Why embracing equity matters to me as a young creative – both in terms of establishing my voice and reflecting on the world as I see and experience it.
By Ruth Burotte, Senior Design Associate
When you’re young, you have expectations placed on you. Being told what to do, where to go, and how to get there. Next thing you know, you are already walking across the stage getting your diploma and everything hits. I remember getting advice from my professor in art school that really turned things around for me. He said “the difference between an art student and an artist, is that a student always gets prompted into making art like an assignment, while an artist just makes for art’s sake. There will be a time when no one is there to tell you what to do next.” I think every young creative will reach that conclusion and that is when you will realize that you need to break the norms.
It always feels intimidating at first. You start to feel doubt and then the flow of imposter syndrome kicks in. But I know that I spent many countless hours working in the shadows, without an audience, so that I could shine.
But it’s not about getting a seat at “the table” or getting that “cosign,” it’s about letting your story be heard, highlight yourself through whatever creative avenue you have, and encouraging others to share too.
Being a woman is hard right now for obvious reasons, but as an artist, I have always been acutely aware of the importance of equity in the creative industry. Everyone has style. We take ideas and concepts inspired by our backgrounds to bring new perspectives. From where you’re born, what places you hang out with your friends, the culture and local scenes that vary from city to city, all of it makes up your view. It is through the eyes of your unique upbringing that becomes your strength. We are entering a new era soon, an era of creatives entering the workforce that is aware of the value we can bring. Equity is not just a buzzword or a trendy topic of conversation; it is a fundamental necessity for anyone who wants to create meaningful work and make a lasting impact on the world, it is essential for establishing the voices that circulate our day-to-day. It may not feel like it, but young creatives nowadays are shining a light on the realities of daily life. With creativity, we are pushing back against the dominant narratives that seek to silence or marginalize different identities.
Being at Golin really helped me to realize that we are seen. We are on the come up.