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One Year

I’m celebrating the one-year birthday of Small Pond Graphics today! It’s been a year marked by new things, for sure. New starts. New day-to-day activities. New creative environment. New skills. New collaborations. And, thankfully, new clients. I’ve had the opportunity this year to spread my wings a little. My task has been to do the very things I so often help clients do. Differentiate myself. Own my unique offerings. Determine what I’m passionate about in this industry. Establish my own voice. Tell my story. And do the work.

As I acknowledge the milestone of one year in business, I’ve been thinking over the story of Small Pond Graphics — what I want my company and my design life to be about — and I keep coming back to two ideas that continually get me hopping.

It’s a small world.

You only have to enjoy a 140-character Twitter conversation with a web designer in Australia on a Thursday morning to realize it. You only have to look at countries and businesses and people half-way around this ball pushing through the same struggles and successes to realize we are all companions in this journey called work and life. So many times, we eschew small in favor of bigger and better. But, what I’ve seen with the growth of social media and the changing climate of our digital lives is that this new technology is moving us smaller and smaller with the ability to share the details of life and business with folks we would never have imagined just twenty years ago. In fact, the social marketplace we inhabit is becoming more and more like the word-of-mouth Main Street of black and white movies. The Main Street is just a global one now.

With these realities comes the fact that we all start small. Small is inevitably the beginning of big. Giving attention to the small things and doing them well is the foundation for bigger things — bigger services, bigger markets. I want to cultivate in Small Pond Graphics an appreciation and attention to small things, seemingly small clients, small details. I want to be excellent, not “even” in, but especially in the small.

Frogs can be princes.

In my very first blog post here, Prince Potential, I was thinking about the old tale of the frog and the princess — more specifically, her willingness to look past the wartiness of the creature to see his potential. And, her willingness to risk a kiss to make it happen. Yes, it’s a great fairy tale, but there’s something about it I want to capture in the real life of my business. So often we live in a world where WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) is paramount. I think that’s a shame. It defies one of those remarkable things about entrepreneurs and great thinkers and just humans — the ability to exceed expectations, to offer well beyond what has already been conceived. I want “what you get” from Small Pond Graphics to be much more than what you’ve already imagined. It’s how I see my role with my clients. One of my passions has always been to apply creativity, good design skills and even a few new thoughts to a client’s “big idea” — to help it achieve fruition with it’s best face on. In essence, to give marketing and visual wings to someone’s dream. No, not every project requires that kind of flight. But, I do believe every project and every client deserves that kiss of uncommon imaginative attention. I want Small Pond Graphics to be about giving it. Every time.

So, you’ve been privy to my own evaluations and ramblings on this Small Pond birthday. Thank you. And thank you for your support and confidence during this first year in business. I’m looking forward to another year of finding princes.

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