Skip to main content

Be yourself.

Dr. Seuss sure did hit the nail on the head with this one.

It’s odd to me that a quote from a child’s book could be so profound and inspiring at 29 years old nearing 30. My wife and I have a good friend that’s very creative. She hand-painted a few canvases for my son’s room, and one of them has that quote on it in bright orange and white text. He’s grown out of diapers now, but it hangs right above where we used to change him, and as I’d look up at it a few times a day it felt like a reminder for me just as much as it is for him.

It’s the kind of thing I want my kids to know and live, but we all should too!

I know I try to.

Whether that’s in my personality or the work I choose, I’m usually more worried about being good than I am being original. I’m always trying to stay “in my lane,” or true to myself.

But I wasn’t always this way.

I spent quite a bit of time throughout the course of my life trying to be something I thought I was supposed to be rather than just being myself. It wasn’t until I found my wife, graphic design, and Jesus that I started to realize who I was really supposed to be and how that should reflect through the work I do on a day to day basis.

The Genie told Aladdin the exact same thing when he was trying to impress Jasmine. BEE. YOURSELF. *Bee voice*

You might be seeing two recurring themes here: 1. Be yourself. 2. My kids are having a huge impact on the media I consume, but I’m getting off topic here.

Eventually, you’ll find who you are, and that might come with a certain style, aesthetic or a niche in the design world. Maybe that’s retro-style illustration, or maybe it’s hand-lettering.


Maybe when you were a kid, you liked to skateboard. Maybe try making deck graphics. Or maybe you liked graffiti and hip-hop. Try making work that’s inspired by that. Even if it’s just for fun, try and dig deep into the things you enjoy and create work that’s inspired by whatever that is!

Think back to your MySpace page or whenever you doodled in class when you should’ve been doing your classwork. Better yet, dig up that old journal out of the attic, and flip through those doodles and begin mining that old creativity for inspiration.

Know your roots. Whatever it is, find it, and work on it. Write about it. Research it. Work on it some more. It’ll help you become a specialist at something. I have a few passion projects that are based on things I like. One of them is a little clothing brand I made because I love my city, and I wanted to communicate that on graphic tees. But I wanted to do it in my own way, without all the drank and DJ screw references.

(I’ve since closed down the shop because I wasn’t able to give it the attention it needed to be great, meanwhile some fraudsters cleaned out my account when I got charged back for hundreds of dollars worth of purchases made with a stolen card. Thieves. SMH. I took the timing as a sign that it just wasn’t meant to be, but I’m one step closer to an idea that is. Anyways…)


The most important thing for a creative is being yourself. It’s good to be versatile, but in the long run, being a specialist makes it easier to gain recognition. Aside from the design aspect of being yourself, actually be yourself. This is the more important part, by far.

I have a lot more success on job interviews and with clients when I’m not all nervous and stuffy. I just be my goofy self. I don’t over do it with a tuxedo or a suit, ‘cause that’s not me. I don’t come in trying to sound like some genius, ‘cause that’s not me.

A big part of this is being insightful, though. When I meet a client at a Starbucks, I might wear some jeans and a shirt, or I might wear some chinos and a polo. It just depends on the person, but either way, I don’t do something that’s not me. This isn’t really about what you wear – don’t let me turn this into a post about fashion. It’s more about being true to yourself.

I try to make people smile, and I share my passion to help them by using my talent and experience, ‘cause that’s me. That goes hand in hand with believing in yourself.

This blog closes out the list of things that started this whole adventure of capturing my thoughts and sharing them through my blog. It’s a pretty cool story if you haven’t read it already, and I’ll continue to shout out and thank my new friend from New Zealand, Jacob. His blind enthusiasm and random question propelled me to want to share all this stuff with y’all. Moving forward, I think the blogs will get a bit more technically focused, but we’ll see. 🙂

Shout out to Tamarcus Brown from Unsplash for the photo.
Anthony Gorrity

About Anthony Gorrity

Leave a Reply