Jun 21, 2011

New page and how I got started with this thing

A few years ago, when I was still a student, I took a course with one of the more distinguished design professors at my art academy. I tried hard but design wasn't one of my strong subjects. It still isn't.

At the end of the semester the professor gave personal evaluations to each of his students. When it was my turn to go in I stepped inside the room with my semesters portfolio and sat down. The professor quickly leafed through my work, a distinct look of non-enthusiasm on his face.

"You know," He asked rhetorically, "What the difference between you and *I can't reveal the name* is?"

The student he mentioned was the class's star pupil

"The difference is that he was exposed to design from a small age and you weren't"

What I understood from this professor, who will remain nameless, is that while I showed some talent, I did not receive enough visual stimulation as a child and as a result wasn't and will never be as good as my classmates who did.

I left that room broken. It's a terrible thing, feeling inferior to others and being told by an authority figure you respect that you are powerless to do anything about it.

During my existential depression faze I thought real hard about how much of a nothing I am. I explored imaginary alternative career paths; from sewage cleaning to grave digging. Obviously, I was too unevolved to be any sort of artist. I even thought of doing the work I feared most - working with my dad in the family bee keeping business. Images of angry bees and my nagging father filled my head. No! I thought. It's better to be a bad artist than doing something else and be miserable.

After the revelation of the fact that I don't want or care to do anything else I started thinking- Alright, I wasn't born in a city and wasn't always surrounded by designed signs and museums... ok. What was I surrounded with? After all, I wasn't walking around with my eyes closed all my life.

Slowly, it dawned on me, that what I was exposed to from a young age was nature. Trees, grass, fields; I was always playing or running through them. And the piece of nature I was most intimately acquainted with was - the honey bee. My grandfather and  my parents ran a bee keeping business. I was too good to want to help out with it and went off to art school.

Slowly the idea began to form. I wanted to do something with bees. After a while, my background in martial arts led me to the current direction.

When I finished my studies, my final project was character and set designs for an animated film about samurai bees. My old professor was there. He liked it but he told me I didn't space the prints on the wall properly. I guess I'm not a designer at heart. But I didn't care anymore. I learned a little something about who I am and what I want to do.

Here are some of the works I presented as part of my final project:

This final project turned out to be just the beginning. I wanted to know the story of these characters so I wrote it and now I'm drawing it.

There's probably some really obvious moral to all of this. So I think there's no need to point it out. I think I'll just continue working on my picture story.


  1. כל כך הזדהתי עם מה שכתבת (אני מתנסחת גרוע באנגלית ולכן התגובה בעברית) אני חושבת שמה שקשה בלקבל תגובות על יצירות שאתה יוצר הוא שאתה תמיד מביא יחד עם היצירה חלק מהנשמה שלך לשיפוט, לכן לא הלכתי ללמוד אומנות. למרות זאת כשלונות עורבים בכל פינה וגם במקצועות אקדמאים אחרים יצא לי לשאול את עצמי אם גידול ילדים כקריירה זו אופציה, אחרי ששרפתי באותו יום את האוכל שלי הבנתי שלא.
    זה מעורר השראה לקרוא על מי שהתמש בכשלון לכעורה כמדרגה לשלב הבא בהתפתחות ובהגדרה העצמית שלו.
    הפרוייקט מדהים, אבל בטח חוץ מהפרופסור הזה, שמעת זאת מפי רבים.

  2. Helena - Thank you very much. You're very right; Failure and criticism are part of everyone's life, not just artists. I think it's important to learn how not to take things too personally and grow from every experience you have, especially the bad ones. I'm sure that after you burned your food you learned what not to do next time. That's valuable experience... Don't give up and cook the same thing again. I'm sure the result will be better the second time.

    It's like that song says: "If at first you don't succeed, pick yourself up and try again."


  3. Great post man.
    I really like the finals project images, I don't think I've seen these before.


  4. Thanks Mr. Dave!
    Glad you like it.

    Hope you are HF with your project and not playing too much starcraft... I hear that game is addictive! ;)