“To be an artist you have to give up everything, including the desire to be a good artist.” – Jasper Johns
When I was seventeen years old, I kind of figured that I was better at writing than those around me. Had won a few competitions, and all my teachers were impressed by what I could write.
I wanted to be good. I wanted to be the best. I had the type of goals that one cannot utter out loud for fear of being locked away in a mental institution.
I liked to impress people, and then I would also impress myself.
I’d write short stories the day before a deadline. Soon, I became complacent. I thought that I was so good that I just had to stroll my fingers across a keyboard and magic would appear on my computer screen. Continue reading How to Be a Good Artist
“Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan Press On! has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.” – Calvin Coolidge
I know it’s not artistic, but you’ve got to work hard.
“I know you’ve heard it a thousand times before. But it’s true – hard work pays off. If you want to be good, you have to practice, practice, practice. If you don’t love something, then don’t do it.” – Ray Bradbury
A relentless desire to succeed is more important than talent. Being brave and perseverant to the point of madness, to the point that your work consumes a very large part of your life, to the point that you do it and do it and do it until the job gets done. You don’t even have time to think about whether or not your good… you just do.
Those who sit at their desks to work beat those who sit around, waiting for inspiration to come to them. Stop wishing for the fairy tale, and accept life as it is.
You’ve got to do the work. Your hustle must match your ambitions and dreams.
That is all.
“It’s none of their business that you have to learn to write. Let them think you were born that way.” – Ernest Hemingway
Hemingway famously rewrote the ending to A Farewell To Arms 47 times. Yes, folks, he did not write brilliant first drafts.
No one ever did. No one ever will.
Talent, as an innate ability, does not exist. Continue reading Talent Does Not Exist
Sticks and stones may break your bones,
but it’s words that break one’s heart.
So, take care of your words, and how you use them. Be mindful of when you use them and why you use them.
“The arts are not a way to make a living. They are a very human way of making life more bearable. Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven’s sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possible can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something“ – Kurt Vonnegut
How do you save a life?
Ever thought about it? Ever wanted to? What kind of actions or words saves someone from peril? From themselves? From a cruel fate?
What gives people hope?
What nurtures dreams?
What keeps them fighting even when the odds are stacked against them?
Well, I’d say it’s art. It’s the art we create, the art we share with others. I’d say that art enriches our experience of reality. Yes, it can also offer an escape, but it can also make us appreciate what we already have. Continue reading So, You Want to be An Artist
Pablo Picasso requires no introduction. Arguably the most famous painter in existence, his level of genius comparable to those of Salvador Dali or Jackson Pollock, the Spaniard created some fifty thousand artworks during his life.
“It took me four years to paint like Rafael, but a lifetime to paint like a child.”
Corrida et Pigeons (1890)
Not bad for an eight year old, right? Continue reading Showcase: Pablo Picasso as a Child