I met several people from the industry, other graduates/exhibitors, and families. The response I got from those that I spoke to meant so much to me. Since When is pretty experimental and abstract, I feel New Designers was going to be a real test to see if the film 'worked'. Most people said similar things - it was difficult to watch but it made them think and feel something which is exactly what I wanted. Many said they feel they have a better understanding and can relate although they may not necessarily have the same struggles I did.
I did also have some heart-to-heart conversations with individuals that have had similar experiences...which meant the world to me. All I wanted was for this film to make a difference in even one person's life...whether that be educational or for reassurance/comfort. I'm very happy and proud to see it be successful in both aspects. I also created some pins for my project to raise money for the mental health charity, Mind. This evening I donated the money plus some extra.
When has also won Judge's Choice for the New Designers Screening Prize...which I honestly did not expect! I was admittedly overthinking the fact that 3 minutes 30 seconds was missing from my film...but I'm glad it still made an impact on the judges. I am very excited I got to meet both Jez Stewart from BFI and Alex Haley from Sky and I really appreciate and value their feedback on the film. It was very emotional for me and I admittedly nearly cried. I think this is another step forward for mental health awareness and I hope it continues to make an impact in the future. I'm also extremely proud that my peer - Rebecca Stapley - was awarded the Audience Choice Screening Prize as well. A double win for CAA!
On the flip side - one of my Art Of books was unfortunately taken from the stand. It was my own fault for probably not paying enough attention...luckily I had gotten a free extra copy since one was defective. I'm trying to look at it as positively as I can - hopefully someone from the industry picked it up or at least someone who really loved the project.
Despite this setback and disliking being photographed, I really enjoyed New Designers and the amazing work that my peers and other graduates from various universities have created. I think there were many projects that discussed a variety of important topics from mental illness to the environment. I'm excited to get into the industry, create more art, and to see everyone else succeed in the future.