Lions Ask: The Logo Designer on a Yacht – Joel Pringle

Joel is an extremely talented and successful logo designer and an immensely positive person. We have been following his work for quite a while and appreciating his retro-inspired mascot logo design projects and business advice shared on his social media.
He is not only a very business-oriented person to partner up with when you need unique graphic design, he is also living a one-of-a-kind lifestyle – living and running his business from a yacht, where he spends his time with his fiancé Eve and his little son Henry who stays in the school holidays. 
The power of the Internet and social media allows him to work with people all around the world, while staying true to his principles and embracing the freedom he was always thriving for.
We want to dig deeper into his story and learn some interesting quirks about living at sea. 
A little bit about Joel’s background from Joel himself:
“I am a person who grew up in a disadvantaged situation and I have used the principles I share in my upcoming video course, Remote Business Pro to turn that story around.
I acknowledge and support all individuals for their very real issues as I get that life serves up some doozies. However, I believe that in order to keep moving forward we all need to own our problems and navigate around them, no matter how unfair. I feel this largely needs to be done on our own, ofcourse reaching out for temporary help when things get too much is a great idea, we just need to keep the idea of standing on our own two feet as the ultimate goal.
I believe I have a unique point of view because on the surface, it would appear that I’ve had a pretty easy time of it. I am a white male, born in a first world country, I’m now even pretty well-off! The reality however is that my childhood was a place of zero stability. From generational poverty, verbal and other types of abuse, even other family members using illicit substances around me, I made poor initial choices once I became a young adult. The cause of those choices were essentially not knowing who was a positive influence and who wasn’t. As I began to mature I realized both my employment and relationship were extremely unhealthy. After trying all I could in both, I ended up without a job and divorced! Both of these happenings have the potential to rob anyone of progress in their life.
I do not say this to get sympathy, I am doing absolutely great in life inspite of a not so great start and some dumb choices on my part. My point is that no matter what is affecting you negatively, be it something somebody else has done to you or something you’ve bought on yourself, if you accept that only you have the responsibility to react productively to it, then you’ve halfway to overcoming it. The rest is using logic and being honest with yourself to see what you need to do to move forward and then doing exactly that.
I was careful how much I leaned on people. While other people are great support, the process of moving forward largely has to be done by yourself. We look at somebody trying to get off a drug as somebody who needs to consciously make better choices based on their own genuine will to change. While it’s an extreme example I feel it’s similar for people who want to escape normality or change the tide in their life. If you want to level up you have to accept responsibility. It’s my view you have to be committed to get there with a combination of a little help from others (if it’s there) but mostly your own strength. The trap is finding other people who share your problems (this is easy) and blending in with that group (way too easy). Those groups sympathize with the victim which is soothing short term but if it turns into a culture of ongoing celebration of victimhood it doesn’t help the individual move forward. The goal is that we all can shine as strong, diverse individuals.

The reward for the work involved in moving forward is that you’re left with a life that is a projection of your potential. I feel that is worth the effort.

What was your highlight of 2020?

I have three.
1. I got to spend 6 months with Henry, my little boy, who normally lives in Melbourne. He was supposed to be visiting for two weeks but stayed for 6 months!
He stayed with us on the yacht and when we realized it would be longer term we enrolled him in the local school.
While it was something we hadn’t planned, we made it work and it was great to have that extended time with our little man.
2. It was a buzz to finally get my business dialled.
I went from earning about minimum wage in my old business model to earning 6 times that in one year.
I believe any person with the right business approach and life principles can make great money doing what they are good at and love doing.
3. I was able to keep a cool head during the time when people were panicking about the pandemic.
I saw an opportunity to get into trading (stocks, bitcoin etc) at a time when people were panic buying toilet paper.
For instance, I bought a lot of bitcoin when it was worth $9k and at the time of writing its worth $60k.
It allowed me to make my first small passive income stream. I’m not a financial advisor or stock trader and I don’t give financial advice. My point is there are opportunities to level up happening all the time and I’m now really passionate about helping others seize those opportunities for themselves.

What did you do for a living before graphic design?

I have always worked as a graphic designer, since I was 16.
During that time I worked extra jobs to keep the dream of doing design on my own terms alive and I have worked for McDonald’s, mowed people’s lawns, worked as a cleaner and been a bartender. 

How much time a day do you spend working on your designs?

