Yesterday, my daughter Tabs and I were talking about success. During that conversation, I noticed several times where she mentioned “learning from”, or “did it like (name)”, or “looked up examples of”. Again and again, I realized that what she was explaining was how she finds models.
Before applying for her #1 college of choice to enter their character design program which has a 5% acceptance rate, she looked through every, single portfolio that had ever been posted.
As she looked through these designs, she tested styles. When she found one that lent to her own natural talents, she began to practice and grow that style.
During the summer of last year, she took an online class from an instructor that worked at the college she wanted to attend. She figured having his training and feedback, being experienced in what the school looks for, would be advantageous.
At each phase, she shared with me which of the drawings of hers AND the other kids he liked or didn’t like, and she made notes of these for models along the way.
She watched college reactions of kids that had gotten accepted, and then clicked through to see any samples of their work she could find.
She never copied them, of course, she just used “what worked” for inspiration.
She’s working to grow her TikTok following and told me that she just started using the music and styles of what she saw others were getting massive engagement from. Again, MODELS.
She took a course from someone that is a major influencer in the space, so she would have a proven model.
This morning, as I’m sitting here doing my daily content research, I find myself doing the same thing, again and again.
When I want to level up on a specific skill, I take to youtube and competitive analysis to see who’s succeeding at that element, and I use their work as a model.
It’s pretty incredible what’s available to us today digitally to find proven models in just about anything we want to do.
Using a model doesn’t mean we lose our own creativity. It just means we have a more solid foundation to build on.
I don’t know if my daughter knew to do this instinctively, or learned from me (as a model), but either way, I know she’ll be successful as long as she continues to find the models and take action.