Accidental Icon: The Pleasures of Terror

One of the things I most appreciate about being the "Accidental Icon" is the way that it has forced me to go way outside my comfort zone, take new risks and put myself on the line. Whether that line is the mark a photographer gives me when I am working with someone other than Calvin, or a styling project where I have responsibility for the minutest fold in a piece of clothing that represents another's work, being on that line is absolutely terrifying and while in the midst of it, distinctly unpleasant. Yet what I resolutely place on the decision-making scale is whether this transitory discomfort is worth the price of living with the uneasy craving of unsatisfied desire. I consider desire and it's satisfaction more seriously these days because of the way life seems to press itself more urgently against me.

This weekend I was in front of the camera doing a photo shoot for Refinery29. Many people don't believe that I am actually very shy and that it is very uncomfortable for me to have my picture taken. I hope the above paragraph explains why I then subject myself to it. The photographers I worked with, a team called Juco, were amazingly talented and supportive. The hair and make-up folks, stylists, art director and photo editors were complimentary, professional while encouraging fun, and yet I moved through the experience feeling unsure, anxious and yes, terrified. Sitting on the train coming home I felt calm and accomplished.

This weekend I was also behind the camera working as an art director/stylist on a photo shoot that showcases the designs of an amazing woman who allowed me the privilege of working with her collection despite my neophyte status when it comes to styling and art direction. Working again with a team of photographer, hair, make-up, various assistants and two models, all easy personalities, cooperative, funny and resourceful, I still moved through it carrying around those painful feelings like a heavy clip in my styling kit. Seeing the photos later I felt the excitement of having created something new and wonderful.

So where do I end up on this beautiful Monday morning where the sky is endless blue without a cloud in sight? Although I might suffer pain throughout the course of it, going on new adventures, satisfying my curiosity, feeling the rapture when seeing the product of my ever increasing creative impulse and expanding my world, makes that scale tip in favor of the pleasures of terror. Fortunately I am finding it is thankfully a transitory state.

Photography Courtesy of Piera Gelardi

Have you ever suffered some discomfort when pursuing  your desire?


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