Getting Schooled

by Sarah PhippsJune 8, 2015

It's finally June! That means school is out and the weather turns hot and humid within a matter of minutes. Kids can take a break from classes and turn off their brains for a few short weeks. How I miss those days when summer break was all I ever wanted after the last holiday break. Sadly those days are gone and I now find myself in the classroom more than ever before.

Freelancing means much more than working your own hours, in any location you'd like, and wearing your bath robe till noon while you work. It also means constantly learning. Non-stop learning. As much as you can get, any chance you get, you must always find new things to learn. With a more flexible schedule, I finally have a chance to attend all those meet-ups, learning lunches, seminars, visiting experts, and other events that will enrich my career.

Just this morning my local AIGA chapter posted an event for beginning freelancing. Of course I'm going to go! Even though I've been doing this for a while now I have still so many things I could learn from people who have been at it longer. Freelancing has made me more humble. The creative community is pretty tight and a bad reputation can get around quickly. It's better to be humble among your peers than a pompous ass that no one wants to work with or help out. I know I don't know everything and I could always use more advice. It's not so much a step backwards but a chance to see another perspective. An opportunity to see how others have approached the same thing I have and what their successes and failures were.

So even after twelve years of grade school and a total of seven years of college, I'm running back into a classroom mentality. Willingly. In high school I never wanted to go back to any type of school environment. Then college happened... twice. I was in my late 20's when I was done will all the schooling I could afford and realized I knew nothing. Experience is a great teacher too but it isn't always enough. Networking events and seminars given by others in the field are now my new classrooms. And I'm glad to get back to it.