Every past attempt at creating my personal brand started with imagery and surface beauty. I realize that those aren’t what makes a good brand. Good brands start with the values. To be fair though, understanding your own values can be a difficult, personal, and sometimes an exhausting exercise.
I started mucking around with design in the summer of 2006, when I got an old hand-me-down copy of photoshop and illustrator (cs 7.1 I think it was). I started mucking around with websites around 2010, and mucked around with bootstrap and WordPress so much that I was able to land my first job as a contractor at Science-inc through my small body of work.
Throughout that time, I’ve never created a personal brand that I’ve felt proud of, although it isn’t for the lack of effort. But I feel like all of my usual efforts have gotten me nowhere. The usual cycle is that I see someone else’s website or ephemera, and I think, “Wow, I should have something cool like that!”. Immediately I crack open the latest design software I’m using and get to work, designing layouts, pairing fonts. After a few hours, I tucker out and never touch the work I’ve done.
This time around, I’ll be trying a different approach. I’m going to avoid getting into the visuals and instead concentrate on understanding the inner brand. Since that brand is myself (a person), I will have to dive deep into the value system that would be accurate and represent me in a way I’d be comfortable with presenting to the public domain.
Where can I go to understand my own values.
I went two places to understand my the values of my personal brand: my brain and my classmates.
My brain has a version of myself that no one else sees. How I perceive of myself could be s a warped landscape which may or may not be different from the outside perceptions of the outside world. So the first thing I did was create some values that I think I hold.
Next, I went out to a few classmates, and asked what it was like to work with me. I asked classmates because they are people who have worked with me and interacted with me consistently for the past two years within a very work-like context. I wrote down some words used to describe me.
Next, I compared the two sets. The sets generated from my mind and ones taken from the outside. Were there any outliers? Were there surprises?
I decided not to just go with the words that appeared in the union. I took some outside that felt real.
@TODO Add the graphic of values.