Yeah I know the title is a cliche but I just couldn’t help it. Everyone could be a little better, but the thing is that some people don’t even try.

Getting better

Meet John. John is one of my acquaintance, I know him for awhile and he’s a fellow designer who works for a company that’s developing software products.

John works for more than 10 years for that company. He started as a graphic designer and he’s still devoted to crafting pixels for one of the company’s most successful products. He has lots to do, never gets bored, the software product he’s working on is huge and he’s responsible for a very large icon set used by that product.

I know designing icons can be sometimes painful, you can’t always express your thoughts using 16x16, 32x32 or 64x64 pixels. But John is giving his all for this to happen and he’s succeeding most of times.

So I met him the other day and after a little chit chat he showed me some his latest work, mostly icons stuff. Some of them were good, but most of them weren’t quite pixel-perfect and were lacking that ‘something’. Maybe something like this.

Still, I worried about being too harsh:

Wow man, that’s great! You should grab some of your work and try to share it on Dribbble, Behance or something.

Then, suddenly, while he was staring at me:

But why?

I had a shocker:

“But why?” What do you mean, why?!

I tried to explain a bit what’s obvious, that it’s mainly about sharing work and getting feedback. That’s is about getting better and better. In vain. I wasn’t able to convince him, I failed miserably and the only answer I got from him was that he didn’t feel like he should be doing that. Just because.

We changed subject but I got sad, no… I got mad. I wasn’t convincing enough.

I wasn’t getting it for the moment, but I guess that when struggling with repetitive tasks everyday, somewhere in the process, he lost one of the most important things: the passion, the passion and the desire to improve and learn new stuff.

We should all try to be just a little better.