One of my colleagues is doing beautiful work. It’s a series of illustrated videos about international students adjusting to life at BU called Lost and Found.
It is getting rave reviews which it absolutely deserves. It’s something new covering an important topic and done with expertise and thoughtfulness.
A few weeks ago BU Today launched my story about a service dog in training. I was proud of the way the images showed the bond between Lise and Gem and shared a story people didn’t know existed at BU. It was not a story that effects many people. It is after all, a story about Lise and the unusual volunteer job she does. It’s not something many can relate to. A project about international students effects many. Many people can relate to the story that Carlos tells with his beautiful presentation.
I was pleased with my project about Lise and Gem, but disappointed to find its numbers to be very low (“numbers” meaning that not many people shared it on social media, not many people clicked to read and view the story).
Months of work. A story I was really happy to be working on, really happy to put effort into, and not many people cared. The subject cared and that made it worthwhile for me, but to know that when I put forth my best and tell stories I love to tell in the style in which I love to tell them, and no one seems to notice is very discouraging.
I want people to like my work, yes, but more accurately, I want to know my work is valued here at BU. To know that I am contributing in some way to making our publication successful, and when the numbers don’t come in, it sure does make me feel like a waste of space.
One Reply to “Contributing”
I think one of the compelling things about the video is the uniqueness of the platform–video illustration is not something everyone can do, so I think more people are impressed with it because it’s a special skill that he does very well, whereas, with the proliferation of cameras, everyone thinks they can take a photograph (and they can in the most literal sense, but that doesn’t mean it’s any good), so perhaps the impact of photography has diluted, particularly when it comes to sharing. It seems to take a lot to push someone to the point of sharing a story. However, your story seemed to get a lot of reaction in the comments, which I also take as a great sign. Any time you can get people to take the time to respond, you know you’ve done good work. Your story is gorgeous and so touching.