n. pl. id·i·o·syn·cra·sies
1. A structural or behavioral characteristic peculiar to an individual or group.
2. A physiological or temperamental peculiarity.
3. An unusual individual reaction to food or a drug.
If I had to venture a guess, my idiosyncrasy has a lot to do with procrastination and the creative process. Too often I allow myself to look at the clock or the calendar and say; “hey, I still have time” while at the same time I have this nagging feeling that I have some unfinished business somewhere. I think it’s called procrastination, but I’m putting it off until later to look up the definition. .
This always happens when I have an assignment or job that I don’t want to do; it could be for work or for school but it’s even worse when it’s a chore that I don’t want to do for my wife.
I have a deadline, and when I’m first given this task I have all the time in the world. I actually have twice as long as I actually need. There’s the part of my brain that says, “Eric, get it done ahead of time because you know something is going to come up in the end…” but I allow something else to get in the way. There’s always some task that’s “more important.”
Before I do this magazine lay-out in InDesign I first have to clean the basement and get my print shop ready for the eventual day that I get the large media printer that I won’t be able to afford until I’m out of college. I’ll wait and wait while “planning” the whole thing inside my head, then panic when I have the least amount of time possible.
It’s at this stage when I begin to panic and just throw things on the screen hoping for a happy accident. It’s also when I start missing out on details that are important like “by-lines” and finding a suitable font other than the two defaults in the Adobe Creative Suite program.
I have no problem doing work on my own; during the Christmas break a bought a book called “The Creative Process” which has 80 tasks to do to sharpen creative skills. I had the book 4 days and I did one task a day… some of them I’ve been able to reuse in some of my classwork here at MWCC.
The worst enemy of a deadline is the internet; while it’s a great tool to find the information you need it’s also a great way to waste time. There are a lot of humor sites, instant access to the adult material that you used to have to pay for and you took it home in a brown paper bag, and of course Facebook the few other social media sites. It would be hypocrisy if I didn’t also mention blogs… I can’t start a project without reading the ‘necessary blogs’ on this specific topic or that…
One of the things I would like to know about myself is this… who or what could I have been if I didn’t pick up the habit of procrastination. And how come we have a pill for so many other mental conditions except this one.
Tell me about your idiosyncrasy in the realm of Graphic Design or your own profession.