Behind the Button: Margot Harrington of Pitch Design Union

Comparison can be a huge challenge for creatives– You look outward to get inspired, but wind up feeling like you don’t measure up compared to everyone else’s awesomest work. Artist Lisa Congdon wrote poignantly about the comparison trap after her talk at Weapons of Mass Creation Fest this year. Another former WMC speaker, designer/blogger Margot Harrington‘s design for this year’s Button-O-Matic series speaks directly to this tendency to compare ourselves to others. Margot’s advice: You do you. Read on for more on the inspiration behind her design.

What inspired your Button-O-Matic design? 

I’ve been seeing the phrase “you do you” in various comments around my social media timelines the last few weeks. It strikes me as an a quip-y reminder to avoid falling into the trap of comparison to others’ work and lives; a message everyone needs to hear at least once. Also typographic buttons nearly always make some kind of cultural or political statement and I wanted to carry on that tradition in an encouraging way.

What do you want people to get out of your button?

“You do you” is entirely open to wide interpretation, but only within reason. It’s not a veil to use as an excuse for hateful jokes, manipulation, or whatever other behavior that negatively affects the people in our lives.

Party-goers at the Button-O-Matic release party flock to the machine dispensing Margot’s “You Do You” design.

Pick up your own “You Do You” button at Button-O-Matic locations in Chicago and across the country starting this month.

Read more of the advice offered by this year’s Button-O-Matic artists through their designs.

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