Design saved my life. Again.

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On April 12th, I was one of those unlucky souls.

I woke up feeling pretty rough, and initially put what came next during those 24 hours as being due to sun stroke (despite it being 19 degrees that day in London) - I was boiling hot, had a pounding headache, and was wheezing like a 90-year-old smoker.

I had contracted Covid-19. 

The next two weeks were horrendous. I've never really experienced anything like it before (I'd not been to a GP in twenty years, now I was having consultations with them almost every second day). At the worst point paramedics were called, I was put on antibiotics for pneumonia, and was bed-bound for days on end. Breathing was difficult.

Considering my scenario, I feel fortunate that I was furloughed very early on in the crisis rearing its head, and even more fortunate that I had my good old iMac at home.

Because as ill as I got, the good spells were spent sat creating and building personal projects in Photoshop, InDesign and Squarespace.

However poorly I felt, just adding image blocks or managing masters or producing paths felt like a reminder that I WOULD get through this. That simply hitting Export as PDF or Save for Web was psychological evidence that I would come out of the other side of this nightmare.

Ultimately, I am one of the lucky ones who has. With a seriously renewed and bolstered love for the job I do - from managing Repro to creative artwork to digital stuffs, design proved to be the constant balancer, the light in the darkness.

The good spells were spent sat creating and building personal projects in Photoshop, InDesign and Squarespace.

Aged 16, I had left school with no idea what or who I wanted to be. I was chucked on Labour's "New Deal Scheme" and thrown into a junior Graphic Design job.

I have maintained, ever since those days, that design saved my life. I was idealess and lost before I started at Letraset as that spotty shy youth. Within 6 months, I was building entire magazines and books for clients in Quark, Photoshop and Freehand.

I was a Macolyte. A fully fledged Mac convert. I'd get home at midnight, they'd have to force me out of the building because the cleaners would need to get in...

27 years on, and that passion, that love, still burns as bright.

Creative Cloud may have replaced 3.5, Mojave may have replaced OS 7.6, but it is STILL the pure joy and love for production that drives everything.

And 27 years on, design saved my life again.

P.S: the header image represents the best Amazon purchase made during lockdown.


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