HATe

There are feelings that we hide inside and they keep building up. And when they do, they can either be tamed and transformed into something worthy or they can come out in the worst possible way.

In this post I would like to examine ‘hate’. It has been around for quite some time now but these days I feel like it’s growing stronger. During the past week one of my former teachers got accused of spreading religious ideas during his physics lessons. A long article on the happenings was published in an online magazine. The thing is, none of these accusations were true. People who know that man are aware of that. But the people who hide behind n/a in the name section, the ones wearing the cap of invisibility without grace started to offend him in so many ways in the comment section. The more they kept writing the more it was becoming obvious that they are not aiming at him. They were aiming at themselves, the pandemic, all their own faults, the people who were mean to them, the government. And it’s obvious that these reasons behind being angry apply to us all. It is all about what you do with that frustration.  Observing this situation from the perspective of an outsider made me more aware of what is really going on when someone hates “you”. Especially online.

 “Run” 2021

I brought this subject forward because from my perspective; as an artists, as one of the people who create something to be publicly viewed, we have to learn to defeat this hate and find the way to let it go. I had a chance to conduct a few art-in-public actions. They were published by the local online magazine in my city. Unfortunately, readers had completely different vision of aesthetics than I had, to say the least. I’m not talking about constructive criticism here. It was a big-time hate session. From offending me personally, through suggesting I should pay a fine for damaging the common wealth (although my actions lasted only 24 hours and were completely harmless to the surroundings) to claiming that all artists should quit taking drugs because we lost our minds. And I’m not writing it all here to pity myself or to show how wrong these people who wrote it were.

I’m coming forward with this concept because maybe lately you have heard something hurtful, maybe someone made you question what you do, whether it’s art, writing, dancing or something completely different. But could you easily put a face and a name to that hurtful comment? Did they really say it based on some relevant reasons? Or maybe, just maybe they’re the negative observers and you’re actually the one living your life and trying? Think about that.

Confidence comes with time and experience. I’m still learning that as a young artist and also simply as a person. If we want to do something great, and we want to achieve our goals we need to be prepared for the so-called ‘hate’ be it online or in real life. When we reach the point when it all stays outside and we gain the strength within what we’re doing- this will be the turning point. I really believe that.

Stay healthy,

Stay cool,

Maria

From School to University – The changes and differences to be aware of.

In my lead up to leaving my secondary school (which also acted as my college) to University, I found the transition difficult, particularly in the differences in structure. I know that for many young people, whether going to university or not, it’s a hard experience to go into the unknown. As a person with some experience now, I hope to put your mind at ease, even if not completely, but just a little, during this transition, particularly in this time where nothing really feels right

The Workload can vary 

For people coming out of A-levels, it was a time of having an extreme revision of a lot of content for exams. This may be something you never want to do again because of this. University is similar but not the stereotype of being A levels on high energy. Instead, most of your First-year work will be things you may have covered already and then build-up to the new elements. Lectures are similar to classes with the typical PowerPoint and taking notes, however, there are also seminars later on that are much more suited for you, instead of waiting behind to ask your teacher a question about your work after class. Instead, you have an hour with other people in your course to, not only ask questions but also get other perspectives that may change your mind. In many courses, you don’t have to go in every day, similar to college, but this time is not just to do homework but also do research on your own. In my opinion, University is a perfect space for people who don’t mind doing some extra work. As you work through your modules, it may appear that because you study one thing (or two if doing a joint degree) that you do less, but like college, you will have more substantial work instead to build your understanding. 

  • Teaching

In my experience, self-study was always the main focus at University. The majority of my teachers are good at what they do because they don’t need to specify that they are knowledgable. You already know that they are (partially because half of the books you will read are written by them) but also because they trust you enough that you can answer your own questions and solve your own problems instead of relying on the teacher. This can be one of the hardest things to adjust to, but the way to get over this is through doing your own research. If you simply rely on what your lecturer tells you throughout your degree, you will not get the full experience. Instead, you should gain more experiences. A good way to do this is not just to talk to your lecturers but perhaps reach out to other lecturers in different modules too to gain their view in order to eventually come to your own.

For this reason, most of the best teachers in my university experience acted more like hype-men and give advice rather than lead us to conclusions for the entire time. This transition is hard to get around but it is important for students when going into careers. Just make sure you still ask as many questions as possible.

