When I graduated from art school in 2011 there was no way for me to have accurately anticipate the amount of rejection that was in store for me. My first year out of college easily goes down as one of the most difficult years I've experienced thus far. I struggled a lot with never hearing back from many of my dream studios of employment as well as constantly receiving rejection emails from places within and outside of the animation/ VFX industry. I was constantly attending networking events with hopes of connecting with future employers. While I learned a lot from that and made great professional and friendship connections it did not take long for the self defeating thoughts to become the norm. At the end of 2012 I became tired of my circumstances and often temporary opportunities. I turned to motivational speakers, meditations and ultimately a journey of self love and understanding. Through this and the help of family and friends I gained the knowledge and resources I needed to get myself out of the rejection rut that I accepted for myself.
Fast forward to now, the rejection emails have not slowed down (ok maybe a bit. I'm way more selective of where I apply to). I definitely do not take it personally anymore. I know I am qualified for every position I apply to. It is with perspective that I am able to look back and see how the years of rejection actually spearheaded the direction that I am taking in my career today. I can now understand how being rejected has motivated me to create my own opportunities and try new endeavors. I created tote bags (silk screened and hand painted) I experimented with craft making, taken online courses as well as enrolled in languages classes, launched a podcast and most importantly finally became consistent with blogging on here as well as traveled to many places and attended events on both coasts. All things that (I believe) I would not have been able to venture into if I had been offered and accepted a position within in a studio sooner.
Of course it is not my goal to continue being rejected from my future employers but it is my goal to constantly grow as an artist and as an individual. So, if for right now rejection motivates me to step outside of my comfort zone then so be it! I know I'm heading the right way regardless!
Tell me, how has rejection directed your life?