Build a Creative Career

If You Want to Win, Do This

A little over a decade ago I realized something that I needed to do if I was going to be serious about my career as a creative. At the time I took these steps out of necessity because I couldn’t afford to hire people for certain tasks, but as I got deeper into it and looked at where the job market and economy was headed, I doubled down and went all in. What am I talking about?


SKILL STACKING


When I got serious about making music, I was in school studying Marketing. I first started to apply what I was learning in my coursework to marketing my music. As I moved along, I needed to create album covers, banner ads, bulletins for MySpace, etc. so I started to learn the basics of design and got familiar with Photoshop and Illustrator.


As time progressed and YouTube became popular, I started to make beat making videos and learned editing software so that I could edit footage from in the studio or my shows. I couldn’t afford a decent camera, but as cell phone cameras got better, I learned how to compose interesting shots and experimented with every app that came out to learn how to take better pictures.


To get people interested in what I was doing, I learned how to become a better writer and create social media posts and copy that garnered interest in my work.


Why am I telling you all this?


I am telling you because the more skills you acquire, even if it is just the basic working knowledge that shows you have an understanding of the discipline and can speak the language will increase your chances of success exponentially.


If you look at the current job market, many companies are hiring hybrid creatives who can do multiple things. It doesn’t matter if you are looking to build a career from music or video or design, being able to relate to other creatives by speaking the language of different disciplines is an extremely valuable skill.


I’ve found to be successful you have to be flexible and willing to adapt. Chances are if you are reading this, deep down you just want to be creative and it may not necessarily matter how, as long as you are creating. I used to rap, I don’t anymore. Then, all I wanted to do was produce, I still do, but I also design, I am a photographer, and I am working on my first documentary. My creative career has progressed as I have grown as a person.


The interesting thing about learning these different skills, it has made me a far better creative than I would have ever been if I were to have stuck with music.


So, get out there and start stacking!