  • Freedom and looking after yourself

For many people, going to University means freedom you don’t experience being surrounded by your family. It’s almost like a temptation once you get there, your focus is on making friends, making memories and going clubbing because now you can. However, these wants also distract you from the more negative elements of becoming an adult which you may not need to think of in school. One of the examples may be feeding yourself and being away from home. For some, this isn’t a problem but being in a new atmosphere and environment distracts from learning. In college, there is an intensity which people again want to avoid and University, for the most part, can do that, however, this will only happen if you plan. It is important to find in your first year, while things are little more relaxed, a balance between work and social life, such as doing 4 hours of revision a day on the lead up to exams or going out at least for 2 hours a day to see a friend. The main thing is to build a plan that can be challenging at times but also allows there to be some pacing. 

Once you have that, the university may become easier and less pressing on you and your mental health, which is the most important thing to look after.

Uni is a strange experience, to say the least between the so-called real world and childhood but this makes it the time in which you can start to figure out who you are, what you want and start to build it. In this time, it may be hard to know that but uni will continue differently through zoom and if they can continue so can you.

Em x

Em’s tip- It’s okay not to understand who you are as an artist, explore and try new things and don’t feel you need to stick to one thing to be popular, versatility is a good trait to have and being able to adapt is even better.

Also, take your vitamins.

Who are YOU?

MyBest, is constantly growing and we wouldn’t be able to get to where we are now without all of YOU guys. Yes, you, you reading this, you following us on Instagram, you replying to our tweets and you sending us your artworks.

MyBest, was created for people who are passionate, creative, hardworking. We want to inspire you in every way possible and showcase your art.

MyBest, is the place where we want you to know that we’ve all been there, we were all unsure of what next and we all had no idea how to get that dream job, how to make money from our art, if starting a blog or a YouTube chanel is a good idea.

MyBest, was created with you in mind, all of the young artists, experienced artists, people who are thinking about becoming an artist, an art student, someone who is going through a career shift. We value your experience and we want to bring you the content you want to see!

Thanks to our brilliant columnists during past several months we have been able to bring you delicious and beautiful food recipes by our talented Olga, amazing Cerri has been exploring all things Queer, lovely Maria has been sharing her experience as an art student sharing some tips with you and even coming up with a challenge, our fabulous Demi has been talking all things sex and art related, together with Claire we’ve been learning what it truly means to be a writer, Monyca has been giving some tips related to looking for a job and working in the arts, our new residents Mia and Emily have been working extremely hard on articles for their brand new columns. Now it’s time for even more inspiring content from YOU.

This column is created in order to showcase YOU as an artist. Be it an illustrator, animator, writer, film maker, designer, social media manager or a PR. If you work in arts industry we want to hear from you. Tell us your story, show us your work, takes us on a day at work with you.

What to write about? Well… Yourself as an artist! Here are some suggestions:

  1. Start off with: ‘Being an artist to me means…’ and tell us what it truly means to you to do what you do. What makes you tick, what inspires you, what makes you chew on your pencil.
  2. Takes us to your work! Tell us about your day, what do you do, how do you start your day and what is the most exciting part of your day at work?
  3. What made you want to be an artist?

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An Introduction

To start off – the title of this column is technically a little fib. Considering my journey into the mystical and slightly terrifying world of the arts began in my A-level drama class at 16. Shout out to Mrs Carr with the constant energy level of someone who has drank five red bulls at 9am to hype us up.

I wasn’t a person who honestly thought that I might end up going into the arts. Yes, I did like musicals and went to a lot of them but I wouldn’t proclaim myself as a ‘theatre kid’. Although, to my friends dismay, I can talk about why I love Jesus Christ Superstar all day if I was allowed. But hey, art is subjective and my sister thinks it’s just a one big drug trip.

I always thought of the arts, in particular acting in theatre, as just a hobby and not something I would consider having a career in.  So instead I wanted to be…an archaeologist. Mainly because of Indiana Jones. Who doesn’t want to be almost crushed by a massive rolling boulder?

But there is that moment  which I believe all young people may have when they get out of school after GCSEs and they start to wonder what do they really want to do. Would they be successful in chasing a dream they have or would they rather play it safe and get, what is sadly perceived by their elders as ‘a real job’.

 Especially for someone like me who hadn’t really dipped their toe in the arts world. This made the decision all the more intimidating  and caused a lack of confidence. Those two factors hold a lot of people back from what they really want. That is a prominent problem for young people who may be around others who don’t take the arts seriously.

