Stop Hesitating

If you’ve been following my blog since I started, or if you’ve lurked through everything I’ve uploaded (I know you’re there, lurkers!) then this piece might ring a bell. When I did my first Thing A Day, the second thing on the second day was a piece called Stop Hesitating. This time, I decided to redesign the piece completely and approach the phrase with a few new styles and techniques I’ve picked up since that time.

Stop Hesitating

It was interesting to revisit an idea, even if it was to completely redesign it. I considered simply re-executing the same design, and trying to tweak it in a few places, but I thought it would be more exciting to see what new ideas I could come up with. I went through a few different iterations before settling on this, and though the layout is similar to the original, the style and overall presentation are very different.

One of the reasons I decided to revisit this piece was because I liked the message. It stands as a little reminder that sometimes it’s all too easy to hesitate and be apprehensive before doing something, and more often than not, once you actually start doing whatever it is that you’re thinking about, it’s not nearly as bad as you had originally thought. That being said, I had a good time redesigning an old piece, so I may consider giving some of my other early pieces a bit of a rehash to see what good can come of them.

Do Your Best

Everyone likes to do their best, even if it’s hard. Even if you do it and then you get nowhere, at least at the end of it you know that you did your best. After it’s finished, you can tell yourself that even if you had tried, you couldn’t have done any better, because what you did was your best. Who can feel bad about that?

Do Your Best

Sometimes your best isn’t very good. Or maybe it’s good, but it’s not quite good enough. In those times, it can be hard not to give up, too, but if you keep doing your best, eventually your best stops being bad, or it becomes good enough. It sounds simple enough, doesn’t it? Keep doing your best until your best becomes good enough. In fact, the structure of it is pretty simple, even if the act might not be. The act of doing something might be the most gruelling and difficult thing you can imagine, but if you stick to the rights structure, it tends to end up with your best being good enough. So what is the structure? It’s turning up and doing it all the time. It doesn’t matter too much when or where, but if you do your best all the time, then it’s pretty certain that it will work.

So what does it mean to do your best? Well, sometimes, it’s not just plugging away at something as furiously as possible. Doing your best doesn’t always mean putting in as much effort as you can. To do your best sometimes means to figure out a way to do something more easily or more efficiently. Sometimes it means spending a lot of extra time now in order to learn how to save a little time consistently in the future, which adds up to make a saving. But more often than not, doing your best starts with doing.

Are you doing it?

It’s Never Too Late to Start

It’s been an interesting week for me. Coming back home from visiting family in another country was going to be fine, but unfortunately the trip back was interrupted by some surprise friends in the form of kidney stones and a cold. In addition to that, my wife suddenly had a new job start, all of which meant that I didn’t get round to doing a piece for this Monday’s blog post. So I could have though it no big deal, and just put it off until next week, but I’ve had a piece that I wanted to do for a while now on the back burner that fit what was going on quite well.

It's Never Too Late to Start

It’s never too late to start. Well, for me, I started pretty late. Past the deadline, in fact. But that doesn’t mean that it didn’t get done. Sometimes it’s too easy to fall into an all-or-nothing mindset where we think that if we slip up or miss something once then there’s no point carrying on. This can often lead to us abandoning the things we had previously told ourselves we would do, whether it be working hard, exercising, or sticking to resolutions. How many people make resolutions each year only to end up not sticking with them? Probably most. And how many of those failed attempts begin to fail right before we give up entirely? I’d say probably most again.

So this piece is me saying that even if I’m late I’m going to keep doing it. I won’t give up just because I hit a bump in the road. Sometimes starting is all you need to do to be able to keep going and get something done. And it’s never too late to start.

Never give up & never surrender

Here’s a little piece I did just recently. Something motivational which should help to look at any time it seems like it would be easier to stop trying with something. When it comes to finding inspiration, it can be a problem for many people, so this is a nice little mantra. Never give up! Never surrender!

