They Say the Revolution Starts Oct. 24th
Out in the northwestern suburbs of Chicago, a man is working has made a Revolution. Well, actually he’s made three. He’s designer, Brian Gardner. The Revolutions are his three newest WordPress Themes: Revolution Revolution News, and Revolution Sports. We’ve planned a two part interview. This Thursday and next to talk about what Brian’s been doing and how he found himself a blog designer.
Howdy, sir. Tell me, who is Brian Gardner?
My name is Brian Gardner. I was born on December 27th, 1974, at 10:06 in the morning in Bellflower, California. That makes me 32 years old, but please don’t tell anyone. I am starting to get a receding hairline, which is why I shave my head. I’m a hubby, a dad, a son, an in-law, a friend, a designer and sometimes a writer.
You might find this difficult to believe, but 12 months ago I didn’t own my domain name, had never touched a piece of WordPress code and knew nothing about blog design. In other words, everything I’ve done with WordPress and blog design in the past year has been self taught, using trial and error.
I find myself hopelessly addicted to blog design and taking nightly runs to Starbucks for a triple shot grande toffee nut latte. Other things I am addicted to are watching Grey’s Anatomy, fantasy football, and the repeat button on my Sarah McLachlan CD’s each night as I sit in bed with my laptop and work on my freelance projects.
Any signs when you were eight years old that you’d be doing this today?
Absolutely not – when I was eight years old, I was going to be a baseball player. And at some point I realized that I wasn’t “gifted” like today’s athletes are, and my dream of playing at Veteran’s Stadium in Philadelphia came to a screeching halt. Throughout my years in high school, my passion became writing. I have written over 300 poems, but never formally put myself through training. Then I went to college and studied geography, because of my love for nature and the mountains. After two years in college, I retreated home, where I currently am a project manager and IT for an architectural design company. In addition, I do freelance design work, and hope to go full time in the near future.
How did you come to discover blogs?
To be honest, I cannot pinpoint the discovery – what I can say is that I am a recovering Blogspot (Google’s free blog software) user, and was lucky enough to have a friend challenge me into trying out WordPress. The reason I love the concept of blogging is that I am able to combine the two things I am most passionate about – writing and design. Fortunately for me, I have been able to teach myself how to design WordPress themes, so I am able to write on a platform using a theme that I believe in!
Brian, what got you started in your career?
When I realized that I was finally making money doing something I love – I fully believe that you should be passionate about your careers, especially if you are self-employed. To be able to wake up and “want” to go to work is a huge thing, and even though I am not currently doing that, I look forward to the day I can!
What made you realize that you really were a blog designer worth paying attention to?
After releasing a few free themes, I started to receive feedback, and requests from people wanting me to do custom work for them. I realized that this was a sign that people liked what I did, and when I started to feel sought after, it really affirmed my gifts of design and motivated me to do more. Another thing that made a difference, more so in fun, was watching my Technorati rank increase – when I first started blogging, I made it a goal to break the top 100 blogs, and I am currently at #21.
I really want to thank Mark over at Splashpress Media for giving me the opportunity to do the current design over at the Blog Herald. I felt that was a turning point in my career, and that it gave credibility to my name. The exposure there has really been wonderful, and I have been able to do many other projects with them.
Thanks, Brian! See you next week . . . when we’ll talk more about more about the story behind the Revolution. Anyone else have questions for Brian?
–ME “Liz” Strauss