5.07.2011

The Big C: Fail Fabulously and Ghost 'em

Hello Tulips!* When I speak to people about what keeps them from creating work, most often their biggest obstacle is Fear. They get stuck in the muck of the preparatory stage because they are too afraid to make a mistake--worried that the results won't be perfect or worse, feeling exposed by critique.

What if I’ve forgotten what to do?
What if people don’t like it? What if I don’t like it? Can I handle that?

They’ll peep other people’s creations and retreat because they are intimidated. I could never do that.

Let it go.

Amazing work should not make you mute: it should stimulate and inspire you. Don’t despair! Skills come with practice, time and instruction. But the creative Juice, the idea generation is up to you. Making Art is an Art, not a science! There is no perfect formula, no exact set of instructions, no precise prescription. That's the joy of making: The complete and total Broad-acity of the whole affair is what makes creating so exciting!

So what if your final product is not perfect? What happens if a project doesn't turn out the way you hoped?

Nothing. Nothing happens.

The planets will remain in orbit.

Ocean levels will remain stable.

And you make another one.

The next Great Myth of Creativity is that when artists create work, they effortlessly produce precious masterpieces like it's as easy as growing finger nails. TRUTH: Professional artists make lots of crap! They research and go through drafts upon drafts before achieving a final product that they can live with. Be ready to make a lot of crap.

Creative thinking is process oriented. You can't be afraid of failure because failures are learning opportunities. Mistakes and botch jobs are essential to any learning process and provide you with invaluable knowledge that you can only gain by messing up. If every tiny project you create is precious, cozy and easy going you will never move forward. Be willing to ruin it for the sake of progress. I like to think of works as experiments. If a masterpiece fails--that's huge. If an experiment fails-- not all experiments work and that is the nature of experiments. :)

Trust yourself. Your guts know where to go! Being creative is about risk taking. Our lives are full of risks, we do it constantly: Speeding. Smoking. Grocery store produce. Poisoned bottled water. Texting while driving. We’re willing to risk our LIVES for convenience and comfort but we’re afraid to let someone read our work or audition for a play. What? Why? Because of the BIG C!

There is an overwhelming fear of Criticism. Know this Kittens, as someone who has been trounced by strangers and peers, harsh criticism that isn’t constructive or relevant to your work stems from two sources: Ignorance and Fear. When people run off their mouths it is because they either:

a) don’t understand what’s being presented to them

b) are cowards acting out of jealousy

or c) a rather pitiful combination of both.

We can’t let uninformed people squash us. Imagine what the world would be like if Madame Curie, Frida Kalo or Lena Horne curled up under the covers and refused to work because they received a nasty comment from a nameless jackass on YouTube?

Sticks and stones may break your bones, but you're gonna leave 'em in the dust, Darling.

Take comfort in knowing that if nay sayers are nipping you--

you’re on to something good

1 comment:

Shell said...

You speak the truth!! Many times I had to overcome fear to keep going as an actor. If not, I would have quit long time ago.

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