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October 27, 2016

I just had a moment of clarity, you know, I woke up. It’s like… you know when you have an orgasm on your own?  You know, you’re sort of lying on the sofa watching some porn movie you bought on a drunken lonely night in Soho, and you’re lying there and everything’s going really great, you’re getting totally turned on by these absurdly graphic images, everything seems so right, and suddenly – phht! Bingo! You wake up. And you’re lying there sweating, desperately looking for the tissue which you know is still in your pocket, and the remote control which is somewhere on the floor, and it’s like walking in on yourself, you know? It’s just like “What’re you doing?” That’s how I felt tonight feeling my heart miss a beat every time the door opened. “What the fuck are you doing?” —Tim Beasley, Spaced

 

Hey all! I’ve been busy with class and such, but now that I have a little bit of free time to write freely I think I will. I’ll let you know how the semester is going…IT SUCKS! Okay. Well, certain aspects are great, but others…not so much. Let’s start off with the great: I’m going to class full time to finish off this degree and to flip my anxiety off. Now let’s get into the not-so=great because…hooboy! There’s quite a list.

To start I’m not much of a physical artist or designer. My wheelhouse is in the computer-space so already I’m at a disadvantage because I lack the requisite skill with physical materials to do and a lot of it just stems from not having the best of control over my left hand so I’ve just never tried. Another: it’s my fault for not having the proper materials for the first month due to being broke. So I made do with what I had and bought stuff piecemeal.

Now to the actual classes…they’re fine, I suppose, except I don’t feel like I know what I’m doing more often than I’d like to admit. I didn’t go to one of my drawing classes because I felt like I didn’t know what was expected of me and my anxiety took control and I’m still paying for that stunt. I eventually found my footing with the still life projects and I guess I’ve done okay. But still…feels like it’s never good enough. We had a stippling drawing and I thought it turned out great. I thought, “Finally! On top of things!” Nope! It wasn’t pushed far enough so it was more of a dark ‘gray’ and the objects disappeared. I was pretty fecking proud of that drawing, too.

I think the biggest theme of this semester is thus: Never good enough. And the feeling flows both ways, too. I mean, I feel like what I do is not good enough. That it sucks. That I’m wasting my time. Granted, every creative person on Earth feels that way, but in this case it’s like taking a cold bath with thousands of nails and each time I try to wade out of it I always get jabbed or scraped by a nail because in the end, what I’m doing is never good enough. It’s never enough. I’m taking color theory, drawing, history of art, and digital photography. I know they tell you to get out of your comfort zone, but again: bathing in ice cold water with thousands of nails. I’m not good at drawing, I don’t do color aid paper or painting, and I most certainly am not the best photographer.

And I know they don’t demand perfection since these are lower tier classes in the grand scheme of my degree. But I just don’t feel prepared and when I do feel like I’ve got things under control, I really don’t. Maybe it’s because I’m having a bad week or because my girlfriend is sick, but this week is not my week. I feel terrible about everything and I feel like I’m wasting my time. I feel like a fraud. Yeah, again: everyone gets those, but it’s the discomfort of all of these things at once that make me question myself and my own mental health.  I had an anxiety attack before I left my drawing class and that just put my week on a downward swing.

So I take a lot of motion shots of my girlfriend’s nephews because they can’t stand still and I needed to capture motion with shutter speed control. The pictures really came out well and I was proud of them and managed to do the work necessary, I canvassed them, I selected the good shots and….nope. Didn’t canvas them correctly. I didn’t include the shutter speed value. I think what finally broke my dam from barely restrained melancholy to out and out melancholy was when my professor chastised me for not including the shutter speed value and I flattened all of my pieces and not just the ones for print. So I had to re-do them, but it was the way she put it that just crushed me.  She said it’s like I’m not even paying attention and I’ll admit I do have my lapses where I don’t pay attention and the first time missing the canvassing on the first two projects was my fault.

I didn’t read the project handout fully and as I’m constantly in a…slightly anxious state by the time I get to that class, I just skim them and make sure I have the correct shots. I’m not even mad at her. I’m mad at myself and constantly ask, “What the fuck am I doing here?” I tried to articulate to her why I miss stuff, and while she sees the class as kind of relaxing–I don’t. And it has nothing to do with her or the students or anything else. It’s just that by the time the end of my week rolls around I’ve been through so many anxiety-inducing experiences that I just see this class as the last hurdle I need to go through and then I’m home and safe and my weekend begins where I can relax somewhat and not face those situations that minutiae like putting a shutter speed number on my canvas doesn’t really factor into my equation. I’m just ready for the class to end so I can stop seeing my inadequacies on display that I will do my work but forget details like that.

I hate that I feel this way and I had such high hopes for this semester but each week has felt like sinking a little bit more into the swamp of sadness. So much so that I stress eat to compensate and justify it by saying I walk a lot on campus–which I do, but it doesn’t really justify eating more. It’s sad that the only class I ever feel remotely alive in is my history of art class. The rest I just sort of feel like I’m drifting through and eagerly awaiting them to be over so I can be done with this whole charade of me being creative at all or even good at anything in this field. I feel like a fuck-up and wonder why I was even wanting to be a graphic designer to begin with. Oi..I need a drink.

 

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