At work I am lucky to manage a small creative team, and expose interns to things they might not learn in school. One of my favourite things is being able to help someone who is struggling through a tough concept or new technology. Sometimes helping is just sharing a small trick I learned when I was an intern (ie: My good friend Tabs!), and sometimes it’s figuring out how to explain something that is second nature to me, but new to my team… Once you’ve removed that roadblock for someone, they not only become more efficient, they are more confident, and have the ability to be more creative. It’s awesome!
Every day I give feedback on our team projects, pushing everyone to do better work; be more detail oriented, get out of their comfort zone, try something new. And even though I’m challenging others everyday, sometimes I forget to challenge myself.
The reason I want to go to FITC in Toronto this year is to challenge myself to create more interactive digital work by exploring technically layered concepts and integrating new technologies. (Translation: Do more things, do cooler things, try new things, fail sometimes)
Teaching others at work reminds me that everyone begins somewhere, and to put your first efforts in front of others is brave and I want to be more brave. When you start something new, you can get lost in the gaps. But I need to remember that getting lost can be a good thing. There will be mistakes (ew) and there will be (great!) success. I hope that this year at FITC I can get lost in the the new uses of familiar technologies, and the ‘I-want-to-make-that’ of new-to-me programs.
Another reason I’d love to attend FITC Toronto is to combat staleness. The design industry is dominated by ‘freshness’ and ‘new’, and it can be a bit (and let’s just keep this in the ‘everyone-feels-this-way-sometimes’ category) draining. As much as I enjoy editing the work of others, I sometimes I catch myself thinking “I would not have thought of something as cool as that”, which scares me (in a good way). It’s amazing to surround myself with creative people because they inspire you and challenge you at the same time.
This is also a reminder that learning never stops, and that I am always hungry to learn new things.
My FITC Women’s Initiative submission was originally a project idea that I created for a past intern named Becca. Over the course of her four month internship we had worked very hard on her hand-lettering and she had made awesome progress… so during her last few days of working, I challenged her to create ‘real lettered’ typography inspired by this post about Danielle Evans that I saw on The Kitchn (See Becca’s project here and here). And so today, in the spirit of challenging myself and trying things for the first time… I tried it too.
And you know what?
It’s not great.
And that’s okay. I tried, I’ll try again, I’ll get better, and I will remember that even though there are a lot of experts out there, everyone is a beginner at something.
Hope to see you all at FITC!