331: Leaning Into Your Weird with Andy J. Pizza

331: Leaning Into Your Weird with Andy J. Pizza

Have you tried to be normal and repress your ADHD instead of leaning into your weird? Listen as Eric and his guest, Andy J. Pizza, discuss leaning into neurodiversity, a creative approach to your career path, win because of your weird not in spite of it, and much more on this episode of ADHD reWired.

Andy is an American illustrator, podcaster, and public speaker; his explosive color-drenched illustrations have brought hope and smiles to clients like The New York Times, YouTube, and Warby Parker. He is the founder of the Creative Pep Talk podcast, which does what it says on the tin and the author of the book Creative Pep Talk.

Andy shares his ADHD story, the start of his illustrating career, and the recession that almost took it all away. He talks about sending some work to Nickelodeon, the response he got, and the work it took to hone his craft and the jobs that built his freelance career. Andy also speaks about Color Me Blank; collaborative art shows that he took part in with giant markers that allowed everyone to color on blank paper.

If you see people like you doing things you didn’t know you could do, it will unlock something in your brain. Listen as Andy shares about knowing he could be a successful illustrator because he saw people just like himself doing it. Andy also speaks about how he finishes projects by making everything he has to do, something he wants to do. Andy is a very colorful character with an engaging tone that you won’t want to miss.

You’ll learn:

  • [02:04] Welcome to the show, Andy!
  • [04:57] Andy shares his ADHD story.
  • [06:13] Andy speaks about his mom and the fact that she was never around.
  • [09:48] He discovered illustration in high school and realized the path he wanted to take.
  • [12:22] Eric speaks about trying to refinance his house, and the challenge it is when you are self-employed.
  • [19:34] Andy shares his secret sauce and why he has a puppet sitting behind him.
  • [21:10] He speaks about going to college to find his style.
  • [22:30] Andy talks about his indie rock coloring book that kicked off his career.
  • [23:17] He shares the trials he had during the recession and getting a job.
  • [26:10] Andy discusses an opportunity to work with Nickelodeon.
  • [27:53] Andy says that his wife stood with him during the bad times and made it through.
  • [29:04] What ended up happening with the Nickelodeon gig?
  • [31:08] Andy speaks about a collaborative art show called Color Me Blank.
  • [34:32] Andy discusses doing more personal projects and being asked to take the Color Me Blank project on the road.
  • [35:15] He was asked to do more illustrations for Nickelodeon, which built his freelance career.
  • [36:53] If you see people like you doing things you didn’t know you could do, it will unlock something in your brain.
  • [39:08] Relationships, in general, are not about the other person; they are about how the other person reflects you.
  • [43:30] Andy speaks about aliens and what he thinks about neurodiverse people.
  • [46:08] The industrial revolution system was about maximizing the average so we can become interchangeable parts.
  • [49:32] Listen as Andy shares how he finishes his projects.
  • [51:10] Andy says that he went into his podcast, knowing that he needed to do it long enough to get good at it and long enough for people to hear it.
  • [53:08] Andy has encouragement for anyone starting a podcast.
  • [55:25] Andy shares his take-home message for the listeners.
  • [57:06] Thank you for being on the show!
  • [58:05] If you are a regular listener, consider becoming a patron click on our Patreon tap at

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