Tumetoka Mbali – 3 Years in the Making

I recently got a new machine after surviving for about 3 months with one that sounded like a tractor coz of a faulty fan. I tell you, it was so loud I couldn’t hang out at the iHub coz people would look at me weird! But anyways, that’s beside the point. Thing is, I had to import my mailbox from the old machine to the new one. In the process, I stumbled upon one of the emails I’d written to the second client I ever had, with a design attached to it! It was such an intense moment it made my mind go back in time for a few minutes.

I sat there looking at that design and thinking to myself just how far I’ve come, or as those of you who know me would find more befitting, “how far God has brought me”.

I thought I’d share the first two designs I ever made for clients. If you compared these to the kind of designs David and I are rolling out now, you’d probably be visibly shocked! However, I think it will prove to you that we all have to start from somewhere, and those aspiring to be web designers and developers shouldn’t be scared to venture into the field simply because everyone else seems to be doing it so much better. Be relentless and work at it.

The first design, December 2008

As you can tell from the caption, I’ve been at this for 3 years now. So much water has gone under the bridge, so much knowledge has gone into my brain, so much experience has gone under my belt. However, I truly hope that 3 years from now, I’ll look back at the designs I made this year and shake my head the same way I do now.

The second design, January 2009. Referred by the first clients.

I gasped when I saw this! What was I thinking?!

Again, as you can tell from the caption, I was quickly learning that if you do a good job, it will attract more work as your clients refer you to their friends and associates. However, I also learnt the hard way that there’s something called a down payment  and a contract. This fella (the site’s owner, not the guy pictured above) has never paid me a single cent to this very day! In fact, I spent my money going to see him in Kakamega yet I was staying in Eldoret!

So there you have it. Don’t be afraid to step out and do what you want to do. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Just remember: Whatever you do, don’t stop learning.

Ever tried? Ever failed? No matter.
Try again. Fail again.
Fail better.

– Samuel Beckett

  • Thanks guys this is very inspiring to know you also started here….

  • Lol! Kweli umetoka mbali. Your article made me think about my first designs and just like you, I can say nimetoka mbali. Showing your first designs is a really great idea as it gives hope to guys just starting out.

  • Thanks Huston, thats some good inspiration.

    • Hey Allan! Long time! Thanks, man. Let’s keep on keeping on.

      • Kabisa, you truly are one to look up to. Love the new site design, would love if you could point me in the right direction in terms of resources/ebooks/blogs that got you these ‘martian’ skills :-) Or did you just land with them from mars? :-S

        • Haha! You know, I landed here n thought the skills from Mars would be on another level but I quickly found out that Earth is a whole new terrain, man! Totally unanticipated. I’ve had to adapt, so yes, the skills were (and still are being) attained.

          Thing is, if I were to list sources, I’d just give you one comprehensive link… Google! Curiosity is all you need, the info is virtually everywhere.

          • LOL, totally martian of you! Well, lemme get googling then, ahsante sana.

signed. martians.™