Designer Diary: Lost Identities (Post #01)

Creativity. A word that has quite literally lost its charm in this digital age of arts. The once exclusive identity given to people known to the community as artists has now found numerous disguise. People are now designers, illustrators, painters, doodlers etc. All have almost different approach, exploring different fronts. But the true question is, is the artwork they are generating genuine and original?

Working for your own and working for some organization are two completely different ways to portray your aesthetics and creativity. I work not from my mind but heart. Self-devotion towards a project makes it unique, standing out from the rest and foremost it would be something you would love to do, that would please you not just today but in the later years when you pick up your sketchbook and look through the hard work, strain and time that you have put in it. Originality and genuineness should be the main course for any art related student or professional.

I have never worked for anyone else. Not until I joined an industry recently. It’s too glamorous, not the kind involving beautiful models in extreme spot lights, but glam in the sense that you get to work for the top notch international brands like Tommy Hilfiger, Zara, Vera Wang and even Ikea, PotteryBarn etc.As a designer, it’s too tempting to even being remotely related to the names. Working for a big brand is like a dream job for any designer. I get goose bumps whenever I think of it like that. But on a very humble ground, working at a studio at a textile mill in Karachi is not at all fun. You lose a lot of stuff that you love. That you find peace in doing. You end up going to bed early and skip doing the side-projects that you believe as you’re true identity. As a whole life becomes really tough.

We are called creatives, but while working for someone else, a part of you gets lost within the requirements of the customer that you work for. I might be wrong here as creativity, as a designer, is not what you desire, but what the customers love to buy. We may infuse our personal style within the given framework, but it’s not that easy to satisfy both ways.

One of the factors controlling the creativity bar is the timeframe. The “ifs & buts” are the last thing senior management wants to hear from you. Time and Creativity are inversely related. At least that’s what I have gathered in the past few years. Any outstanding work of arts needs complete indulgence in that subject. Yes the “eleventh hour” work is sometimes better than any of the stuff that you have been working on, on that particular subject, but that happens rarely. Especially it doesn’t happen in the professional world. You have to manage the time or else you would end up embarrassing yourself.

In the end I miss how I used to work. Because at the place, creativity is not what your inspirations are and what your approach towards designing is, but the amount of customer-centric designs you can deliver within the given time, no matter how gross and how Shutterstocked they might be. Sorry to say but creativity has lost its meaning for them. I’m still trying to grab a cane and save myself from the abyss of these lost identities….Image