Why you should build your own kickass career.

YOU GUYS. In just 6 years I went from renting an insect infested 600 square foot apartment (seriously, we had WORMS coming in through the windows) to co-owning a business and purchasing a one acre ranch home at the base of the mountains. In just 6 years I more than tripled my income, cut my work hours in half, and did this all by saying “screw the man I’m leaving my day job to build my own career”. You see, the thing about employment is, well, you're employed. And you're usually employed by someone else.

It's Friday! Here's some spacey bread.

Thought we'd celebrate Friday with some celestial gluten. Phil has been spending his non-working hours baking up homemade loaves and photographing his flakey creations - which oddly enough look just like planets. He's ended up with quite the collection of, what we've been referring to as, "Space Bread". So kick back and enjoy the short scroll through these yeasty wonders. Brought to you by hungry bellies and too much free time. Happy Friday!

Retainers: More money. More consistency. Less hassle.

Oh the case for retainers... Phil and I were back and forth on the retainer concept for quite a few years. Sure, it offered consistency and dependent income but it also reeked of stagnation. But before I jump into our thoughts on retainer payments, let's review what a retainer is: A retainer is a flat rate amount that the client pays on a set date for an extended period of time. For example, your client might pay you $5,000 per month for 6 months...

External Read: 3 Things You Need to Know Before Designing a Report

Today's External Read was written by Elyse Bogacz from InVision. Lately, we've been getting super, duper deep into info/data design - particularly reports. This is an awesome read by InVision with some fantastic reminders about working directly with data rich content. Whether it's reports, infographics, or even dashboards, this quick read will help keep you focused on what's important.

Yes, it's okay to turn down work.

When I start blabbing about turning down work, you may start to think: "Who is this crazy lady and why would she EVER recommend that I turn down projects!?" That being said, there are certain scenarios when turning down work is not an option and other times where it might prove to be extremely beneficial. I'm specifically talking about projects from a UI/UX designer's perspective but these suggestions can be applied to nearly any business niche. Let's review the good vs. bad times to turn down new projects.

The Mysterious Life of UX Designers

If you don't follow Web Designer News, you should. Everyday they pull in a collection of highly entertaining and informative stories from all over the web. These can be in the form of articles, videos, and free stuff, all hand picked specifically for web and UI/UX designers. If you subscribe to their newsletter, you can receive these curated items right in your inbox. It's a great way to keep up on the design chatter that's circulating the web.