I graduated one and a half months ago and it has been such a ride since then. I honestly haven’t even had the time to fully process everything that has happened yet. All I remember was that Grad Show was the hardest I’ve ever worked (mentally and physically) for three days straight. It was a constant back and forth from my home, school, and the convention center while lugging around supplies and tools. I didn’t really tell anyone this, but the reason I declined all offers of help with preparing my wall was because I simply love the challenge. Throughout my life I have always had help whether I wanted it or not because I’m seen as frail, small, and just a child. The only time I really feel fully in control of my own life was through my creations and how it was presented. I wanted every part of my wall to be done alone to prove to myself and to others that I am more than capable of doing things alone. Looking back at my wall when it was completed was the best feeling I’ve ever felt. It truly did feel like my four years at ArtCenter had paid off. Not only did I improve SIGNIFICANTLY illustration-wise, I’ve also learned major life lessons relating to time management, relationships, eagerness to learn, execution, presentation skills, perseverance and so so so many more things I can bring with me. However many regrets I may have about my choices made during school, I know my time at ArtCenter was worth it.
Three days after my graduation show, I got on a 14-hour plane ride to Taiwan for three weeks(I will make a whole new post for this). I had to e-mail back all the offers I received from employers to tell them that I would have to hold off on interviews or projects until then. When I came back on to LA on a Monday night, I vividly remember running around the house unpacking my luggage and organizing the mountain of stationary I had purchased in Taiwan. I ended up sleeping at 3am and when I woke up at 7am, the first thought in my head was, “Crap. I need to find a job. How the hell do I find a job?”. Yes, I do curse a lot in my head. I jumped up and immediately started to e-mail back the employers from Grad Show. One by one they were saying that the jobs were fulfilled already and I was getting more and more nervous about that student debt racking up. Around 10 am I received my last offer e-mail and scheduled an interview for a full-time position the same day….at 2pm. I was very jet lagged and very surprised to say the least. Usually I never believe that opportunities like this would fly my way. Mixing that with my anxiety, I would start to make up a hundred reasons why I couldn’t make it to the interview. At a certain point in my life, I learned to cut off those thoughts after the 10th reason and just say fuck it, what is there to lose? So ever since then I’ve been working a whole 5 days a week for 8 hours a day and honestly have been loving it so far.
I think the biggest struggle for me right now is to figure out what’s next. I’ve been too tired and creatively drained for so long that my personal art has kind of stalled. The only things I can manage to paint are flowers. I can see how after people obtain a full time job, they get too comfortable where they are and stop growing in their own passions.
The painting above was done a day before my flight to Taiwan and has been the last painting that I felt happy about making. Hopefully I will get used to adulting and have my creative streak back soon!