University is a great place to explore and really dive deep into what interests you the most—the greatest thing about GBDA is how accessible and easy it makes exploring your passions! GBDA creates an atmosphere of design and business where you can pursue your artistic passions as a full-time job once you graduate. Thanks to the state-of-the-art recording lab on the Stratford campus, I discovered my passions for writing and audio production, and refined them through lots of music production, voiceovers, and scriptwriting. Once I was comfortable with my skill level, it was a no-brainer to begin a podcast. I titled it “UX in the World”— it looks at modern case studies of user experience design, and how design will positively impact our lives.
But creating a podcast isn’t easy. For many, you need to record your segments professionally, do multiple takes, set up an RSS feed and store your episodes in a complicated setup to ensure they’re distributed properly. This was definitely a barrier of entry for me, until I found this absolutely amazing app called Anchor, available on iOS and Android. This app allows you to create your own podcast straight from your phone. Yes, really. It’s that easy.
What Makes Anchor so Engaging?
Anchor is a hidden gem of an app, with the most attentive and compassionate team of workers behind it. Record audio on your phone, or upload a pre-recorded clip online, and within an hour, you can make that an episode of a podcast. Anchor covers all the back-end of setting your podcast up for you. Not a worry on your end. Or, if a podcast is too threatening, you can simply share it to the Anchor community and stop there. Once published, other Anchor users can applaud or comment on your segment, and even call in to your station just like the radio! It’s a truly one-of-a-kind experience, and a must-have app.
I found Anchor through a friend posting about it on Twitter, and have since recruited other GBDA friends. We all talk about design, the latest tech, and the world through a designer’s eye, but from very different, meaningful perspectives. The other GBDA alumni and upper years you can find on Anchor are Abbie Goulet, Lauren Dagworthy as “Sun Whale”, and Emily Hutnik as “The Innovation Intern”.
The community on Anchor is so incredibly supportive and engaging, you will not be afraid to begin sharing your thoughts. If you have had even an inkling of interest in podcasting, you must download Anchor right now.
The Response of “UX in the World”
Once I got into Anchor for a couple weeks, I felt my “UX in the World” episodes deserved a wider reach beyond just audio, and the brand I had created was due for an expansion beyond the app.
I write on Medium pretty regularly for various publications, but there are always a bunch of restrictions to what can and can’t be posted on those. If a work doesn’t get published, it doesn’t reach much of an audience, and that’s just no good. Sick of the pointless rules I had to follow with the current publications, I rebelled and created my own publication on Medium, titled “UX in the World” after my podcast brand, so I could share all my design and UX thoughts with the world in a more accessible, digestible format. My first article was all about my experience on Anchor, the genius of the app, and the significance of audio in a consumer’s world. It instantly became a hit.
From cross-promoting my podcast with the publication, and sharing that article around my social media, I began receiving emails from people on Anchor and across the world who found the post well-written. One site in England asked to re-publish the article and credit me, which I agreed to, I received a request to record a segment about audio in the modern world for someone’s shortcast (a 5-minute podcast), and was even asked to produce a short intro musical track for someone else’s podcast who noticed I also liked to compose music.
I got all this attention simply because I wanted to educate the world on something I knew a lot about, which happened to be User Experience design (thanks GBDA). One little side project became three major client responses within three weeks, and it’s all because I put the effort into pursing my passions and making great content.
The Future—Try Everything
Podcasting is a tedious process to keep up with. As of right now (July 2017), I publish two episodes a week, sometimes more if I’m feeling up to it—but I also have a stupid amount of free time on my hands. In the future, I probably won’t be able to post as much. Yet, I still record little bits of thoughts and interact with other stations every single day, even if those recordings don’t become podcasts. These thoughts and opinions are what keep my station alive and listeners interested, and create the personality they can connect with behind the microphone.
I have a lot of faith in my new brand going forward, and if there’s one thing GBDA has taught me, it’s to try everything you can, because you’re only guaranteed to fail if you don’t try at all. I want to take “UX in the World” to the next level, create an educational video series based around it, and spread my slogan “Let’s Educate the World” across everything I make. I want to write full-time, and create amazing stories that people will want to listen to.
Just know that anything’s possible if you set your mind to it. Thanks to GBDA, people have started design firms, worked for huge names like Amazon and Facebook, created their first EP, sold their digital artwork, and pursued their strongest passions as their full-time careers. They’re living the dream. If you start investing time in your passions now, you can too.
Subscribe to my content! I create for a living, and like to inspire people to follow their dreams.
My podcast, UX in the World can be found at the following places:
Apple Podcasts: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/ux-in-the-world/id1254056216
Pocket Casts: http://pca.st/uYfl
Austin Fisher GBDA '17
Writer, Graphic and Game Designer, Composer
Former GBDA Society President
I have a range of skills with strengths particularly in professional writing and game design. I write for articles, blogs, and stories. I design graphics for brands, logos, websites, games, animations, and infographics, particularly in flat design. I compose for film and game soundtracks, and have other projects targeting the pop music industry.
I'm knowledgable in User Experience and Marketing, able to design and adapt my work accordingly to various markets.