Half a lifetime ago, I was hurtling towards the end of my first degree, a Bachelor of Music at Monash University. Over the course of the degree I had become disenchanted with the study of music and had lost the excitement and joy of playing live. I began to feel more and more pressure to perform in a certain style or to play particular tunes in order to obtain a decent grade instead of performing simply for the love of it. I was not sure what to do next.

So I added another year of study to get my honours, focussing more on composition rather than performing. I had high hopes of writing copious amounts of music and hoped to see new possibilities open up for me. At the end of the additional year, I was still not sure what to do next.

So, as like many in my situation, I went into education. I enrolled into a Diploma of Education for Secondary School, another year of study. I was 21 at the time and during my teaching rounds I was charged with educating students a mere 3-4 years younger than me, most were significantly taller than me also. It was not a good fit at the time. Again, not sure what to do next.

I had picked up a copy of Beat Magazine, mindlessly flicking through the pages looking at various upcoming gigs, when I came across an ad for Shillington College, a school for Graphic Design. I thought this could be something.

As well as music, I had always been into visual art growing up as well. Most days after school I could be found in front of the tv watching the afternoon cartoons – Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Inspector Gadget, Astroboy, Transformers, the list goes on. I would make recordings of the shows, pause the tape and draw the scenes on countless reams of old computer paper. Pretty much every single day. Over the years my school exercise books would be littered with doodles and drawings in the margins, right from primary school through to uni. I had studied Graphic Communication in high school but had never taken it further. Maybe it was time to head back down that road.

I enrolled in the Shillington course and three months later I had my Certificate IV in Computer Graphic Design.

And that’s how I became a graphic designer.