Friday, October 28, 2011

Reading between the lines of my chaotic ramblings… (Putting the "I" back in DesIgn)

A few nights ago it occurred to me. Wait let me stop for a moment and give you some back-story. I am a designer, but I used to consider myself an artist. You can ponder that statement for a while. Maybe I'll explain it later on, maybe. Nevertheless I made this blog to challenge myself to do something new. I am forcing myself to figure out how to use it, and stick with it. Wish me luck. But as a bit of a warning to you, if you chose to keep reading on, when I say I have incoherent ramblings I mean it. So where was I? Ah yes…

A few nights ago it occurred to me. How many times do I say, “I want to do that” but never do. How many times do I think of an awesome idea in my head and never bring it to pen and paper? Far to often is the answer. I have failed to realize that I am settling for what needs to be done instead of what can be done. Lately my inspiration is like a caged bird. It sings but never flies. I have lost my motivation and it is time I got it back. 

Since my time as a graphic design student, I have created numerous things that I am proud of but recently I have little to show that I am truly passionate about. I know there are plenty of others that feel the same way. The underlining cause for our condition is? I have come to this conclusion, not enough “i” in “design”. All this time spent reading instructions and mindlessly pushing pixels around like design zombies has made us forget we need to use our own brain instead of eating everyone else’s. Our passion first began from the freedom to create for ourselves. To dive deep in the rabbit hole of our imagination and allow us to see how far it goes.  As we get more professional, it seems as though our hole gets smaller and our restrictions get bigger. We are forced to work for the Red Queen and see less of the Mad Hatter. We need to stop ourselves from becoming stuck making the same bull as everyone instead of making who knows what for us.  

We need to relight that fire under our passion’s ass and understand that if we don’t start creating things for us, whether they are “meaningless” or “minimal”, totally random or completely ridiculous, we are going to lose our ambition, maybe even our minds. In our professional careers we will be producing work that will put limits on our creativity. Don’t get me wrong we need limits. Design has a purpose and we need to be reminded that. But what we don’t need is to suffocate our love of design with classroom assignments and work projects so much so that we forget to design for the sake of design. Stop caging that damn lion before it mauls you to death or dies from domestication.

I don’t know whether I made sense or not. I honestly don’t know if I even made a point. All I know is I feel better about spilling my thoughts out on this page. I just need to keep telling myself:  

I need not to be afraid to fail; I need to be afraid not to try. Stop worrying about the final design and just start designing.