NYC is a b*tch until you pay your dues! (pt.3)

Creating my Chinese food to-go menu resume.

NYC is tough city and you have to pay your dues. I quickly found out that everything on Craigslist (including clients) are generally too good to be true. All of the so called projects that I found on Craigslist began to fall through and I needed to find another way to gain exposure. I knew the easiest way would be to work as an apprentice for another designer; but how would I get them to notice me? Luckily my handy Marketing degree came into play. I made a list of celebrity designers/event planners that I wanted to work with including Preston Bailey, David Tutera, Anthony Todd and Colin Cowie. None of these designers were soliciting for help, so I knew that I needed a creative way to catch their attention and want to hire me. So I came up with a ingenious resume that I would delivery to each office. I turned my resume into a fun Chinese food to-go menu along with a flower arrangement in a to-go carton that included soy sauce packets, chopsticks and a fortune cookie. I even took it a step further and had my friend Joseph Riley Land serve as delivery man and even made a delivery manifest for each designer to sign.

Completed Chinese food to-go menu resume package.

Completed Chinese food to-go menu resume package.

1 week later, I got a call from David Tuterra’s office to interview for an internship but had to decline the offer because I needed a paid gig. Totally bummed out, I found myself venting to my coworker Jillian at The Container Store. Come to find out she was a prop stylist and told me I could come and tag along on her next project. Working with Jillian Browder totally changed my life. I worked with her and learned the craft of prop styling, which exposed me to high profile clients such as Valerie Onor Design Working with Jillian and Valerie quiclky helped me kick start my prop styling career. I worked on several designer showhouses, Sotherby’s events, furniture showrooms and commercial projects including the Bailey, Banks & Biddle holiday campaign.

Valerie Onor Designs- Mikel Welch, Prop Stylist

Finally I was beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Little did I know that there would be a few more tunnels that I would have to navigate my way through……..

Follow me @mikelwelch




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