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Today’s guest is Steve Wolf. Thanks for your time and tell us more about yourself?
I am a designer & Illustrator focusing on branding and logo design. I was born and raised in a small town in Nebraska and have lived in Texas now for roughly six years. I have a passion for creating things, and I am always looking for new ways to communicate my design work. Some of my interests include cars, travel, history and drinking large amounts of coffee.
When did you decide to take designers path?
I decided to become a designer during college. The more I learned about design and the opportunities it presented; I started to feel that design was the path I needed to follow.
How did you get into design?
Before I went to college, I thought I wanted to major in Industrial Design. I attended workshops on design and had a dream to design cars. During college, a design professor invited me to attend a graphic design meeting, and I instantly fell in love with the world of graphic design. I have always loved to draw and create art, and graphic design encouraged both of those passions. I was able to use my fine art background and translate my skills into design and lettering, and the rest is history!
Why design? Not development, blogging or marketing?
I am a visual person, and design allows me to unleash all of my creative ideas in a more expressive way than blogging and marketing. My work can live on a variety of different platforms such as packaging, signage, apparel, print, and web just to name a few. These outlets let me do different things in my work which keeps the work fresh and exciting.
What is your biggest failure you learned the most from?
One of my very first jobs I ever received as a freelance opportunity was designed and finished without a signed contract from the client. I didn’t get a payment from them and never heard from them again once I sent them the files. This forced me to learn more about business and the correct way to run a business.
I learned that running your own design business requires knowledge in much more than design. Things such as time management, proper contract structure, and taxes were just a few areas I know I needed to start learning more of. Today, I am confident in both the design and business aspects of my own business because of this event.
How do you manage your time?
My wife created a system to help manage and organize all of my client work and emails to make working as easy as possible. This includes coming up with questions I need to ask my clients, filing paperwork, and making sure I am communicating with my clients. I make sure to track my hours which helps me see how long I am spending on each project.
Where are you currently based and what’s next? It’s a huge trend to be a digital nomad; maybe you will try it too?
I am currently based in Austin, TX and have been here for two years. I love the idea of being a digital nomad and would love to try this out someday. If you have a steady stream of work coming in and have enough money saved, I think anyone can do it and run their business at the same time.
What was your latest personal project?
I completed a Skillshare class about designing t-shirts, and it is available now. The class guides you through step by step from sketch to finished design.
5 Online tools you can’t live without?
Instagram – It has been a great way to promote more of my work and build an online presence.
Pinterest – One of my favorite places to look for design inspiration.
Dribbble – There is a great community of designers here that you can connect with, and it is also a great place to see new and exciting work.
Coolors – A great place for color inspiration. When I want to use a new color scheme for a project, I come here often to get inspired and see what might work.
Facebook – It’s very easy to stay on here for hours every day. It is still one of the leading platforms I communicate with people.