He signed a lease on a storefront and i gave my work my two weeks notice.

My parents were devastated when I told them I'd be leaving my secure office admin job where I had spent the last year working my way up from the factory floor to the packaging department, then logistics manager, assistant to the warehouse manager, and finally as the assistant office manager, where I wore dress shoes and tucked in collared shirts. They were so proud of where I'd gotten to and quitting to work in a skate shop looked like a big step backwards.

While I worked in the retail store full-time, my passion was building the brand. My pipe dream was to build the brand so strong that sales would easily allow me to travel the world, riding my scooter on the company's dime. Unfortunately, this would never be the case. On multiple occasions, I spent many thousands of dollars of my own money traveling to New Zealand, France, and Spain with the sole (and soul) purpose of promoting the company. The plan to generate more sales was definitely working; international distributors were placing orders and more and more products were going into production.

With the addition of global distributors, the owner got a taste of what it was like to see some scale. He started pushing more products through the pipeline to increase revenue, but we didn't feel we were testing the products properly or designing them to be as beautiful as we'd like. It was our reputation that was so connected to these products, and we were extremely passionate about how they should look and feel. But every attempt to slow the go-to-market rush and increase quality resulted in arguments with the owner.

Dedicating your professional life and 100% of your free time and money to a company that gets angry at you for wanting to improve their product is not what id call "feeling valued". The relationship continued to spoil, and eventually, we made a decision as a team to leave. It was devastating to feel like I had no other option but to walk away empty-handed from something I poured so much of my life into. But I was also optimistic that by now, my reputation in the industry would be enough to carry me into a much better position at another company where my expertise and passion would hopefully be valued.

It was during this time that “35mm of Freedom” takes place.

Finding Freedom is meant to be read in the following order:
Petition,  Dedication,  Conviction,  Exodus,  Competition,  
Treason,  Funding,  Physical,  Virtual,  Exponential.
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