But the next time someone says to you that you won’t be successful in the arts industry or tells you it is not an actual job, I would advise you to say to them – ‘Are you successful in your ‘actual job’ then?’ As if they have a right to judge your career choice, they must be pretty secure in their own jobs.

What is the one thing I have learnt as a young performer? If you decide to go into the arts professionally it is a job and with the same amount of success rate as other occupations in different career circles.

This is where I wholeheartedly agree in the motion that having a degree or any level of schooling will not guarantee you a job in any industry. Your career is what you make of it. Which is not to discourage but instead to say to my young readers that you are able to have as much success as anyone else if you keep working towards your goal. You shouldn’t feel like the arts is a lost cause and I encourage all of you to put yourself out there if you are a young artist, actor, writer, dancer, musician, director, producer and everything in between.

I am now at University in my Second Year- studying theatre and drama and I don’t regret it one bit. I  enjoy my course and learn more and more every day about the industry and add more experiences to my career. Whether it be forming relationships in my drama society or finding the confidence to pursue outer projects such as playwriting and doing performances with outside theatre companies.    I believe I am already paving my way and so will you.

So, to my young readers I will leave you with this as my main introduction. Don’t give up before the race has even started- As your aspirations are valid  and can lead to  great things if you let them.

Em  x

Em’s tip:

Get yourself out there now! Using Instagram to display your work can be used as a great online portfolio if you don’t have access to websites such as Spotlight or Backstage.                                            (Although I would recommend investing in one in the future!)

How did I get here?

Cover
SHOT FROM MY SECOND YEAR FILM, WHICH I MADE BASED OF MONYCA’S POEM (HEY THERE)

I remember my last year in Art High School, and how much I wanted to leave, to go somewhere and “start my life”. I came to England (Farnham to be precise) – to study. I chose an animation course at UCA (University for the Creative Arts) and I was proud of myself, of getting so far.

I was also very anxious… Like many many students from abroad (I can only speak for my fellow EU students as I only know what it feels like from that perspective) I was struggling to find myself in the new reality. How do I get the job, insurance number, flat? Why is everything so expensive why everyone was so hostile to students?

MY GRADUATION WORKS FROM HIGH SCHOOL

My first semester was rather difficult. I was living two towns away from the university and I was casually late for my classes almost everyday. I spent my whole weekends at work, in a small Polish coffee shop which was run by suspicious and a bit odd middle aged man, who called me naughty Agata and Monyca – mean monkey Monyca.
The classes were interesting, but I felt like there was not enough of them to be honest. I did have a lot of work to do, especially considering that I had a part time job as well and spent a lot of time commuting to and from university but I managed to pass to the next year with not so bad grades. I spend my free time meeting new friends and trying to improve my art and English.

SHOT FROM MY FIRST YEAR FILM

I think the second year is worth skipping, because no one really remembers it. It’s sort of like a transition period. However, back then I started to read more about art history, doing first parts of the research for my dissertation and planning my last year film. I feel like the second year is the time of discovering what we are really interested in, to establish who our friends are and making small projects before the stress of third year creeps in.

ANOTHER SHOT FROM THE SECOND YEAR FILM

At first I though I had everything under control. My dissertation was planned, I spent all summer preparing everything I could for my third year film, sketching, reading and resting. But that was a trap. It starts quiet, but then before you realize you wake up at 6am everyday, work in the library till your classes start, then go to work, and after your day job work on your project more because you are always behind on your schedule. It was stressful, but we’ve all managed to finish in time. The dissertation was done, and I was proud of it, especially that I found the topic that I’m really into now – surrealism and uncanny art.

I think it did put me on the right path in a way, after I’ve graduated (with a first, yay!) I’ve got to throw my hat, finish my film, talk with my friends about where the are heading and get to rest a bit before the next steps.

SOME OF THE STORYBOARDS FROM MY LAST FILM

After that I got lost for a bit. I focused on saving up and resting. I’ve focused on finding who I am as an artist (and I’m still very much looking), I’ve been painting, sawing, visiting galleries across England and going for small trips to find inspirations. I’ve got an internship for a bit and applied for entry level jobs. I’ve decided to continue studying and applied for Masters.

Overall, I think it was a good experience. I did grow a lot as a person and artist and I’m happy to start the new adventure – hopefully after this pandemic passes.

🌻🌻🌻Stay home and be safe 🌻🌻🌻 – Agata