sk-8-bored- Four wheels aligned under a flat piece of wood.
This was not my first attempt at a skateboard but my first attempt to take it more serious than a radius of a few feet. My friends in Northern Cali skate all the time and they even have a ramp in the backyard covered by a roof so it is available during rainy days alongside the beach. They encouraged me to accept their lessons so I could skate with them. After days of practice I attempted the ramp. I was doing pretty good then I started creating an analogy out of it and forgot to concentrate on the leaning part. After the board slipped from under me, I thought “I’m not hurt and I think I get it but I need to get some other things done”. As soon I finished that thought I made myself get back on the board and continue practicing. Even though I wasn’t afraid to get back on I didn’t want to develop a scare for my next time. Back on the board I couldn’t help but to continue thinking about my analogy and the part of me falling just added to it. I knew something now that I didn’t know before the fall and I had to continue with my new experience as part of the practice to get better.
I don’t think you can really discover yourself unless you start looking at things from the outside and put yourself into the unknown. Just months after I turned 19 I moved to Los Angeles, CA by myself to attend art school. The school was by far an eye opener but my observation of the fashion/entertainment industry and the west coast lifestyle had the greatest impact on me. Everything I knew before this time was based on the perspectives of the city I was from, media and the people I was exposed to. I looked at this as such a great opportunity. No one could provide me with guidance and I could learn about life from my own experience. The best part is there was no path, literally. No one could tell me the shortcuts through the city, their favorite stores or even what events were going on in the evening, if any. I had to figure this all out on my own. That was the best part, the journey to discovery. By the end of my discovery I was over California, so I thought. Today my vision is different. Once a student of the world of fashion, I’m on the pathway of entrepreneurship. I didn’t forget what I loved about California the first time I moved here or the things I despised. Instead I’ve been taking all the things I’ve learned about since my return to Boise and now.
This is what I know now that I didn’t know then:
I like the research not just the results.
I like the art, not the advertising.
I like the networking, not the ladder climbing.
I like the outreach, not the spamming.
I like the psychology, not the manipulation.
I like problem solving, not the selling.
I like the passion, not the affiliation.
I like new things, not expensive things.
I like creation, not the design.
I like the unexpected, not the expected.
I like collaboration, not competition.
I discovered a lot of this comparing the music industry my friends were in, to the fashion industry I was involved with. Although I didn’t really know it then until I started looking back on where my outlook started shifting. My friends in L.A. were producing music for major labels and I absorbed how they worked together. I felt that to better understand what they were going through I needed to put myself in their shoes. When I returned back to Boise the first class I signed up for was Audio Production. Since then I volunteered for various music organizations, events or happenings in the valley. I wanted to learn from other perspectives in the industry, not just one. There was something about it that caught my interest and it was deeper than the misconception a lot of people have who want to be involved. I really wanted to understand what artists were going through and help out. At the time I wasn’t even pursuing to be in music but I somehow find myself there, still. Then as I started finding more interests about the industry I started applying my schooling towards it. It was easier for me to apply what I was doing than learn from case studies in a textbook. To me marketing has always been the hobby and spending time in music was the work.
How could I take what I loved about my hobby; marketing and make it so it is beneficial for others? I knew I wanted to do marketing when I realized it really is the art of business but I didn’t want to be a “marketer”. I didn’t want the title of a suit or as a status the “underdog” would feel that they couldn’t talk to. I just wanted to be able to help people with marketing for their benefit. To be able to do the marketing and help the people who needed it most. This is what I discovered in L.A., who I didn’t want to be but find out how could I do marketing my way? The” ladder-archy” of titles has never been a fan of mine. Grab one of my business cards or talk to someone who has worked with my in other organizations. Make up a word for the title. People make new words everyday, why can’t we make new titles? The business world is changing and so are responsibilities the old way of thinking is functional job-duties not multi-tasking.
Almost a decade later I find myself back in California with a new perspective back on the skateboard again, literally and I’m doing marketing, music, art and fashion my way. At the same time I continue finding myself trying new things everyday to learn new perspectives not just to learn about other people but maybe something will happen to make me look at something in my life differently. In the meantime it’s still work. The networking, researching and outreach. I’ve found something I want to apply myself for and I keep continuing to dissect every piece I can.
So what is it with the skateboarding and surfing lessons? It’s my next marketing project- that’s all I can say for now 🙂