Why “Big Green Ape”?

Big Green Ape…the beginning.

First things first…why Big Green Ape?  Well, the idea came from some pajamas that my twin boys had when they were younger.  One of the characters printed on the pj’s was a big green ape.  By adopting this persona I am always reminded to first, question things with the unencumbered view of a child, and secondly, never loose the love of art I developed when I was young. (Suppose it doesn’t hurt to have a resemblance either.)

We have much to learn from the pure view we had as children.  Free from the jaded glasses we wear as adults, stained by years of taking it from the man.  Don’t we all long for the days of freedom we enjoyed before our indoctrination into society.

The Big Green Ape is my license to ask “Why?”

Now the boring background stuff.

So I’ve been at this design thing for over 20 years now, doing everything from production artist at a t-shirt shop in college to a creative director and now business owner.  It’s been a fun ride and I’ve accomplished all the goals I had for myself when I started out.

With our small design firm doing pretty well it’s time to dream about what the next phase of my career might hold.  This one is a little more difficult to nail down, but just as exciting.  The thing I really enjoy is working with people who are younger than I am.  They still have that fire in their bellies and are motivated to try new things.  This is a great help as I try to define Shawn 2.0.

I’m a dad to three great kids and a husband to an amazing woman.  As much as I like my career, I love spending time with them even more.  I’ve been a soccer coach for my boys and most recently their Cub Scout leader. This fall my daughter will start playing soccer and I’m really looking forward to that.  Most of all I’m looking forward to a summer of fun and sun at Lake Roosevelt with the family.

When it comes to putting me in a “Tribe” (see Seth Godin’s book on the subject) that get’s kinda hard.  Here’s a quick list of some things I like and you’ll see that this list has some real contraditions…but hey, that’s what makes me who I am.

I am a dad, husband, brother, son, designer, small business owner, technology geek, iphone addict and collecter of apps, sci-fi and fantasy lover, conservative, aspiring catholic, podcast junkie, new Twitter addict, ex-athlete, wanna be athlete, football fan, nascar fan, Coast to Coast AM listener, history buff..especially Roman history, Food Network fan, new Geocaching enthusiest, fly fisherman, Adult Swim fan, people watcher, facebook users, aviation nut, antique car lover, Mac user and Adobe super fan (if I were to get a tattoo it would be the Adobe logo), home repair handyman, Cub Scout leader, wanna be chef (once I remodel our kitchen), Eagle Scout, son of small business owners, guitar owner (notice I didn’t say player, but that may change), Jeep driver, conversationalist, peace maker, B television fan, old time radio fan, child of the 70s, teen of the 80s, and illustrator with a goal of illustrating a children’s book by year end.

As you can see I’m all over the board, but I think it’s that diversity that helps me be a good designer and an interesting person.

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