Remember that little power point presentation I was working on? It went well. 95% well. I think I’m good at fooling people looking and sounding confident, when really, I am a ball of nerves. I have not done public speaking in eons. I used to love it. Hopefully all my school presentations will help me rediscover that love because I was craaaaazy nervous doing this presentation. My heart was racing and I could see it pounding through the front of my shirt. My mouth was so incredibly dry that I actually had to excuse myself part way through my speech to walk back to my desk and drink some water before continuing.
It was also the fact that we had to stick to a 5 minute time limit (I’m a rambler) and we weren’t allowed to say “like” or “um” as fillers.
While I was practicing, I realized that I say “um” all the time. And for the life of me, I could not stop. I think I had a running dialogue in my head while I was delivering the presentation: “Hurry up. You already said that. Skip that part because you’re running out of time. You just said um. Get to the conclusion- that part is really good. You said Um again, stop it.”
As it was my first ever power point, my slides were elementary. White background, black writing and little bits of clip art stuck to each. I hit the arrow and the whole slide appeared. Most people had bits and pieces of their slide appear as they were talking about it. Some were so crafty and artistic, while others were extremely professional.
I have a lot to learn.
But I believe it was my topic choice (as well as the fact that my delivery followed the business communication format). Where everyone answered the question “what inspires your design?” with the visual components of art, photography, design styles, and famous designers.
My answer was philosophy.
I have to say that I was really inspired by some of the other people’s presentations. I scribbled two pages of notes on their ideas and sources.
I am coming to realize that I love everything.
One of our previous assignments was to critique a space as a group of four and then present it to the class. I found this exercise to be extremely negative. The girls in my group were tearing the design apart. There was a lot of “it’s ugly” and “I don’t like it.” While I am not a particularly excited about checker-print (for now, I change my mind all the time), a photo of the cabin’s owner revealed a cute young man in a checkered shirt- clearly, this design had fit the client. And beyond the surfacy details such as the colour (two members of our group said that they detested green, so they rolled their eyes at the green couch), fabric prints, and accessories- I thought the floor plan was pretty brilliant for such an awkward little cabin. Despite the fact that I felt like I was spending the first 20 mins of the exercise carefully defending the design (I don’t think a proper critique involves only a list of everything you hate about it), my group was pretty receptive to my ideas and, in the end, our presentation involved some positive notes on the design.
That little exercise revealed a deeper trait that I had never really thought of: I am always hunting for inspiration. Even in something that I don’t immediately like, I do tend to try to find the redeeming qualities and learn from them.
I am amazed how some students, so early on in their education, already have picked their “school of thought” (minimalism seems to be the most popular).
True to my kindergartens self who stated that “rainbow” was my favourite colour, I like everything, and I find inspiration everywhere. Like yesterday, I was feeling all creative while browsing through the furniture outside our local thrift shop followed by a hunt through the records. But it doesn’t end there- last week, walking past the crisp white linens and dripping chandeliers on the breezy patio at the Fairmont Waterfront downtown also made my heart skip.
My favourite colour is still rainbow, and my design style is everything.