be when I grow up, but I know what qualities that I want in a profession and those that I don’t. I would like my professional opinion to actually mean something. I don’t want people asking for my advice and then proceeding to tell me that I’m wrong, even though they haven’t a clue what they’re talking about. I’d like a job where people actually pay me for my services and think it’s worth the money; maybe they might even pay me up front. I don’t want a job where people think they can do it themselves. I’d like a job where my work speaks for itself.

I’d like to take all of the horrible things I’ve gone through in my life and turn them into positives; maybe even helping other people through my own experiences. I’d like to have enough money to live on and not live paycheck to paycheck anymore. While I still have no idea what job that would be, I’m going to keep looking until I find it.

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