A friend showed me a writer/director’s website today and as I checked it out, I noticed this artist made a lot of self-made productions which includes shorts, features, and documentaries. In his biography, he states that he’s been making films since he was 14 and therefore he has been doing this for over a decade. I decide to check out his latest projects, to see how far his growth has become, and instead I became utterly disappointed at what little progress there was.
It is important to say and acknowledge that it’s hard to write and direct a film in the first place and for anybody who actually puts one out there, that is an achievement in itself. But I strongly believe that we must be the harshest critics to our own works and be willing to listen to others who point out critical points. Yes, it’s something we naturally don’t want to hear because after all, creating something in this world is akin to your own baby. You become instinctively defensive when anybody says anything that isn’t a glowing praise. But if we can push aside our pride and let our thoughts have an open, clear channel, we can grow to so much more.
Going back to the film maker, I don’t know the full story and perhaps there is more than meets the eye, but to me, 10 years is a long time. 10 years is more than enough time to not only put your product out there, but to learn from others, to learn from the BEST, to research, to do everything in your power to be better than what you were before. When your growth is not that much different from when you first started in that time period, you are clearly doing something wrong.
I think this can apply to folks that are not film makers, but people who wish to excel in any trade they are in. There is so much beauty in the ability to be humble and to always remind yourself that you can always be better. Even when you think you reached the top, go higher. Be a student of learning always and never stop.
Complacency is for lame suckers.