These may be words that come out of my mouth someday in an interview with Filmmaker magazine or Inside the Actor's Studio. I'll say those words right after James Lipton asks me what my favorite swear word is... I have officially received the "best of luck in all of your endeavors" letter from the film and video program at CalArts. I have to admit that I wasn't really expecting that. I was expecting to panic about having to find a way to pay the extremely high tuition costs at that school after having been accepted. Based on the advice of people I've known who have gone to that school or who currently work there, I thought I had a real shot.
Yeah, that might seem a little cocky, sure. I am pretty confident in my abilities, though, and 100% sure of my ambitions and motivations. I also think my work shows at least a little talent. If not, I think the potential is there. It's quite possible that I had just applied too late, applied to the wrong program, expressed too much love for Terry Gilliam or the color blue, or just didn't have the academic recommendations or variety of film work they wanted. Whatever their reasons, I know what I'm not doing in September, now I just have to figure out what I am doing...
Why am I sharing this with the world? Because I learned something valuable in all of this: if you really want to know more about yourself as an artist, apply for an MFA! Even if you don't get in, it's worth the application fee to discover valuable things you may not have known about yourself. I learned so much about myself, my influences, my goals, and my ambitions and desires through writing my "artist's statement," and my "thoughts and influences" and whatnot that I actually still feel more confident than defeated by the rejection. In fact, my personality is such that it makes me more determined to do what I want to do. In the end, all this means to me is that I'm saving $36,000 in tuition this year. That money might be better served as an investment in my own film, anyway.
I share it too because perhaps this could apply to a lot of people in a lot of situations- not just artists seeking MFAs. You might get rejected, but you have to try. So many of us build up walls around ourselves and live in "some day" while the world goes on around us- we don't apply for that job or that scholarship, ask that cute boy out, tell someone we love them, move to that new place, etc. because we feel that a "better time" might come along... So far, the only thing I have gained from that philosophy in my short lifetime has been a feeling of regret. So I'm plowing forward full speed. I'm proud of my rejection.
Just thought I would share that with the inter-sphere, the web-iverse, or what have you. We tend to be critical of ourselves and one another fairly easily, but support and understanding is often a little harder to find. Whoever you are in the world, let your freak flag fly! I don't know why we have to make things so hard on ourselves and on each other, but often times, we do.
In response to one of Lipton's other "10 questions," when he asks "If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates?" My answer will be "yeah, so... sorry about all of that weird shit." :)