Wednesday, February 2, 2011

tough skin.

Sometimes i'm guilty of needing a push. Sometimes I need to feel like I have failed myself, that I'm not worthy of doing something and that I'll never be able to do something to in fact succeed at whatever it is that I'm trying to do. I constantly feel that I'll never be able to develop a thick skin when it comes to everything but especially when it comes to my work/designs at school. The more I think about it, the more I don't want to develop a thick skin.

In design school or in any design based industry, you're going to be forced to think for yourself. It's not about writing a paper on Greek literature or solving math problems. You're going to have to come up with concept after concept, and once you've thought of something that you believe (in your mind) is original and fantastic, (after going through hundreds of ideas) your next move is to make it come to life. Whether that's in the form of a dress, a painting, a story, a poster, or a mood board. Even with the most simple and quick creative project, the process is similar to ''conceiving' and birthing' your idea and then ultimately putting it up for display and for judgement.

Putting your work up next to all your classmates' and spending 2+ hours analyzing and critiquing each piece and each tiny detail is one of the most stressful things. Every comment is something that should be put inside your brain and kept there for your next project. It's supposed to be a learning experience, and it is. It never gets easy. I've had good critiques and mediocre critiques. I've never had anyone pull my work apart or make me cry but I've wanted to cry a bunch of times. I wanted to cry today. Not because anyone said anything bad (they didn't say anything good either), but because I felt my design didn't completely show how much I tried and how much I want to be there.

What I thought was my 'best' for this particular project, truly wasn't. Though no one said it was bad, I felt like I failed myself. I felt that I didn't deserve to be there and that everyone elses' was so much better. No one had to say it, I just knew it. Hours later, what I've realized is that the pit in my stomach, the tears that were forming in my eyes, the day ruined, and the embarrassment are all signs that I deserve to be there. They're just as much apart of the process as the actual design and they are signs that I didn't fail myself. They're signs that I care about my work and care about getting better. If I had a tough skin, I don't think I would be feeling the need to do 10 times better on my next project. I would have just floated through it.

So maybe being sensitive and having your day ruined because your little design bubble was burst is worth it. Because now I'm hungry to go back and try harder than ever.