"It's ok not to know something as long as you're willing to ask."
- Dycee Wildman, Director/Writer
Dycee is one of our favorite creatives and we were delighted to have her share her experiences and her insights with us on the MAKE IT podcast. When we asked her to share a critical piece of advice with our audience, she shared the importance of setting pride aside for the sake of continuous learning.
Dycee’s advice is important not only because we believe it to be universally true, but because it remains a challenge for everyone (filmmakers and non-filmmakers alike). Each of us has been in a room where we wanted to impress those around us and where being confronted with our own ignorance has forced us to make a choice between our pride and the truth.
But the real truth is that, in most cases, the fear of not knowing is far greater than the consequences of not knowing. As JFK put it, "there is nothing to fear but fear itself." This realization isn't one that comes easily nor is it one that comes quickly, but it is one that comes with maturity. It comes with reflecting on the opportunities and the insight missed by not asking a question and making a choice never to put ourselves in that position again.
As we all know, the filmmaking industry is shrouded in so many ways. The pathway to success is not a straight line, there is no one way to do anything, and there is no guidebook to follow. No matter what your role in filmmaking is, your next step is constantly defined by what you learn on the job each and every day. With that in mind, not asking a question when you don't know something will define your next step just as much as having the answer.
Think of it like this: The answer to every question you ever ask is a bridge to your next step forward. It gives you the pathway to inform your decisions and to have confidence in where you're going. Every unasked question takes that bridge away and forces you to find an alternate path. That alternate path could be a simple detour or it could derail you altogether.
We echo Dycee's sentiment by inviting all of our filmmaking friends to put their pride aside and ask questions. Ask questions of teachers, mentors, friends, family, industry professionals, and anyone else who can provide the answers you need to bridge the knowledge gap between where you are to where you want to be. There is always so much that we don't know, regardless of where we are in our careers. Being open to learning means being open to opportunity and, as filmmakers, we'll take every opportunity we can get.
Be Better. Be Creative. Be Engaged.