What is Shane’s experience?
I’ve been helping business owners digitally convey their messages for about as long as I can remember.
It started out like this…
Back in 1995, I started a mobile window tinting company in Las Vegas, Tintek Window Tinting. I eventually became one of the most sought-after window tinters in the valley. I did extremely well and established a stellar reputation. My phone rang off the hook and I could hardly keep up with the demand.
I was tired of relying on others to create my own marketing materials, so I started to teach myself how to do it. We’re talking back in the late ’90s. Working on an old PC, with dial-up internet, AOL, and using Print Master design software. It was brutal, but I wouldn’t settle for mediocrity. So over the years, I would upgrade my machines, cameras, software, and knowledge base.
As a mobile window tinter, I would find myself in the back of businesses working on fleet trucks and then eventually the owners’ Hummer. The owner would ask for my card and impressed, they would ask, who does these for you? (meaning the cards) I would tell them that I designed them and had them printed. Back then they were pretty flashy. 14 pt, gloss black with a silver foil logo. I would hand them a flyer I designed and direct them to my website. Yes, I had a website for my tint company back in the ’90s, however, most of my business was still coming from phone book ads back then.
In any case, the owner of the business would be impressed with my marketing materials and would ask me if I could help them out with theirs. Of course, I obliged.
Slowly but surely, I would find myself helping business owners more with their business needs than with tinting their windows.
I continued to educate myself incessantly.
I got a job at Sunkist Grafix in Henderson and it wasn’t long before they put me in the Chromira department, running 60″ LED large format printers. Well, what was great about that was, not only was I learning large-format printing, but I was also dramatically evolving my design skills.
I would cue up a roll of film and it would take a couple of hours to print. So, I would use the time to play around in photoshop. When I ran into an obstacle that I couldn’t overcome, I would walk over to the art department and ask a dozen different artists how to do what I was wanting to do. It was very enlightening. I would be shown several different ways to accomplish the same result. I ate it up.
I worked late and would have clients come to my manager’s office pretending it was mine. I would consult, create, and deliver while at my job. Don’t get me wrong, I have a very high work ethic and all of my tasks for Sunkist were completed before I catered to my own clients.
I was learning the differences between Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, and Corel Draw while being shown the diametrically opposed worlds of vector-based and bitmap graphics. I was understanding the various image formats of jpg, tiff, eps, png, pdf, etc. I was taught the nuances between RGB, CMYK, and HEXADECIMAL color palettes. Not only was I learning about these things; I was creating, printing, and physically installing these graphically laden substrates.
I opened a photography studio called Lucid Lenz, with a Sony Cybershot, and was shooting, printing, and hanging beautiful portraits for families all over the valley. I was subsequently hired to shoot weddings in Las Vegas, Sedona, Zion, and Calabasas.
I was commissioned by Parade of Homes to design their magazine and help their vendors with their marketing materials.
All the while, I was incrementally learning the seemingly fragile and frustrating world of web design. I started with basic HTML and then FLASH showed up. I hired a couple of people versed in FLASH to implement my visions. I would design statically in Photoshop and they would drop the elements into the FLASH templates that I would purchase.
Then APPLE dropped the bomb… no more FLASH! All of that work over the years was in vain as HTML5 came into the scene.
I dipped my toes into the world of WordPress, just long enough to get cold feet and run the other way. I found myself immediately frustrated with the platform. For the record, this was around 2008.
So, I took it upon myself to build sites on Wix and Weebly. My clients were satisfied, but I wasn’t.
After a couple of years, I decided once again to give WordPress a shot. I had to, half the web was built with it and the professionalism of Weebly severely lacked in luster.
Fast forward more than a decade and I’m certainly glad I weathered the digital storm of nuance and frustration as my skills have liberated me from being confined to an office and a boss.
To date, I have successfully assisted hundreds of businesses all over the country and continue to this day.