So far outside the box, I guess I've sort of forgotten just what the inside of the box ever looked like! That's a good thing... right?
30 plus years ago and just a few weeks before Christmas, I was laid off from my job as a construction foreman building residential condominiums. However, just a month or so prior, I was given the opportunity to construct the main identification sign for the complex, allowing me to earn some extra cash for the holidays. Fortunately for me, I really enjoyed the creativity that this project gave me, which prompted me to do the following. I blatantly took the last $80 dollars to my name and rented a warehouse for $75 bucks, opened an account at a paint store, a second at a lumber yard, and I started my one-man sign company. I put the remaining $5 bucks in my pocket for operating expenses... you know, lunch!
Although I started out just making small painted signs, my little company grew, gathering tremendous talent along the way. Over several years it evolved into a unique studio fabricating some very elaborate illuminated signage that is well recognized across America . Having perhaps the largest assembly of artists and craftsmen gathered in one facility, year after year, we received first place awards and recognitions for our superior design, creativity and craftsmanship.
My greatest asset has always been my team. I've always encouraged them all to think outside the proverbial 'box'. In doing so, we became increasingly more recognized by major clients, even receiving our 15 minutes of fame on live national TV for the opening of a large retail center just outside of Atlanta .
What has always been interesting is that I had never previously worked for any other graphic design or signage firm. I've been told by many this has always been one of my greatest assets. I didn't quite understand what that meant until it was explained that I had simply not learned their 'bad' habits. I had found my own way, instilling fresh thoughts and ideas into all the things I touched. I liked that, and once I got my arms around that idea, I feel like I really started to grow as a good designer.
At the turn of the millennium I was ready for a change. I was impressed with opportunities that the world-wide web seemed to present and I wanted to be a part of it so, in true BobLee style, I set out to bring my design knowledge to the Internet. We had always been on the cutting edge of technology in the sign