The Freelance Issue No.22 // being self-taught
I studied media design, yes, but I have learned so much more about design ever since I decided to get back into it a few years ago whenever I started my blog. And I feel so much more complete since I got back into design, drawing, writing…before I felt so incomplete, like an essential part of my life had been missing. Of course I learned quite a lot back in school but ever since I started teaching myself I learned a whole lot more. Especially that I am capable to learn pretty much everything I want to learn and that I am interested in and believe that truly is an amazing feeling.
Back in the days I always thought I needed someone like a mentor who can teach me things or explain them to me but even whenever I had people doing it or signing up for live courses I felt some inner stagnation from my side quite rapidly. Then I started to learn online; through taking a few courses that I could to in my own speed and also a lot through observation and just old plain trial and error and that is what got me the furthest. So even though I have the formal educational design background being self-taught is quite my thing, especially since it was not any different back when studying design. We were told just to do something whenever it came to project work but we were in most cases not really told what to do, so it was more like ‘hey students, figure it out for yourself’ and I guess I can say I just continued my own education where it stopped only with the difference of not having any professors in the background and no pressure with deadlines. But the teaching yourself learning style stayed the same, just a lot more relaxed and fun.
Next thing I will do is to teach myself the craft of jewelry design and I can’t wait to learn since I had been interested in jewelry design since I was in high school. I can’t wait to get crafty, to learn about working with different materials, how to source them sustainably, to set up my own work bench in the studio and just to learn something new that I always wanted to learn before anyways. It is truly amazing how much we can learn these days from home thanks to the internet. It gives us so many possibilities and I think this is just great.
In the past I thought I needed to rely on mentors or people who tell me how to do things because I underestimated myself and my capabilities and I am so grateful and happy that this is not the case anymore and that I realised that I can get pretty much everything done by myself that I want and that is important to me.
Teaching yourself is a great thing but having good teachers is also very precious. When you are ready the teacher appears - and that can be in different forms. It can be a person, a book, a course, good old trial and error, so many possibilities. As long as we are willing to learn and to accept the teaching, it can bring us really far.