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I have a confession to make. When I was first getting into hand lettering, I saw every other hand letterer as my competition.

Essentially, I thought, “Oh, they’re doing the same thing I’m doing and they’re trying to get the same kind of work I am, so I guess they’re the enemy!”

But this is such a sad way of thinking. I’m embarrassed to even share that with you now years later, but I know I’m not alone in dealing with these feelings.

What I realized was these people were not my competition, they were my community.

This past week, I had some really good conversations. It’s amazing what a little perspective can do for you when you make time to connect with people and really listen. It’s so easy to get trapped in the reverberation of our own thoughts.

I won’t detail each conversation individually, but I will pull out some of the principles and things that stuck with me this week.