10 Reasons your work doesn’t suck, 4 of 10
Reason 4: Your work is being forged in the furnace of experience.
The last thing anyone wants to hear is how many years they’re going to have to work at something to get good. They want that tempting “all-in-one” answer that will teleport them to success. Well, both notions are wrong, actually. You can get better by tomorrow. A little better. You can do it, one layout at a time. The big picture is measured in years, yes. But, there are improvements and advances that happen daily. They’re just harder to see.
Every time you line up those elements, choose another font than the one you used yesterday or look at the photos you have and start thinking about more dynamic crops and placements, you’re improving. Notice I said, “you’re improving”. Whether or not today’s layout is better than yesterday’s is beside the point. Each time you stop to re-evaluate a design choice, you’re identifying new preferences in your mind’s eye. Your instincts are getting sharper. Each time you look at your layouts and think, “Damn, this sucks!”, you’re setting a new standard of evaluation. Creating a new set of rules. This isn’t good enough. Not yet. Not yet. Okay, NOW it works. That’s gold.
Keep banging away at those duds, and sharpen those hawk-eyes. Just acknowledging that you don’t like the way this layout is going is a huge advancement in your journey to becoming a rock-solid, go-to creative machine. You’re getting practice at asking the same questions a 30 year design-veteran asks herself on every project. “Is this the best it can be? Is there an opportunity to take this a level up? I have to live with this one for now, but what can I do on the next one?”
Don’t worry, you’re doing it right. Never stop chasing that dragon. Four down, six more to go…