Jared K. Nickerson

You can get a lot of truth out of people that have no connection to you.

Almost everything I've learned about design has been self taught. When I began playing around with Illustrator, my designs were awful, but I wanted to get better. And I've found that a great way to improve is to get feedback from people online. They see your artwork for the first time, and their initial reaction and feedback is very important. You can get a lot of truth out of people that have no connection to you.

Eventually, people began noticing my work, and I managed to land a design job and do some freelancing on the side. I was about 3 years into my full time job when I realized that I was making more money freelancing than I was at my job. I didn't need to work in an office anymore... That was it for me! And I just quit... I haven't looked back since. I've been freelancing for 11 years now.

I'm glad it happened the way it did, a lot of people struggle to go freelance, and I was really able to ease myself into it. One thing I've struggled with though is time-management and discipline, to be honest.

As a freelancer, you work at home in front of your desk. And at my desk, I play video games, I design, I work on music, write some lyrics... I actually have a band, called Dead Astronauts, which is awesome. We're finishing up our first album, and I'm really passionate about it. I love putting time into it so it's really hard to separate my personal and work life. You have to draw very clear guidelines.

A few years back, I promised my wife I'd be more organized, and spend time away from work in the evenings and the weekends... Whether I've kept to that promise is another thing... But I've definitely tried!

Jared K. Nickerson

Freelance illustrator, musician and singer.

Adidas Originals

Drowned Harbor Edition designed by Jared K. Nickerson commissioned by Adidas Originals, introducing a number of themes including sci-fi, classic small town signage and Adidas Originals Culture.


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