My dad is a big softie. He worked in IT for the bulk of his career, and donned all the trappings of curmudgeon-dom to appear to be the biggest, baddest administrator possible. When you are working within the secondary school system with a lot of impressionable youngsters, this approach tends to work well. But what he didn’t realize is that having a Fearless Leader plushie in his office window and wearing a tee emblazoned with “But What I Really Want to Do is Direct” just made him all the more endearing, sweet, and hapless to those who knew and loved him best (okay, mainly, my mom and myself).
But I digress. My dad’s said tee shirt both inspired the title of this post as well as some recent soul-searching. Not the kind of soul-searching that led me to pack up from my office job and fly off to India to get in touch with my spiritual self, but the kind that propelled me to ask myself, “But what do I *REALLY* want to do with myself?” This answer has always been there, but muddled and mired at times. It comes through insidiously when I repress it—fretting over the perfect curation of art on a wall; balking over choosing the ‘right’ white; delaying the production of a logo because the placement is slightly off—and magically when I nurture it. Recently, I realized I was the calmest I had been in days when I was sketching up my designs for ModCloth’s ‘Make the Cut’ contest. I just can’t help designing—on paper; in my surroundings; my very identity!
The above are my two favorite sketches—while I have no illusions that I have any chance of my submissions being chosen among those of Parsons grads and bona fide designers, the process of merely making and imagining how those two dresses would look and feel in fabric (cotton blend, peachy chevron! forest-striped canvas! midnight blue velvet bows and lace!) was an illustrative endeavor that indicated what I’ve always really wanted to do—design—is always just a pencil and a few markers away.