Why I Quit Corporate Work To Intern As A Designer

I was 11, in front of the TV with colouring pencils and my ‘portfolio’ of interior design – I was hooked on that show Changing Rooms (you know, the one with Carol Smillie and Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen? Yeah that one). I was always doodling and drawing room designs as a kid. This moved onto a love for graphic design at school, and inevitably exploring art college to hone in on my love for all things design. But, in the end I never applied, I was too afraid of failing.

So there I said goodbye to a career in creativity and went on to work in the corporate world of sales and marketing at 18, after a sabbatical from responsibilities to travel the world for 6 months. My 10 years working in this industry has not been regretful, far from it, I learnt a lot and quickly too. I’m a firm believer in knowledge is not always written and who better to learn from than your predecessors who have made mistakes already. Not only did I learn and develop as a person, but I met incredible, inspiring and extremely knowledgable people, some of whom I will call friends forever.

Now of course, a strong, and some may say shallow thing that drove me to stay working was money. Whilst the majority of my friends were eating pot noodles on campus and dreaming of holidays they couldn’t afford, I was ticking off places on my bucket list every couple of months and never stopped adventuring. There were two things I always wanted money for: seeing the world, and one day being able to own my very own dream home. Ever since I turned 18, I made a travelling rule to never visit the same place twice, and always always saved money every month for ‘the big house’.

Which leads me to now, where i’ve reached a point in my career that it shouldn’t be a toss up between passion and money – if you can have both, why not try and get there. I’m 28, and after thinking i’m too old to start over because of the social pressures of babies before careaer as a woman, I had to realise I have another 40 years of work ahead of me, and if I don’t take a risk now I never will. So with the encouragement of those who love me, push me and support me, I took the leap and applied to do an internship in Interior Architecture with the award-winning designer Roisin Lafferty – my dream company. It was the most terrifying i’ve ever done, but when I got it (eek!), I was so immensely proud of myself for not playing life safe, because there’s only one, right?

I started MintMag.ie to not let my creative mind fall asleep. It allows me to talk about and share things i’m passionate about. Now i’m so glad I can do creative things all day long.

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