I work a lot, because I absolutely love it.
I have created extremely efficient processes, so much of my time these days is spent marketing the business, such as doing this interview, organizing amazing things like YachtTrip21, which was just completed where I took 10 of my followers out for an incredible four-night sailing adventure around the Whitsunday Islands using two incredible catamarans supplied courtesy of a good mate (that I met while living on a yacht). 
Very special thanks to Portland Roads Sailing the Whitsundays for that. 

What advice would you give to people who want to travel more?

To do it. It’s a critical part of healthy human development. 

Is it expensive to live on a yacht? 

It depends on a few things, but compared to living in a house it is way cheaper.
If you want to live on a boat, ask yourself if you want to actually go out into the ocean, or simply live in a marina to save money and try something different.
While the former is of course amazing, it comes at a higher price.
If you are looking at it for purely a way of cutting expenses while you dial your business into a money-making machine, why not live in a beautiful marina on a boat that doesn’t even have a motor or sails!
You can buy a lovely looking boat that you could totally live on for $10k but ofcourse you need to work harder than simply looking at boats online! We went to marinas, met people etc. Our living expenses not including food while we lived in Australia’s most glamorous marina was just 11k per year and that includes water and power!!!
Obviously, if you want to sail or explore the coast/islands, boats can range from being fairly cheap (beware) to expensive, to incredibly expensive.
Our idea was to get something we could afford, live in the marina to cut costs, sail when the weather was good and to set up an amazing remote business. If the ocean is calling you, I would buy a more sea worthy yacht than something you’d get for $10k. I am not a yacht broker and I suggest you do your own research here.

Let’s talk food. How do you manage your groceries on a boat?

While we were away from a marina, it was a case of doing a big shop and making it last. Lots of rationing, air tight storage and cooking simply.
My partner Eve did amazingly at this, as it really is a challenge. But when you have a lot of time, it’s achievable. 

Is there anything you miss about living on land? 

Absolutely. From our time on board, we were able to get our businesses dialled (as we had extremely low overheads and plenty of time) to the point where after a year and a half, we decided to buy a house and have the yacht at the same time.
A house is very easy.
It’s comfortable.
But to grow in life, I feel we need to live just outside of ‘easy and comfortable’. We don’t have to do it forever, but we must do it for a period of time.
What I missed about living on land was actually driving! However, the time spent on the water, getting the remote business dialled, I was able to buy my dream car when I got back to land.
Worth it!

What do you find the most attractive about yacht life? 

The low living costs and the adventure. We have had nights sailing through a million stars in the sky and their millions of reflections on the water.
We have sailed through literally hundreds of butterflies.
We have made friends that genuinely care, to the point where they would risk themselves and their property to keep you safe.
Living on a yacht has given me an incredibly clear perspective on many aspects of life.
When you live in a comfortable house, with all the conveniences of land, you can easily get soft, to the point where you can lose your ability to think for yourself. It’s all too easy to go with the social flow if there is even the slightest threat to your comfort level.
On a yacht you must think for yourself or you get reminded you’re not using your head very quickly.
It allows you to understand what is real danger and what isn’t.
It lets you understand what a real friend is and what isn’t.
It gave me experiences that set me up to do life more on my own terms. 

Do you have any dream destinations for this year?

I’d love to revisit Fraser Island.
As we have a house now, we’re swapping the yacht for an incredible Seadoo Fishpro jet ski.
The ski is nearly four meters long and will allow us to access islands faster and get in closer.
What we would love to do is team up with a few of our mates who have four-wheel drives and explore Fraser Island from the ocean while they explore it from the sand. Then get together each day to create content and have beers!

Do you have any advice for staying motivated and productive? 

To surf when you’re surfing.
One of several chapters of business principles I’ve developed in my upcoming course Remote Business Pro (which will be available through @joelpringle soon) is to work in small bursts on a range of tasks.
When you’re surfing, you just think about that one thing you’re doing at a time.
You give it all of your attention and you’re totally in the moment.
That’s how working should look like.
If you like you’re starting to drift, go do the thing you feel like doing for an hour, then come back and smash your work for as long as you can and stay at least 90% in the pocket of concentration and focus.
I personally work hard on logos for about three hours at a time, then I’ll go do an equally productive thing in another area of my life (anything from chipping away at our kitchen renovation to going to the gym), not have a Netflix break but I’ve been practicing this way of working for a while.
At the start, if you do four hours of solid focused productive work over an eight hour period and literally watch Netflix for the other four, you will get more done that trying to sit through a regular nine to five. 

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