2 min read

The box of insecurities

The box of insecurities

This doesn't sound like me,
But I'm not a painter. Why should I paint?
This song turned out quite Pop. Can I make it sound more punk?
I would never put my poems in my portfolio. I'm a designer it doesn't match.
If I share this new experiment, my audience will get confused.

If you are a creative mind like me, you came across similar thoughts yourself. Feeling like a victim of the results of your work. We build something, and in the end, we don't know what to do with it. Not because we think it has no value but because it ''doesn't match'' our previous work.

Then we find ourselves tweaking that piece of art we created to make it fit in our box. We try to change its identity, so it rhymes with our work, or even worse, we let it sit on the shelf and never share it with the world. Not sharing the work by decision is perfectly fine, but not doing it because we feel it doesn't sound like us, it's frustrating. Then editing the piece feels like the best way to proceed, and so we follow.

Why is it so important that it fits in our box? Why bother making it rhyme with my work? What are the consequences of editing that piece?

The times I've felt the need to edit my work to rhyme with me usually come from insecurity. I think about the impact that would have on my identity as a professional. Am I a designer, or am I a writer, am I a cartoonist? The identity crisis starts and opens doors in our minds that are dangerous to enter without being adequately prepared. The easy reaction to this is to make that song fit my designer career identity. Wait, what did you just say?

Creating Frankensteins that people will never understand harms the piece we just created. If that Pop song you wrote is great, you like it and have the power to connect with people. That's the reason you wrote it in the first place, right? So why deprive people of that experience? Is our identity worth it? Here is where I question if we can separate the piece of art from the author.

I believe we can overcome our creative insecurities with constant practice of letting our art be. Allowing it to have its stand-alone identity to get the message across. To best serve and meet its purpose instead of forcing it to our box. I'm confident eventually, we will realize everything we make has our natural essence. After all, our art, once it is out, is not ours anymore.