Bits & Pieces?
Fear is like fire.
Controlled, fire and fear can be tremendously beneficial. Fear can help motivate you to work harder. Prod you to keep trying to come up with just one more idea. And it can push you to try new things.
Uncontrolled, it’s destructive — a self saboteur’s greatest weapon.
Fear and creativity.
As a creative, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve let fear get out of control and allowed self-doubt, self-criticism and indecision ruin the chance to do good work.
Putting it into perspective, I don’t rush into burning buildings to save lives. Or deal with the tremendous weight of life-and-death decisions borne by those working in the ER, law enforcement or on the front lines. In advertising, facing fears isn’t facing life or death.
But it is failure or success.
Which is why over the years, I’ve come to realize that learning how to play with fire without getting burned is one of the most important skills a creative needs to master.
And the only way I’ve learned how to get better at managing or controlling fear is through experience. Every failure, I learn something about myself or business or other people or writing or life in general. Every success, I learn a little something more. Little by little, by living and doing, I’ve become better and better at using or ignoring fear.
I think RuPaul says it best:
“I have one thing to say ⎯ you better work.”
If you’re facing the fear of failure.
The fear of mediocrity.
The fear of not being able to come up with a good idea.
The fear of your best being not good enough.
The fear of being too old or too inexperienced or too this or too that.
Work it girl.
Because the only thing that reliably works when facing fear is working through it. Doing something. Making something. Trying something new. Thinking. Moving. Building. Creating. Sometimes you’ll fail. Sometimes you’ll aim high and hit it. But every time you face your fears, you’ll get stronger, more resilient and more resistant to the self-eroding, self-defeating effects of fear.
You’re a superstar. Now do your thing.
Why is it that the projects you enjoy working on most are often the ones you aren’t getting paid for? One theory I have is that it’s self-rewarding. You feel like you are helping someone reach a goal, and more often than not, who ever is on the receiving end is genuinely thrilled with whatever it is you are assisting with. It’s an added bonus when you are a passionate supporter of the people you are helping—like 88Nine Radio Milwaukee.
88Nine is a young station. They have been on the air now for just over four years, but until the beginning of this year, they have never advertised. Their success so far has been mainly from word of mouth, and also simply because there just isn’t another station in the area that plays such a diverse mix of good music. We were tasked with formally introducing the station to the city, but our concept not only introduced 88Nine to Milwaukee, it also introduced several “new” artists to the city. 88.9FM is truly “Where Milwaukee Discovers New Music.”
The billboards and bus shelters ran in numerous rotating locations from January through February (You may find some surviving artwork around the city still). In addition to the outdoor campaign, we were also able to work with our great friends at Aurum Design on producing a theater spot for the station.
In the end, we hope their introduction has been warmly received with excited new listeners. Who knows, maybe we have even inspired some to update their own personal playlists. Our relationship will continue to grow, so look forward to more from us and 88Nine Radio Milwaukee.
It seems an appropriate time to share one of Jigsaw’s most recent projects. The Alverno College Annual Report. It’s a project that has numerous people’s blood, sweat and tears mixed into 75 pages. And let me just remind you, the act of reading a 75 page annual is much easier then designing a 75 page annual.
Each year (okay for only the last 2), I have happily lead a team in creating this fine report. In true Jigsaw style, we assembled our team from both the agency and the client side, and together we have persevered the worst: pagination flow charts, word count comps, copy drafts, headlines, photo selects, color studies, concepts, designs, presentations, numerous rounds of revisions, countless mock ups, last minute financial reports, retouching, production, paper samples, press checks, embossing tests, late nights, early mornings, our lives…
So what makes me want to do it over and over again? Two things: 1. The people. The way they make me laugh, their non-stop passion and commitment, their suggestions, comments, opinions and understanding that in order to make magic, it doesn’t happen alone. 2. Our client. Because over and over again, they challenge, direct, give feedback, dedicate themselves, work hard on our team and often become the cheerleaders in the room because they believe that we can make magic happen.
So take a look at our hard work. It’s beauty. It’s craftsmanship. It’s content, it’s photos Because it truly is a magical piece. It’s received many honors and praise and has successfully helped tell the Alverno College story for 2011. Thanks to everyone who touched this project, especially our team at Alverno, Fox Printing and of course, our lovely Jigsaw team.
If you’d like to see a full copy of the report, let us know, we’ll send you one.
See you next year guys (in 302 days to be exact, but who’s counting?).
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