More doubt, and why I don’t think I want to be a designer

Today’s morning lecture at university has arisen many feelings of doubt and negativity in me, and I think I am becoming interested in the idea of getting into the video games industry. I still like video games, but the thought of making video games and being a games designer is starting to seem like something I have a decreased interest in or compatibility with.

For the second time I was reminded that all of us who go into designing are not considered artists. We’re expected to make something for someone else, unless you’ve got your own company or possibly if you’re in indie games. If you’re designer, your making designs for someone else, for a demand, and you’ll likely have to get used to people telling you “your designs are shit. change them”, and then you’ll probably get used it and become more like a drone, perhaps never realizing it. That thought alone makes me feel extremely doubtful and even resentful about the path of the designer. If you don’t create for yourself, and for your own vision, then you’re not an artist, and I don’t want to live a life where I stop creating and writing for myself. That’s not even getting past the other fact that the games industry isn’t even about art, or about individual expression. If you think that, then you’re a fool. Games are made for an audience, and there’s a ton of people working on them. Who’s vision are you going to be designing for if you’re in the industry? You’ll be lucky if it’s your own unless you’re running your own company. Half of me is tempted to rip on capitalism because of my sense that it produces such client-oriented models, but I can’t completely rip on it (you probably know why). In general though I have more reason to hate this world because of how group-oriented everything tends to be and individuality is usually shafted to the side in favor of society and the mass client.

Back to the point though. Honestly, I had more creative freedom back in art college, and even they sometimes restricted me, but in retrospect they have restricted me far less than the video games industry ever will. But I don’t feel like I can drop out of my course. It would not only disappoint everyone else but dishonor myself, especially given the short amount of time I have been on this course compared to the time I have left for this course, and I would only end up wasting the money I put into it and the financial support I’ve got and will gain for the other two years. There is also transferring to a more art-related course, but I just know they’d make me do art history again. And besides, it’s not like I didn’t find something good out of the course I’m in (in fact, the games design history lectures are the best part and they’re surprisingly enjoyable). Either way, if I leave the course, especially now, it affects the group I’m in, and I’ll probably end up leaving them with my unfinished business. And you can imagine that might be annoying. That or they get rid of the input I provided. Speaking of the group, I kinda feel like the role I’m taking as a guy who keeps everything in check is not as appreciated as it should be. I feel like I might be seen as a guy who messages people constantly to the detriment of everyone else’s nerves when all I’m trying to do is create some semblance of organization and enhance it for myself. I half-feel like they don’t appreciate that, when they should.

I don’t know who to talk to, I feel like a fraud and it might only be a matter of time before people see, as I increasingly do, that I don’t fit in very well in my course, and I feel like I’m gonna be crushed sooner or later. In general, I don’t know what to do, or how long I can stay in the situation I’m in.

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2 responses to “More doubt, and why I don’t think I want to be a designer

  1. The fact that you’ve recognized this and are mentally preparing for whatever consequences may occur as a result of your choices I think will make it much easier to handle. I made the decision to drop out of school a few years ago, and now I feel it was the best decision I made. At the time, it was scary and the pressure from family and friends made the stress and anxiety of it all so much worse, but now I’m much happier as a result. Good luck on whatever you decide, just follow your gut, those feelings are usually right.

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