What I learned in Make it in Design Summer School

If you've been following my journey here on life i design, you know that I am constantly learning, pushing myself, practicing and even failing. I enrolled in a summer school design course through MakeitinDesign.com with the goal of creating new artwork for my licensing portfolio.  I had a huge, aha-moment this week and I felt I had to share what I learned in summer school!

When I enrolled for summer school, I knew we'd be on vacation for the beginning of it.  I knew that I'd be busy with the kids.  I knew it wasn't an ideal time.  When is it an ideal time anyway??!!

So I struggled with the first brief.  I had to create a lace pattern and for the life of me, I couldn't get my s%$t together.  My design wasn't where I expected it to be.  I drew, re-drew and drew some more.  I was frustrated and decided not to submit anything to the gallery that I wasn't 100% proud of.  I dedicated to giving the second brief my biggest effort!!

I was excited to read what we needed to create for the second brief.

A hand lettered quote!!! It was as if this brief was created for me!

But the challenge for me was to create something that was marketable and that I felt still was me.  Something that I liked and was reflective of my "style". I came up with my own saying and started to sketch!

nicki sketching
nicki sketching

So I sketched...

nicki sketch
nicki sketch

and sketched...

IMG_8253
IMG_8253

and sketched some more...

IMG_8252
IMG_8252

I took my drawings to the computer and was stumped!!!

IMG_8254
IMG_8254

I felt that I created two very different pieces of art.  One that I felt was "marketable" and one that I felt was "me".  Where was the happy balance.

Here is where I did something that I normally would never do (thank you my shy-introverted side).

I ASKED FOR HELP!!

I posted a few photos of my designs in a private Facebook group created for the summer school students and I opened myself to opinions, critiques and advice.

I read each and every comment, and looked at my work critically.  Then it hit me!

I missed the mark on what was expected of me.  I was to follow guidelines, create art that met these guidelines and share it.  That's it.

I removed myself from the equation and out came this...

nicki_traikos_int_cb2
nicki_traikos_int_cb2

art that I feel followed the brief well enough, that is reflective of my skill and art that I think would look great on sheets for a boy's bed set!

The moral of this summer school lesson...

when you are struggling with something;

1/ find your tribe of supportive people,

2/ ask for help {!!!},

3/remove yourself from the equation and

4/ look for guidance in the answers you receive!

Whew! That's the end of summer school for me but I'm sure the lessons will continue!