Different Views: Janja Videc
SHE WAS AWARDED WITH “BEST COLLECTION” IN THE FINAL FASHION SHOW FUTURE NOW AT FASHION WEEK LJUBLJANA IN APRIL 2015.
THE CREATIVE PROCESS OF HER COLLECTION WITCHES LOOKBOOK WAS EXHIBITED AT THE SLOVENIAN ETHNOGRAPHIC MUSEUM OF LJUBLJANA.
PARTICIPANTS IN HER PROGRAM FOR FUTURE FASHION DESIGNERS HAVE A 100% SUCCESS RATE ON THEIR ENTRANCE EXAMS FOR HIGHER EDUCATION.
What do you think emotions are?
Very interesting question. I’ve read a lot about emotions in the past. Recently I’ve tried to accept my emotions in the sense that I’m not running away from my negative emotions. I’m allowing myself to feel everything which kind of creates an alchemy of these feelings. They either vanish or transform themselves into something else. I think emotions are some kind of bodily reactions to our beliefs.
How do you navigate your emotions?
I see myself as a very emotional and impulsive person that reacts very fast on all emotions. I used to think this was bad but I’ve changed and started to actually pay attention to my feelings because they’re always communicating something. I do not wish to pretend to be cold and heartless because that’s not who I am – I’m a warm and caring person and I experience the world very deeply and emotionally. Why would I have to hide that? I was recently very angry and, in that moment, I realized how anger is actually helpful in making very positive changes because it shows you that where you are is maybe not where you want to be. Unfortunately, anger is universally judged as the worst possible feeling.
How can you become emotionally honest?
I’d say you have to let yourself feel the feelings and breath through them. Sometimes we stop breathing when we’re feeling something we wouldn’t want to be feeling so we’re blocking the feeling’s expression. You don’t have to excuse yourself for having a more impulsive or emotional reaction. It’s ok. It’s important that we allow ourselves to communicate our emotions to others otherwise those emotions just boil up which isn’t good for our health.
ON SELF-ESTEEM & CONFIDENCE
Can you learn self-esteem or is our parents’s input definite?
I would say that I’ve built my own self-esteem. Nothing was brought to me on a silver-platter. That’s why I can say that it’s possible. What it takes is a lot of work on yourself and listening to yourself. There were times I was very depressed in my past and I was contemplating that it might have been easier for me if this was just simply given to me. I found myself a little bit jealous of those who seemed naturally confident. Right now, I think that it was ok and that it served a purpose because I don’t think I would be who I am today if there wasn’t something that forced me to turn inward to deal with myself.
How do you feel your self-confidence?
I’m opening up and allowing myself to be seen by the world but I used to be terrified of it. I’m less and less concerned with what others think of me. Those who love me will love me regardless. I think this is the result of a lot of work on myself.
What is the basis to having good self-esteem?
I think it’s crucial to start embracing and loving yourself entirely. Embracing even those parts that you’re not very proud of. Not trying to hide them from the world or from yourself but to honestly tell it how it is and accept yourself. I think that is the basis.
What does independence mean to you?
Independence means a lot to me. I can’t imagine being economically dependent on somebody. Even in my romantic relationship, it’s very important to me that we have equality and to never have the feeling that we must be together because we’re dependent on each other but because we actually want to be together. Another way of independence is emotional independence, but within this context, it’s important for me to be connected and open with people that I love. I like feeling vulnerable enough to let them know that I need them while also knowing that they need me.
What does success mean to you?
There are many ways to look at success. There’s this type of success when we look at one person and we think they’re successful because their achievements show it. The other type of success is when you feel it for yourself, inside yourself. To me, it’s more important that I feel good about myself; the outwardly success is not as important because I’m introverted and in conversation with myself. I’d feel empty if that wasn’t the case. The most important thing is that I feel internally fulfilled and that’s success for me. Growth is success – when you look back and you’re able to see what you were able to go through and grow from.
What do you think is the difference between someone who is successful and someone who isn’t?
I think it might be in the fact that someone choses to stay in their comfort zone and doesn’t dare to take the steps required to achieve their dreams or what they want. I know we all have a saboteur inside of us that doesn’t help us move forward. Some people, however, dare to do the things that feel uncomfortable like calling someone they know who could help. Others prefer to stay in their comfort zone watching what others are doing.
What do you think is money?
What does it mean to you?
It’s necessary but I’m not overly attached to it so that I’d want to hoard piles of it (laughs). I need it just enough to fulfill my needs.
What do you think it should mean so it wouldn’t stress people?
What’s the main difference between someone who lives paycheck to paycheck and someone who always has enough?
It’s not an absolute answer but I imagine that those who don’t focus so much on surviving but rather on enjoying life live better. It’s definitely different for each individual but maybe it’s about focusing on the bigger picture because if you’re focused so much on surviving, you can’t really enjoy life’s beauty, and you can’t be open for better opportunities.
What makes someone creative?
I think it’s very hard to say because I’ve been creative from a very young age. It’s who I am. I guess everyone can be creative, unless they’ve suppressed it for some reason.
How would you describe your creative process?
It always starts in my mind and it’s always connected with my spiritual path and what’s currently going on in my life. I allow some time for the vision to show up. It usually builds itself and becomes bigger and bigger until that moment where I intuitively know it’s time to transfer it to paper, to a design…it’s very spontaneous. I used to force this process and couldn’t enjoy it the way I do now. I’m happy that I can work without any institution’s input and have the freedom to give my creations the time they need to flourish. No crazy rush or trying to be ahead of myself.
How did you come to this point where you aren’t forcing your creativity?
I’ve intuitively felt that it was wrong for me to force myself to be inspired in one week and then start making a collection. This was the way we did it at the University. When I had the chance to go abroad and study in Denmark, we were given ten weeks to create a collection and we were allowed to dictate our own pacing. Most people were already in the realization process when I was still researching, which made me a little nervous, but I chose to trust myself and give myself time. At the end, it all worked out. From that moment I’ve learnt to trust my own pace.
Do you have a morning ritual?
I wake up in the morning and do yoga for about 40 minutes, and then I meditate. After that, I do a grounding visualization where I see myself having roots that ground me to the earth. It gives me a lot of energy for the whole day.
Do you have any ritual for invoking inspiration?
The woods. Walking through the woods. I know exactly where I need to go and when I need it.
What do you love about your work?
The feeling of falling into the creative flow and forgetting about the outside world, simply enjoying myself being immersed in the work. I also really love it when I see my finished work on the models. I’m happy to see the fruits of my labor.
What would you like to be remembered by when you’re no longer here?
I think it’s more important that I go in peace than being remembered. Everything is fleeting so it’s not my focus on leaving a lasting impression on this world. What I do want is that people who loved me remember me by the way I loved them.
Photos: Anže Frantar
If you want to know more about Janja’s work, visit her blog at www.janjavidec.com
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