Every piece is an opportunity to grow
The road to success and achievement is not a simple one.
My early years were hard. Life in school, as a young boy with a fascination for Sci-Fi and Computers. Neither of these things were popular at this point. In the 80s, these were not developed interests for young people – they weren’t even deemed to be good options for career paths. Inevitably, I was horribly bullied – but I persevered. My Father, always encouraging, told me to not waiver in my own convictions – so I carried on.
Life got immeasurably easier when I arrived in Birmingham to study at University.
With the rise of the internet and the growing popularisation of ‘hacker’ culture – I felt like I was finally stepping into a world that was made for me.
On my Computer Science course, I was fortunate enough to meet dozens of like-minded individuals. The coding knowledge that I’d accumulated over the years of learn-by-mail was starting to pay off.
I had arrived.
As much as I enjoyed learning, it was also a time when I discovered a raft of new kindred spirits. As a result, my work started slipping. But for the first time, I felt like I actually had friends.
After a couple of close calls with exams, I sorted my self out and started putting the time in to my studies. There’s only so long you can party for, and I had a future to build. I finished with a good strong 2:1 and a thirst to learn something new – namely design.
I didn’t want to be known all my life as a tech-centric weirdo, with nothing but a superior knowledge in Mathematics and Computer Architecture.
I had artistic ambitions, damn it and I wanted to follow them.
After spending 2 years saving, programming code for a small software company operating in London, I had the cash to take myself to Art School.
I had a little difficulty getting in. Believe it or not, but it was a little hard to convince a board of Art Academics that a Computer Science graduate could produce original pieces of art. Thankfully, my portfolio, which I’d been working on in my spare time, was enough to convince them.
Starting in Art School, deep in the heart of London’s fashionable Brick Lane area, was almost like going back to school again.
The young, idealistic art students were mistrustful of a man 6 or 7 years their senior. From my 2 years as a programmer, I’d picked up an air of corporate rigidity. After I proved myself with my work, things soon turned around.
During my time spent studying Art I continued staying up to date with programming codes. It’s a fast moving world – during the period between the late 90s and early 00s, a great deal changed in programming – I often had to spread myself pretty thinly to keep up with both my Art and Computer Science habits.