Life, sketchbook

A Bad Day at Work: Surviving Work, Part 3

As I said the other day, all through 2017 I was drawing out my stress. One day, after an incredibly difficult meeting I came back to my desk, and took a few minutes to quietly straighten myself out.

TRANSCRIPT

    01: Soo: Thankful I can draw
    02: Soo: Ah…Instagram…
    03: Instagram post
    04: Soo: Quickly finish this then go home for the next meeting
    05: Soo: Ma? Umm..hmmm
    06: Soo: I’m OK, I’m at work. Such a bad –
    07: Ma: Oh you’re at work? I saw your post on Instagram – I thought something was wrong with Orin! Bye!

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drawing, Life, sketchbook, Work

Surviving work, part 2

It was early 2017 when I first started to use my drawing to deal with work stress.

I was still grumpily trying to understand what my role as a Design Manager should be, and the anteater, as usual, gave his sage advice:

Sometimes all you need is a different perspective on life, like The Principles of Uncertainty by Maira Kalman.

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And I also finished reading M Train by Patti Smith around that time.

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While all this helps momentarily, there’s actually larger causes for work stresses which need to be carefully resolved. But of course, I didn’t know that then…

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drawing, Life, sketchbook, Work

Surviving work

The last two years have been incredible years of growing for me in my professional life. Challenging work, difficult situations, and always the need to build trust from bottom up.

These are some of the earliest drawings from those days:

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What kept me going was the long game, and guiding myself with

Progress, not perfection

which I learnt from this 99u talk by Effie Brown.

I also draw myself out of stress, since drawing is nearly therapy for me. The 2017 and 2018 sketchbooks are filled with “stressy” drawings – as my friend Uli would say – like this one:

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After a while though I got used to it, and learnt how to survive difficult days

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Though our man, the brown boy, did have the last word:

“Ultimately, it’s all about having a good time. Later on if you feel you haven’t enjoyed yourself it’s not worth it.”

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People, sketchbook

Phil

It’s almost a year ago that I became a Design Manager at Adobe. Like everything in my life I took it very seriously and questioned the life out of the role.

On a trip back to the mothership, I met with Phil Clevenger, Design Director. Here’s some advice he had for me, among others, that I immortalized in drawing:

[Phil]

“Do something that keeps you happy everyday.”

And this is one for the dark days, when you’ve done all you can:

“Cut yourself some slack. Let some people go.”

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Life, sketchbook, travels

5 days in California

Inspired by my ten years of inktales, I decided to religiously draw every day. Here are some drawings from a trip I took last week, flying from New Delhi to San Fransisco for work.

I took an Air India flight for the first time, and it wasn’t impressive. However my travel companions were really interesting to draw.

At the immigration counter in San Fransisco, my employer and the software that I work on, always turn out to be magic names, no credit to me 🙂

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And the most surprising of all, the driver of the shuttle that I took from the airport was a native Aramaic speaker.  It sounded like a beautiful language.

I was lucky enough to meet my friend Lekha – our trips overlapped by a few hours. By the fountains we caught up with our lives. Thank you America.

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