Learning a new trick or two…

"I am always doing that which I cannot do,
in order that I may learn how to do it."
Pablo Picasso


Being successful in the graphic design business requires an awareness of new trends and the ability to use the newest tools to be more creative and efficient.

And so periodically, you have to take stock and evaluate your skills and work product. Things to consider: is my work starting to look dated? Am I using current software? And are my skills compatible with current trends?

We’ve seen some truly amazing and fundamental changes in the graphic design world over the past 10-20 years. It’s a fast pace and definitely a challenge to keep up. But it’s necessary and dare I say, even fun.

There are all sorts of ways to learn in this business. Continuing education can take place in a traditional classroom or online. Websites like or the many design blogs in cyberspace can really help a designer stay current. A big plus for online learning is that it can fit any schedule.

Meetup groups ( are another great way to learn about new tools and improve our skills. These group meetings are held all over the country and cover all sorts of topics. For example, a short time ago, I attended a meetup about Wordpress. I have had a positive experience so far and have found that there’s a lot that can be learned in this environment where people share their knowledge and experiences.

Recently, I’ve started to get a handle on subjects like Social Media and CMS (content management system) websites. When my clients ask about whether they should have a Facebook page or a Twitter account, it is important that I can knowledgeably discuss the specific merits and implementation. One way to learn is to do. So I joined Twitter with the idea of exploring its possibilities. I made a Facebook page for Pixel-Gym with the same idea in mind. While there is a certain “fun” factor to Facebook and Twitter, my accounts provide an alternative method of communicating with my clients as well as a friendly introduction to new clients. And new clients can also check me out at Linkedin.

Where does this lead? Who knows for sure but at least I won’t say “huh” when someone says “beetweet” (a “hot” tweet) or “mistweet” (a tweet one later regrets).

I am on a journey. For me, graphic design is an evolving process. That means taking the time to learn about new technology and figuring out ways to use it effectively so that my clients always get my best.

Let me know what you are doing to keep up. Post a comment below.

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