Personal Growth

Being Self Taught vs. Going to Art School


Welcome to our second AMA (Ask Me Anything) episode! These AMA episodes are a bit unique in that they focus on answering questions that I’ve received over the last couple of years via social media, email, and/or in-person from all of my wonderful followers. Now, the question came in from Instagram. The question is: ‍Is it possible to master all areas of art and design? If so, is it possible to do it in college? The short answer is… Yes & No. You can master all areas of design but by the time you would do so you’d be an old man/woman in tons of student loan debt and most likely burnt out from doing any aspect of design. Worst yet, by the time you mastered a new area of design, what you’ve previously mastered could be obsolete!

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Nuggets of Wisdom


Jack of All Trades, But Master of One

It's ok to know many different aspects of art and design but you don't have to be proficient in them all. Instead focus your energies on one or two areas but learn a bit about all of them. Employers aren't necessarily looking for a Master of All, they're looking for people familiar in a few high value skills such as: coding, animation, branding, etc. and master of at least one or two.


You Won't Master All Fields of Design in College

Not all colleges offer degrees let alone courses in every area of design. If you were to attempt to get degrees and take courses to do so, you'd end up burnt out and with a giant bill at the end of it. Even when it comes down to mastering one or two skills, college isn't even close to enough. It takes thousands of hours and many years to come close to mastering even one high value skill.


Become a Master of Corresponding Fields

It's more powerful to stack corresponding art and design fields on top of each other rather than try and take on the entire enchilada. For example, if your number one passion is branding design, then you might want to also focus on both lettering/typography and illustration. Better yet, if your passion is illustration, definitely work towards animation in tangent (trust me, its something I'm always trying to push myself to learn).

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Episode Show Notes

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Special Thanks to the Design Break Editor: Loreanne Varon

Podcast Music by: Royalty Free Rock via Pond5

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