Over the past few months, I've read quite a few articles by freelance illustrators and designers and something that keep cropping up is the idea of focussing on a particular aspect of their craft and creating a niche in which they totally excel. I like the sound of this, and over the past few years I've tried to base any creative plans around finding what it is I'm good at and honing the skills that I have to take me in a particular direction.
However, it's not as simple as it sounds (at least for me, anyway).
It might have something to do with the way my brain is wired, or it might be linked to my career which, over the past 25 years, has seen me work on projects that have required 2D sprites, 3D environments, animation, logos, menu design etc. I've never really had a job that required me to repeatedly use the same skills, so I've never been in a position to train my brain to focus on any one aspect of it. So every time I come to formulate some ingenious plan that involves focussing on just one area of my work, I get frustrated.
Maybe the answer then is to embrace the 'anything goes' mentality that I seem to have developed and see where that takes me. As much as I'd love to excel at something like illustrating kids books, I'd also like to write more. I'd like to get involved in graphic design projects, in animation, photography, painting. And who knows - if I keep chipping away at different creative endeavours, maybe I'll end up slipping into my very own niche without even noticing.