Over winter break, I had a project to make a scrap book detailing specific events and experiences people suffered through in the Great Depression. I was not quite thrilled to have a project in regular United States history in addition to a bunch of other homework my AP teachers piled on me (then again, as much as I want to complain… I signed up for it all…). It was one of the last things on my to-do list.
When I got to it, I was pumped up and thought about making it something special. Something that was unique and format it in a way I have never done in a project before– create my own background collages, layer more foreground pictures, find pictures all from SPECIFIC states, and use a variety of colors (mostly varied shades browns, green, and black because I was going for the antique look) and fancy text. The pictures themselves and the facts I included took about four to five hours. What.
At that time, it didn’t really matter, I was satisfied with my work on and it looked pretty cool on my word document…. Weren’t you just waiting for my “big but?” (Uh.. But not butt… although, slightly TMI, but my mother always emphasized my big “butt” whenever I ask for boba. Sorry just had to mention that… I have no idea why…) Back to the anecdote. I printed out my project and glued each page to sheets of construction paper to make the scrapbook. Punched holes in the sides and strung them together with twine. When I took a look at my final product late at night, I was not satisfied. That’s the problem with creativity and the pressure of being graded on a school project. I would’ve been okay if it was not a graded assignment, but when I, personally, have to turn something in and my ideas do not transfer properly into the final product. It’s crushing. The people who assigned the project and are expected to judge and give you a grade for it, don’t see the originality and the effort you put in. I mentioned in the previous blog “rinse, wash, and repeat.” Although several weeks ago I saw it as a completely bland and uninventive, sometimes I think it may save more time, stress, and frustration for school-related projects to tone down the inventiveness, stick with a surefire nice-looking, but recycled format. Save it for the things you make for you. That no matter how it looks, no one will judge it and you know that you put in effort and grew from it. I mean, what’s the point in spending a bunch of time and effort on a little project when your effort at being original and unique doesn’t come through?
A/N: Sorry, that was pretty pessimistic. I know that it’s better to always put forth your efforts, but sometimes when things like sleep, time, and grades are on the line… Certain thresholds are compromised.