Making stuf,f little things I’ve come to understand.

…after many years.

I find it realistic to say that you will only get good at your craft after a minimum of two years of hard practice.

For example: I find it easy to draw, I can crank out five to ten drawings a day.

But quantity does not mean quality.

Of those five to ten drawings, maybe one is really good, the others were just warm-ups.
The one that is really good, I should make it again at least another five times to make it outstanding. Or maybe make a composite. It's valid.

That's the one that should go on the website.

I started posting every little drawing I made, the good, the not so good and the ugly.
It's difficult to contain oneself when making something. You want to show it, you want the accolade, the reassurance.

Creation can never exist alone.

But how did creators manage before the internet?
They weren't obnoxious like we are now, pushing everything online.
They honed their skills. This is why it's fascinating finding the papers of a writer or creator (although little by little there will be less paper to find and only unaccessible hard drives will be left).

In France everyone can be an editor, a master, an artisan

  • Editorial work is important in everything.
  • You shouldn't edit your own work. Get a fresh perspective as soon as possible
  • Don't be hard on yourself, just be honest.

Then comes the question of style and originality

How many years of practice must you have before you find your style?

According to Anna Bond of Rifle Paper Co. it took her two years before being comfortable with the originality and authenticity of her designs.

Everything is valid

Personally, I find the biggest obstacle is my tendency towards "purity". The "do it from scratch" mindset. "To be original".

I understand that everything comes from something else, but for some reason I have no problem accepting this from other people's but not from myself.

Yet with the internet it seems that even before beginning anything, I want to see what other people are doing it and thus begins the war with myself about wanting to do original work but never feeling certain if I'm doing things the way "I'm supposed to".

In these cases, I follow one rule:
"Research less"

If I feel the urge to binge on other people's work, I allow it but I almost clinically monitor my reactions to what I'm watching.
Is it:

  • admiration?
  • curiosity?
  • fascination?
  • wonder?
  • Do I want to send a note of appreciation?
  • Do I want to bookmark, pin, send to my sources of inspiration?

Or… do I feel
* Jealousy
* Misjudgement
* Mockery
* The "Oh my god I will never be as good as…"

By monitoring my reactions, I know when to stop researching and start doing.

Avoid thinking about making a living with what you're currently doing.

It distracts, it makes you think about what others would like.
Just remember: 2 years of practice.

In my next post I will describe why Karl Lagerfeld is someone worth listening to.