I have had this dream since I first went to New York in 2009 that I wanted to live in a creative city, get really involved in the community, rent a small studio apartment, ditch my car, shop at the corner grocery store and take public transit everywhere. About six months ago I moved to Portland, Oregon and I feel like I am in am in the middle stages of exploring my dream… my dream of finding more focus, finding a path & ultimately finding success & fulfillment as a creative designer.
Let’s dive further into that, shall we?
Finding a focus:
It was April 2012 and my college graduation was creeping up on me. I was very excited but also nervous to not have the security blanket of school and student loans helping keep me warm at night anymore. While I was in college, I worked as a Waitress, a dog sitter and a Freelance Creative Designer to pay my bills. I knew once I graduated, I would have to find focus for my future, I would have to make a choice… to continue freelancing or to find a firm to work at? To stay in Phoenix or to leave?
Finding a path:
In traditional Jehn fashion, I decided to put off that decision making of what to do after graduation and travel for a month.
In August 2012, I began my solo journey – sans all electronic devices besides my phone – traveling around the western part of the country via train, bus, plane and the occasional automobile, visiting friends & taking a breather to hopefully find some clarity in those questions looming over me. I am the type of person who trusts her intuition over logic with questions like these. I try to go with what feels right for me…. “I listen to the wind of my soul” if you will. I went into my journey with an open mind, open eyes and the aim to stay present during my trip with the hope of finding answers, with the hope of finding a path.
The sixth stop of my journey, I took the AmTrak from Seattle, Washington to Portland, Oregon. (which I highly recommend. Make sure you sit on the West side of the train to see the beautiful scenery.) When I got off the train and walked outside of Union Station, the sun was warming me, the activity of everyone around was exciting me, the glistening of the sun on the trees was beautiful, all of the downtown buildings around me made me feel at home… I knew I had to move here. I knew something bigger than I knew was here for me. Keeping in line with staying present, I did not mention that moment I had at Union Station to anyone until I got home two weeks later and had time to reflect on it. A week after I got home I was already deciding what to sell and what to keep to fit in my car to move up here. I followed a path I felt good about to Portland four months later & have no intention of leaving.
My next step is to find a solid career path which will come with answering the question of pursuing my career as a freelance designer or joining a firm & to find fulfillment & success within my decision. I am giving it a year to make a name for myself here as a freelancer & seeing where I land… In order to gauge how I am doing, I need to explore the depths of my freelance career, find my niche, find where I excel in this community and figure out how to achieve the success I want. Part of finding that success will be through this blog & I hope you join me on my journey.
What you will find in future posts on the blog is me opening my eyes to various topics in & around my creative field + life. (IE: Technology, Design, Freelance Life, Life in general etc.) that I find interesting, want to know more about or want to challenge myself with and ultimately want to share. I will spend a certain amount of time diving deep into each idea and I will write about what I what I learn, how I feel and where I am at with finding my next path…
What have you done to follow your dreams, to find your path?