Nikki Villigomez has learned a lot over 16 years as a graphic design professional. In this talk, Nikki will proudly share her failures and triumphs as she takes the audience on a 10-step journey of the lessons she has learned along the way. Nikki has been an in-house designer, a freelancer, a stay at home mom, and an educator. Come listen to Nikki share real-life lessons that she wishes someone had told her when she was an emerging designer! (description from the AIGA Baltimore website)
Today I ventured outside of my comfort zone and decided to participate in one of AIGA Baltimore's Design Week events. The event was held at Gilah Press + Design Studios in Hampden from 9am - 11am.
I ordered my ticket online in advance, got up early, scheduled my uber, out the door and ready to go! Side note: you can always tell how excited I am by how I prepare for events.
Now... I discussed in another post just how nerve wrecking networking can be. So, I find a seat in the second row of chairs and spark up a conversation with another attendee. She tells me she attended one of the other design week events; we start talking about our jobs and local design communities. I think to myself, "Great! This networking thing isn't that bad. I can totally do this." Literally 20 seconds later, a gentleman sits down on the other side of her, interrupts our conversation, and completely takes over the convo. At this point I feel it's just better to act like I'm playing on my phone. LOL
Brandi - 0 | Awkward networking - 1
The program starts and we're instructed to each say our name, job, favorite type and/or character.
"Hi my name is Brandi Mebane. I'm a blankity blank at such-in-such as well as a freelance designer. My favorite type family is Gotham. And I don't have a favorite character." Not too bad, right? Nothing anyone would remember, but also nothing that sounds too silly. I'm fine with that for now.
Next up Nikki. I can can sense a little awkwardness from her which I can completely embrace. It was very interesting to hear a bit more about Nikki Villigomez, her work and experiences. Nikki goes on to list her "10 things I've learned by working hard and being ballsy".
- Set goals. (Long term and short term)
- You can fail but don't forget.
- If you can't find what you're looking for, do it yourself.
- Trust yourself before you can trust anyone else.
- Find out who you are and never let go.
- Work on projects you're passionate about.
- Protect yourself.
- Don't be afraid of the unknown.
I've heard each and every one of these "things" on the list! But amazingly, they've never come together in this way, nor have they ever been this reassuring or insightful. I was so happy to walk away knowing...
- I'm on the right track.
- I'm not the only person that experiences MAJOR fails.
- You can TOTALLY be a mom of two and still follow your dreams.
- Creatives are nomads and I no longer have to feel awful about it.
- Goals may take years and several failed attempts to achieve. (And like Nikki said, "I might reach that goal; I might not. It's ok.")
Did she just say "... I might not [reach my goals]. It's ok."? Oh my goodness. I've been going about this ALL THE WRONG WAY! She stood so firm and seemed so unbothered by the idea of not reaching a goal! Then it dawned on me; people living by this creed are usually the most successful. They set goals, try new things, take risks, fail, set new goals (or modify the old ones), get off track, get back on track. And boom, 2 months (or 2 years) later the goal is achieved. Lesson learned Nikki. Thank you for the inspiration, simple, short-and-sweet guidance. Your journey looks and sounds amazing and I wish you nothing but the best.
A few pics I snapped from the event.