What Keeps Me An Optician? [Charlie Blankenship]
How I got into optical was by chance… so what is it that keeps me here? By starting off in the lab at a retail chain I gained a solid basic knowledge of optics to build off of. It didn’t take long after I moved out to the retail floor for me to become fascinated with the whole process involved in making a pair of eyewear, but it wasn’t until I moved to the private practice sector that I really discovered my passion. The thing that I really love doing is creating a custom pair specifically for a patient. From the tame modifications such as adding nosepads or tweaking the shape of a temple on a zyl frame to the wild designs like poker chips or a Battleship™ themed pair.
While corporate did have its benefits (I would have 5 weeks vacation by now!), I don’t know if I would still be an optician had I stayed. I once asked my manager how much we should charge to install some cable temples the patient brought in for their child’s new pair. The response I got? “This is ************, not framecrafters” !?! The ability to work with a guest and design a pair that is exactly what they want is what drives me and I have been fortunate since leaving corporate to work at places that allow me to do so. I even have a title that reflects it now!
Follow Charlie on Twitter: @LabArtisan.