Transitions are inevitable. In two days, I transition from being 21 to 22. So for the past couple of days, my mind has been wrapped up in nostalgia and thoughts about the future. Transitions are both expected and unexpected. I look forward to them, yet I’m unwilling to open my door when they arrive.
In the past week, I’ve undergone another transition. That is, the brand name I used to operate under is no longer “Brother Humbled” (although I am keeping the name on this blog and other platforms for sentimental and convenient reasons). If you follow me on social media or visited my website recently, you probably should have noticed the changes by now.
For two years, I used this name as an outward expression of my creativity. I’ve collaborated with other artists, created books, and developed as an artist while donning this alter ego. My artistry was my superpower and I scoured the online streets for opportunities to help people. Yet perhaps it’s time to hang up my cape. Or wear a new one.
My new brand name is “BryanCreatesAndCopies.” While it doesn’t necessarily signal a change in operation, I’m both excited and nervous about the rebranding. But why the sudden change?
Playing a Character
There’s plenty of reasons that I can give. And while some are worth more explanations than others, the main one I have settled on at the moment is that I no longer wanted to play a character.
Now don’t get me wrong. I still love “Brother Humbled” and I didn’t plan on changing my brand name anytime soon. But as time went on, it became clear at this point that this name has run its course. If you followed the blog for the past couple of months, you’ll see what I’m talking about.
For a long time, I relied on anonymity when it came to online interactions. I wouldn’t simply tell you my name unless I trusted you. Out of fear and safety, I didn’t want to reveal the true me. I rarely post selfies and I only use my personal social media accounts to either people watch or catch up on the news. Because of shyness and low self-esteem, I needed creative usernames and artistic profile pictures to interact with people online. I had to become someone else.
I’m now at a point where I can’t play pretend anymore. If I’m going to progress further as a freelancer, then I’ll have to risk a little more transparency. Hence why I added my first name to my new brand name. I also needed to be more direct about what I do. Admittedly, “Brother Humbled” is a bit of vague in terms of how it relates to my skillset. It is the name of a character I made up for a poetry book I wrote two years ago. It’s not as relevant as I thought it was. Nor is it as meaningful to other people as it is to me. So while it was (and still is) an awkward transition to go through, I had to eventually let go of a character and find my place in the real world as a real person.
Living in Transitions
I always viewed myself as a traveler instead of a homeowner. With no place to lay my head, yet always trying to keep my head up in the midst of flux and uncertainty.
I live in transitions. I never get comfortable with complacency. Everything I need to create can fit inside a car I currently don’t own. Balancing technology and creativity, I have the resources to extract the abstract and guide it to reality.
To any artist who is struggling with branding, here is one advice that I can give. Think of your brand name as a tattoo. When you first get it, you’re excited to show it off. But the day will come when you might regret getting it. And that’s completely normal. You can always get a new one. Your brand name doesn’t define you. In fact, it’s rare for most artists to keep one public alias throughout their entire careers. We can never truly be satisfied with anything, so we have to constantly reinvent ourselves.
In this new season, I’m not sure what to expect. I want to remain hopeful that better opportunities will come my way. That I’ll meet new people who will help me grow as a person and a brand. As long as I live in transitions, anything is possible. I can’t expect to make an impact by simply waiting for change to happen. When transitions occur, I have to keep moving and working. If you’ve been with me since Brother Humbled, I hope you will transition with me as BryanCreatesAndCopies.