It was the third week of the Page Layout and Design class. We met on Mondays and Wednesdays from ten to twelve.
The teacher, Ronald Dorfman, asked how we were doing on the assignment, an eight-page brochure.
He stood behind my desk and asked me what I thought of the project. I couldn’t answer him because I was crying.
Perhaps I wouldn’t have cried if I had a good night’s sleep. I woke up that morning at three-thirty, anxious about my assignment. Instead of going back to sleep I watched Lynda.com videos on Adobe InDesign. None of it made sense to me.
I couldn’t figure out how to set up master pages, guidelines, and grids.
It is hard to admit I cried in class. The kind of cry where you can’t talk and your chest is heaving.
When I stopped crying, I asked my teacher to show me how to set up master pages, guidelines, and grids. He kept showing me until I understood and finished the assignment.
Learning something new can be hard no matter what age you are. Two students dropped out of class during this assignment. One was a recent graduate of high school and the other student was a grandmother.
Maybe if they had cried in class they wouldn’t have quit.
“We need never be ashamed of our tears.”
— Charles Dickens, Great Expectations
The last time I did any graphic design was in 1983 when I worked as a graphic designer for The Tokyo Journal, an English language magazine in Tokyo, Japan. All of the design was done by hand. We hand-drew lines with a ruler and an ink pen and the type was typeset at the printers and pasted by hand. Spelling mistakes were cut out with an Exacto knife and the correct letter cut and glued in its place.
Now here I was thirty-two years later, sitting at a computer, learning how to do graphic design.
My teacher, Ronald Dorfman, also had to learn how to use computers when they first came out to revolutionize the graphic design industry. He went from hand-drawing his book covers to designing them with computers. He was an inspiration to not quit and adapt to new technology.
For my last class assignment, I made a ninety-eight-page coloring book with forty hand-drawn cats. The book was formatted in Adobe InDesign using master pages, guidelines, and grids.
The book, Color The Cats — Forty Real Cats From Around the World and Their Stories, was published on Amazon on December 16th, 2015. I had a proof copy to show Mr. Dorfman at my final review.
[share-quote]Learning something new can be hard, but the lessons learned are worth every tear shed.[/share-quote]
Today I start another class, Animation, Art 238.
Hopefully I won’t cry in class.
A Gift For You
For the month of February, I am giving away a PDF of my coloring book for new subscribers.
If you already subscribe, please check your email. I send you the PDF to the coloring book in an email yesterday.
A small thank-you for reading my stories. (smile)
Get your FREE coloring book!
Do you think it is hard to learn something new?
Please tell me in the comments. I would love to hear from you.