From as early on as I could express an opinion on it, I’ve thought of myself as an artist. Over time, that word has slowly changed meaning for me. For a long time, I thought it meant that I was supposed to be a commercial illustrator. I’ve spent a lot of time in my life pursuing that dream, arguably quite successfully, although not really successful in any commercial sense. At some point a few years ago, I realized that commercial success wasn’t all that fulfilling anyway, and that what I really wanted to do with my life is to make things that matter to people.
My fulfillment comes in creating things that improve people’s lives and bring them joy. I used to say that my goal in life was to create something every day that made others happy, whether that something was a website, a painting, or a hot meal. These days, as much as I still feel fueled every time that something I’ve made touches someone else, I also try to think hard about the impact I can have on the larger world around me. Art can save the world. If I call myself an artist, then it is my ongoing responsibility to keep trying to do just that.