Fail, fail, fail, fail, succeed

The Curse of Too Many Choices

Creating art is about just what it says – creating. Whatever tools you use to realize your vision are there to facilitate the act of creating. Seems pretty simple, but there’a always a catch. When you are just starting out, all you have is a burning desire to make something. You usually have no craft, no equipment, and no money. The irony is that this is usually the most exciting and productive time of your life. Why is that?

I would argue that it’s because you already have the only thing you really need to express yourself – the intense desire to do so. You are on fire with the drive to make cool shit, so you do it with whatever you have. If you are recording music, it usually sounds like shit – but in a cool way. It’s alive! As time goes by, you get better at the craft, and you begin to acquire higher quality tools. You begin to get obsessed with making the cool shit you have created better. You really learn your gear, and your toolbox grows…

And then one day you wake up and realize you’ve hit a wall. Creativity waxes and wanes, it’s not a constant thing – this is OK, it’s part of life. You have to work through it, and while you are doing so, you get yet more tools to see if they inspire you. But at some point, you find yourself drowning in choices – you now have so many goddamn tools you don’t know where to start. You’ve achieved a degree of mastery over your skill set, and whatever you do make sounds fucking amazing, but you now find yourself with way too many choices and decisions to make before you can even get started creating something. Uh oh -WTF happened?

What happened is that you lost sight of what was really important – making cool shit. Expressing yourself. Creating like an innocent and naive child (I am using these terms as the highest compliment). Give a child a paintbrush and she’ll paint something – but it probably won’t be a canvas! She’ll be lost in the act of discovery and the intoxicating desire to express herself.

This is what we need to return to – the playful and innocent act of creation. Not judging – just doing. That’s where the good shit lies…