Friday, August 08, 2008

Get the hell out of the house!

You’re an artist.
You work at home.
You’re self-employed.
You have no coworkers.
You attend very few meetings.
You wear your pajamas all day.
Your studio is your spare bedroom.
Your work includes LOTS of solitude.
You have clients, but you mainly interact with them via email or phone.

Well then. A job description like THAT can only mean one thing:

You need to get the HELL out of the house!

See, as a creative professional, getting out of the house and into the world is crucial component to supporting, enriching, inspiring and informing your art. Here’s why:

o You get ideas. From your observations, scannings and experiences. Then they get digested by your creative filter and get excreted onto your canvases. Raw material for your art is literally infinite … as long as you’re willing to step out the front door.

o You share ideas. To test them out. To solicit feedback. You let the world be your editor, adding to or subtracting from your ideas to make them better.

o You round out ideas. The people you interact with and the experiences you have add new dimensions to existing thoughts. After all, art never finishes! And, as your references grow richer and deeper, so does your art.

o You change your scenery. This alters your patterns and routines. And regular “breaking of set” enables you to notice anomalies, experience changes and discern intricacies in the world, all of which fuel your art. And, if DON’T do this, sitting in your living room all day gets real old real soon. All work and no play makes Jackie a dull boy … All work and no play makes Jackie a dull boy … All work and no play makes…

o You become more relatable. Nobody can relate to art created in a vacuum. Especially in terms of research, since Google and YouTube can only teach you so much. See, there must be a spirit of humanness and ordinariness in your art; created by an artist who, himself, is human and ordinary because spends time with OTHER ordinary humans in ordinary places doing ordinary things. Without getting out of the house, you’re just making shit up.

So. Still wanna to sit at your desk in your pajamas all day?

Didn’t think so.

In that case, here’s a sampling of Displacement Environments to test out:

WHERE PEOPLE INTERACT: Yoga classes. Coffee shops. Malls. Churches. Temples. Intramural sports. Public beaches. Dog parks. Crowded cities. Or, a really terrible (yet fascinating) day job, waiting tables, selling furniture or parking cars.

WHERE NATURE FLOURISHES: Botanical Gardens. Zoos. Mountains. Local Farmer’s Markets. Creeks. Lakesides. Or, desolate spaces of solitude in the heart of nature’s beauty.

WHERE ART OOZES: Galleries. Flea markets. The Santa Monica Promenade. Theater districts. Schools (especially elementary). Music stores. Or, studios and workspaces of fellow artists, solo practitioners and Spare Room Tycoons.

The choices are infinite!

No matter where you live and work, Displacement Environments are ALWAYS at your disposal.

So, as you test them out, remember these simple rules:

1. Make sure there are living things around. People. Animals. Plants. Anything. They provide the energy, the light and the life force that fuel your creativity. They also tend to be more interesting than, say, buildings.

2. Go there regularly. Not every day. And not according to an overly regimented schedule. Just commit to returning to a certain places consistently, and a variety of places occasionally. Over time, you’ll make friends, become a regular, notice patterns and start to accumulate a rich mosaic of experiences and references.

3. Immerse yourself. And when you’re there, really BE there. Watching. Listening. Scanning. Observing. Allow the world to enter into your consciousness through your unique filter. After all, the goal IS to support, inform, inspire and enrich your creative practice!

So, whether you’re a writer, painter, consultant – or ANY type of Creative Professional, just remember these seven words:

Get. The. Hell. Out. Of. The. House!

Because REAL art can’t be created in a vacuum.

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* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Still eating Top Ramen three meals a day?

Bummer. Perhaps I could help on a more personal, one-on-one basis.

Rent Scott's Brain today!