Just a thought

on Life  

Sometimes I feel frustrated with my inability to bring to life what I see in my head – lately it’s been cooking and calligraphy where I feel like I’m falling short. But then I remember that just a year ago I might not have even dared attempt the ambitious projects that I do now, and I would have looked at the level I’m at now with admiration. I wonder what the me of a few years ago, or longer, would think of where I’m at now?

The me of a year ago would happy with how our unit (which we had just bought) is shaping up, and pleased with my new calligraphy and food photography skills.

The me of two years ago would probably be a bit sad about me giving up freelancing, but excited that our big Europe trip went well and that we managed to buy a place back home afterwards.

The me of five years ago, having just moved across the country with The Boy, would be happy to know we’re now married and going strong.

The me of ten years ago, at the beginning of an engineering degree and feeling utterly unhappy about it, would be extremely relieved to hear that after much thought I gave it up for a successful career in digital design (and didn’t disappoint my parents too much in the process).

The me of twenty years ago would be disappointed that I’m not still drawing dinosaurs (I will do my best to make you proud, 9 year old Chisa!).

I’m sure it wouldn’t all be good – each past me would probably look at the next and be a bit taken aback at the weight gain, and the ambitious, over-achieving me of senior highschool might see leaving engineering as a failure rather than a triumph. But most of us don’t know what’s going to be the best for us in the future.

P.S. I’ve revived my old portfolio site, this time as mainly a blog to write about my experiences with design, calligraphy, lettering and illustration. If you’re interested in those things, please go take a look at teresawatts.com :)

4 notes

  1. Hey Teresa! I think a lot of people—especially creatives—have been exactly where you are. Most of us are horribly hard on ourselves, complete perfectionists and textbook over-analysers. I’m pretty much like you, and at times my fear of not getting things right first go deters me from attempting something altogether (including copperplate calligraphy, :O). But as life continues to show us—nothing is ever really a failure. It’s been so great to follow your journey throughout the years. I look forward to seeing everything that follows. :)

  2. Oh Teresa… you and my husband should talk! He’s never happy with anything he does (I think I’ve mentioned to you before that he’s an animator/illustrator and reluctant graphic designer) and even when I think he’s perfected it, he still constantly flips back and forth between edits… argh! I guess that’s what makes creative people so good at what they do; it’s the constant self-criticism, aspiration to ‘do better’, reflective analysis and search for further inspiration. I am so glad that you’re in a good place in your career though, despite ups and downs! I love the timeline you’ve provided. Haha… I can see myself in some of those points (although I left law instead of engineering!). I often think I’ve failed to achieve the creativity that I wanted to but it’s nice to reflect back and see the worth (or ‘silver linings’) in each step that’s been taken! You’re amazing, love your portfolio… it’s exciting to think where you’ll be in the next couple of years! xx

    1. Haha I think your husband and I could definitely relate! I’ve had to learn to make do with 90% perfect, but it stills tears me up to put something less than perfect out there – even if no one else really cares or notices!

      I’m glad you found a career that suits you better than law – my husband ended up leaving it for teaching, which he’s a lot happier in. Looking back, I think the decisions I purposefully made tend to come off a lot better than the ones where I went along with other people’s expectations of me.

      Thanks for dropping by, it’s always so nice to hear from people I admire! I’m excited to see where your blog and writing takes you as well :)

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