Required Blog Post #8: Live Interview and Networking Reflection

THE BIG DAY…

…that everybody was looking forward to is finally over and done with! I cannot be more relieved of that. I was sick to my stomach, stressing the entire night before with all nerves no sleep, and anxious throughout my work day. I left work a few hours early just to be sure that I was on time, prepped, and dressed appropriately. The only mishap had been to print my revised resume. Thank God my second job was down the block from my first and had asked my boss to help me print it out on card stock! I was so thankful for that. I had missed the earlier train that I had originally planned on taking and instead took the following one, still giving me a good 30 minute leeway of time to get there. As I got on the train and sat, I took a deep breath, and felt alleviated. This hour of time on the train is now relaxation time for me to get it together.

The train arrived at Penn Station at 5:53. As ridiculous as it sounds I never experienced Penn Station rush hour during the week. PEOPLE DID NOT MOVE. I have never experienced such a mass mob of people unless I was standing in general admission at a concert. People started shoving and pushing to get by without saying excuse me, and as nice as I think I am as a person, I said ‘fuck it’ to myself and started plowing my way past to get into the airway of stairs to get me out of there!

I then google mapped the address, and of course my Spring service starts shitting on me so I just asked the nearest person where 29th Street was and started pacing down the streets in heels, thank God they were wedge heels so it didn’t hurt as bad as I would think regular heels would.

I never go to the city alone nor am I great with streets. As long as I know which way North is then I’m alright. Surprisingly I learned that if I’m alone in a situation and have no one else to depend on but myself, I force myself to just do it and find a way no matter what. This made me happy.

I find the building without a problem and press the button to the elevator. At this time my iPod said 6:17, as my interview time was 6:30. I wait a few more minutes as I’m peeling my eyes at the number above the elevator anticipating for it to change floors. It doesn’t. I recall Professor Lee saying something about taking the stairs if we were running late. As I recalled this moment, I started panicking in my mind. I see another guy come in seeming calm, and overheard he was going to Anti Anti as well. I wasn’t 100% sure of what to walk in to so I wasn’t sure what he was going to be doing there at first. I half joked to him and said “I’m taking the stairs.”

I open the door to the staircase and start walking up with my heels and backpack weighing me down. After the fourth floor, I was already out of breath. I just kept thinking to myself, “It’s just like the stair master at my gym, it’s just like the stair master at my gym.” By the time I made it to the 12th floor, I realized that I was looking at the wrong time. My iPod was ten minutes faster than my iPhone! It was a sigh of relief but at the same time, wish I had taken the elevator because I arrived to the Anti Anti door the same time as the guy who was going there as well, who turned out to be Alex Merto, Senior Designer at Randomhouse Books. I then joked, “Yeah, I shouldn’t have taken the stairs.” We laughed and both walked in as I realized I was 9 minutes early and the first student there. I took this time to relax and cool off since there was absolutely NO AC on! I definitely shouldn’t have taken the stairs…

The atmosphere was comforting and put me at ease. The studio was small, organized, and pleasant. During the Interview with Graydon Kolk, it flowed more like a conversation. I feel that I am comfortable with interviews and speaking with new people because it is like I am introducing myself again for the first time. I was comfortable with speaking, but I think Graydon made it somewhat painful. I think what I did was introduce my work and waited for a question rather than explaining my entire piece and story behind it. The questioning behind my work then made me nervous. It made me question myself if I even took his advice within his first visitation to class, which I thought I did. He asked me what my specific reasoning or storyline was behind my pieces. I explained what I did and why, but I guess failed to completely explain my entire thought process and story within my pieces.

I learned that I need to come up with a step by step process for each project I strive to accomplish. I need to teach myself a new mechanism in order to understand my growth to progress. Things should be taken in steps, not in full force jumpstart. There is a lot of research that goes into a project. Not just any type of research but research behind the idea, the audience, the product, the problem, the solution, the who, what, when, where, why, and how. Question everything in a project to understand all aspects, measurements and levels it can be taken to. And will it then work? I continue to see that this is still my problem in projects because I will have some sketches and get right into it. I believe this is because I have been used to jumping into projects at my jobs where I’ve been asked to work on a packaging label or poster in a crunched time limit. This is something I need to constantly work on, something’s got to give.

The interview was exactly how I imagined with what would be said between the both of us. I believe everything that we have been taught in class up to this interview along with all of Professor Lee’s resources had been very helpful. Feedback from classmates throughout was also helpful because it gives another set of designer’s eyes to pick up on anything that is not working in the piece.

The networking was my favorite part. I first approached Kate because I thought it was hysterical that her shirt said “satan” on it. It was refreshing to talk to someone who started out as a student similar to me. I explained that I work a lot and that I’m afraid that I make the mistake in working over discovering internships for experience. She explained that she was the same type of person and realized that the students who had that internship experience were the ones who land the job. Kate explained that after two years of her working at a job she hated, she realized it was okay to walk away from something that was no longer growing her as a designer. I took this into consideration of my position. She told me that everywhere after that she has worked was all from networking, attending networking events, designer events, etc. Jobs that she had worked at for a few months she put in her resume as free lance. I explained my fear of hypothetically writing on a resume working at a job for only four months and ended up leaving, sharing that I actually felt the job I am at, with the position of being a ‘graphic designer,’ does not let me totally expose the strengths I have in the field. She said that it would probably look awesome to then explain to a future employer my reason for leaving. If I left a job because it did not challenge me enough as a designer, then it would only make myself look better in the eyes of a hiring manager. I felt a sense of comfort to know that there is at least one other person who understands where I was coming from. My next thought was to now understand what is important to my future.

I have learned a lot these past crazy weeks. Time management is a skill that takes time to be mastered! Practice and touching up on pieces little by little everyday rather than crunched in one day can help branch new ideas daily. I plan to NOT GIVE UP no matter what! It is my last of 6 years at Farmingdale, and this year and class is what defines me. I want to make others as well as myself, proud of everything I do, create, design, speak, and write this year and moving forward. I feel that I have progressed in my work, but not so much in my time management unfortunately. I plan to accomplish this skill. I also plan to find and be able to explain my true meaning and reasoning within every project so that I will be able to answer every question that will be asked about it, for people to understand and resonate with it.

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