I often have difficulty with representations in art, and even more so with brevity, so when we in Writer’s Block Philippines decided that we would create avatars and infographics for ourselves, I found myself in a rather uncomfortable position. I didn’t know how I wanted to look like as an avatar because I often wore too many hats and didn’t know which side of me I wanted to appear; neither was I sure about what to include–and what to leave out!–in an infographic because these things often require a limited number of words. We also engaged in a little exercise about three words or phrases that would summarize our competencies best–again, that was difficult for me to do because I wasn’t exactly sure what I was and how best to capture everything that I do and want to do.
Thanks Heavens for my writing sisters. They laughingly insisted that we develop an avatar that reflected my innate paradoxes, such as my love for the profane (including politics!) and the profound, the fusion of art and technology,and the juxtaposition of hard-core policy and ‘soft’, creative writing such as this. We worked with a brilliant, young illustrator who calls himself Pete Rich, and this was the result:
Of course, my brother laughingly joked that it should have been wider, but I’d like to think of this as a representation of my ideal self: fit, flexible, balanced, and in touch with the things that matter to me. I value my innate contradictions and think they’re an integral part of who I am, so I’m not about to change or hide them just to make a picture look good. Plus, I love the touch of humor on this one. (I can be smart-alecky, too–ask my husband.)
When it came to the infographic, THIS is my current draft. It looks a bit too cluttered, I know, so let’s treat this as a work in progress.
What I’m excited about is to find out how YOU would represent yourself as an avatar if given the chance. You may or may not be able to do it (or pay someone to do it) right away, but do think about how you would like to be represented in a picture or a drawing if given the chance. It will tell you a lot about your self-image, your priorities, and even how you view your life and the world around you.
Next, even just with a stick figure–or using an existing photograph–try to make your own infographic. What witty title/s would you use to describe YOUR own unique set of skills, talents, and characteristics? What aspects of your life would you highlight? What would you lay out in bold, big text? What do you deem to be achievements and/or quirky tidbits that you’d like people to know about you? Again, your infographic will say a lot about how you see yourself plus how you’d like others to see you; think of it as “creative self-reflection.”
To make it more fun, do share your avatars and/or infographics by emailing <email@example.com>. I’ll put up random submissions here so we can show others how you want to depict yourself to the world.
The fun starts now! 🙂