Before going back to school for commercial photography and becoming a photo stylist, I was briefly a high school art teacher.  On the first day of class,  students were asked to complete a short questionnaire.  The questionnaire included the obligatory art ed question,  “What is your favorite medium to work in?”

My favorite answer:  “SHORT PANTS.”   He preferred working in short pants.  His naivety was genius!  Why didn’t I think of that?


Why didn’t I consider clothing as a possible answer?  I couldn’t see his answer because I was too close to question.  I was an insider.

Yes, his answer is a bit naive, but his inexperience was also his edge.  He could see what I could not.

If I am stuck or struggling to solve a problem, I change my optics.  I need outside perspective; I need ‘short pants’ perspective. Outsiders often provide the most obvious and simple solutions that an insider is incapable of seeing.  I seek new perspectives and value what the outsiders, the naive or inexperienced can offer — fresh eyes.

What do you have to lose?  There’s no harm in asking for feedback and opinions.  And who knows, working in short pants could be the solution !