Continual Learning Resources
After graduating from UCLA with a BA in Anthropology, I relished in the new-found freedom and unstructured environment. But after about a month I started to wonder what was next, what was my next learning goal?
During my studies at UCLA, I was able to take classes through the Design Media Arts program. I found out about the UCLA Extension program for design the summer going into my junior year and enrolled in some classes while attending the university. It honestly wasn't motivated by any career choice, just a desire to learn more about the medium of graphic design from teachers who actually did it for a living.
I love design because it gives me a platform to continually challenge myself and learn new things and I wanted to continue learning and increase my knowledge and skill-set in graphic design, so I continued taking classes after graduating from UCLA, and officially enrolled in the Design Communication Certificate program at UCLA Extension.
It was the best decision for me. It allowed me to take classes flexibly in accordance with my schedule, even when I was working full-time. It brought more knowledge and technique into what I already knew. It also provided a community of other creative people and ideas.
Now that I've officially completed the UCLA Extension Design Communication certificate, I have put most of my effort into establishing this company. But I also make sure to put aside time to develop my skills — including expanding into video production — to make myself more knowledgable for current and future clients.
Although I miss attending classes regularly, I've found other ways to fill my learning gap, listed below:
This is a great resource for... just about everything. From graphic design to business, to marketing, cooking, and most other creative endeavors. You can use my referral link to browse and sign up. It's about $100/year, which doesn't seem too much if you actually use it.
I used this a lot when I was attending UCLA (as a student I got an automatic subscription — otherwise it's more pricey than Skillshare, so I chose Skillshare for now). When I used it, it was a well-designed learning program that provided a good note-taking and sharing platform. It's a very reliable resource.
You can check out their website to view the potential courses you could enroll in, and start a free ten day trial to try it out.
YouTube & Google & Books.
Sometimes, I don't know everything. #GoFigure
There are some techniques that get lost if I don't practice them too often or are specific to a design creation. Fortunately, YouTube and Google Search are both places to find how to find the steps to create the vision I have.
And books. I have a collection of reference books for the programs I use when needed.
This isn't usually skill learning in the sense of teacher to student, but it's a way to connect with other people who share similar interests and learn from them. This is the forum where I connected with Tails of the Trails, who I've been a "Paw"-tographer for since November. I love walking and taking pictures of the dogs.
Another way to get involved in the community is Volunteer Match. Having a flexible schedule as a freelancer and business owner allows me to take some time in the morning or afternoon a couple days a week to contribute my time to something I care about. I might have to work late, but I learn new things in a different field (library reading or hospice care)
I hope you found this helpful if you're in a learning slump! Please comment below if you have any good resources to improve your skills with!