As I neared the end of my three years studying at Sheffield Hallam University (and the end of our glorious free Dominoâ€™s pizza vouchers), I noticed that most of my friends on my Graphic Design course had chosen a specialism to work towards (i.e. there were animators animating, illustrators illustrating, and typographers typing). I quickly came to realise that I didnâ€™t really have a specialism, and that I was just a â€œgeneralâ€ graphic designer â€“ which sounds rather dull, and comes with the implication that you are a â€œjack of all trades and a master of noneâ€.
Being considered a â€œjack of all tradesâ€ has always come with a negative connotation. It implies that you dabble in bits of everything, but never really achieve the level of expertise that is needed to be considered a specialist. In my view however, I see this label to be a symbol of flexibility, commitment, and an eagerness to learn. In order to become a â€œjack of all tradesâ€ you have to have the ability to adapt, and learn new skills so that you can complete the task that is at hand.