Never give up & never surrender

Surrender to what, though? It’s not exactly a battle, is it? Well, maybe it is, in a way. A battle between the person who wants to get things done and the temptation to give up. One thing that you can say for certain about successful people is that they would say “No” to the question “Did you ever surrender to your doubts?” It can seem daunting when you’re trying your hardest and feeling like you’re getting nowhere. They say “Rome wasn’t built in a day”, which is a neat little cliché. The reason things become clichés, however, is because they’re true. If it weren’t something that resonated with a lot of people, it wouldn’t get said again and again until it was over used. I, on the other hand, am not building Rome, so what am I building? At the moment, it s a portfolio. But it’s also consistency. I’m holding myself to the promise of weekly updates, and though they may end up a few hours late some weeks, I’m not going to let myself fail. I will never give up, and never surrender, even if it seems like it would be easy to do so. You are also not building Rome, unless you are, in which case, well done. But if you’re not, what are you building? What won’t you give up on?

The best time is now

Still on catch-up mode here, so this one was done a while ago, but it’s not too old. This one wasn’t a piece for a client, just one that I decided to do on my own steam, just like in the good old days of Thing a Day.

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After a few variations, I settled on going for the old words-within-words style. I did something similar for Tomorrow is a Dream, but this one is a little different. I think that when you first see it you read the word “now”, of course, because it’s so big. Then comes the rest of the sentence, which is finished by the word “now” again. So in a way, it reads “Now. The best time is now.” It has more impact and helps the message, I think.

This piece also has an element that I’ve wanted to try out for a while in it. Imagine that the words “the best time is” simply make everything behind them turn the opposite colour, creating what looks almost like a checker board pattern. The challenge with it is that if you were to simply follow along the guidelines in the picture below, you wouldn’t execute the design successfully.

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The problem arises when you consider following along the pencil lines with a fineliner. In fact, when you look at a pencil outline like this one, you only see the line. But when you look at the finished piece, you don’t so much see the line as you see what is contained or excluded by the line. Because of this, you need to think about the thickness of the stroke that is created when you draw along a line. In fact, it’s drawing ON the line that is the mistake. To allow the negative space, or the white spaces, be the same proportion as their black counterparts, you must always make sure to draw around the surrounding edge, and never on the line itself, unless you want the white parts to become too small. Take a look at the picture from a silly angle to see what I mean:

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I’m working on a big logo design project at the moment, but luckily I’m having the time to post bits and pieces here and there to try to catch up with myself, but it might take a little longer to get a post done about this logo, though when it arrives, there will be a lot to talk about, as it’s my most detailed piece yet, by far.

Thing a Day (Day 7)

It’s here. Day 7. I feel like I should have some grand words to write. Some great insight. Instead, I’m sitting here with orange peel on my lap. The good news is that I fixed the computer, so everything should be tip top from now on! The other good news is that I designed AND inked a large piece today, which is more than I had planned, but I thought that finishing the final day with a pencil sketch would be a let down. And the best news is that it’s nearly bed time! I stayed up far too late getting this finished.

Well, anyway, let’s take a look at it.

Fortune favours the bold.

Fortune favours the bold! Or at least, let’s hope it does. And yes, it’s the British spelling of “favour”, what can I say. As for what happened with this piece, I can say that it’s an idea that I had yesterday, and everything was going smoothly until the word “the” became unstuck in time and space and refused to settle back into normality, therefore making it impossible to fit into the design. Fortunately, I had the bright idea of placing it within a ribbon. As you can see, the dots around the edge are to keep it in. Let’s just hope it doesn’t slip out of the end.

Thing a Day. What can I say? It was pretty tough to keep up to my own standards, and it certainly used up vast chunks of time, but I would certainly say that it was worth it. Thing a Day will stop now, and I will upload on a less (but still) frequent basis. It will also give me more time to explore things that are more experimental.

Lastly, I can say that Thing a Day will be back! Sometime in the near future, there will be more things, and more days, and they will go hand in hand.

Thing a Day (Day 1)

Thing a Day (Day 2)

Thing a Day (Day 3)

Thing a Day (Day 4)

Thing a Day (Day 5)

Thing a Day (Day 6)