This blog is about Graphic Design, Vector Art, and Cartoon Illustration

January 20, 2015

How to make deadlines, and work quickly

My reputation as a person who makes deadlines goes way back to a lesson I learned when I was 18, working on the assembly line at Ford Motor - never start running.

I remember the guys on the line saying that once you started running, you would fall behind. The trick was smooth and steady movement, and being prepared. If you've ever worked on an assembly line, you know that it's all about being steady. And if you did have a burst of energy, you prepared assemblies in advance so that you could relax a bit.

So I have tried to apply that to everything in my life. I have the absolute minimum of wasted motion (I call that chasing your tail). I prepare in advance when there is down time. Down time, by the way, on an assembly line is when a car has been removed and there is a gap. The guys on the line used to shout *there's a gap coming!*

As a freelance artist, there are, unfortunately, a lot of gaps. Like this past holiday season, where work slows down. That's the time that I update my OS, or my software, my website, or, well, anything that isn't urgent, but still needs to be done.

Everything is at my fingertips when a job comes in. I know that everything works - my scanner, my software, everything. Even my pencils are sharpened. Some people would call this obsessive behavior, but I have used this technique to make deadlines, and work fast, all of my life.

So while the competition is looking for their car keys, I'm already over the finish line. And getting ready for the next race! Zoom-zoom!

No comments:

Post a Comment