the inspiration thread

  • Alright, so the electronic music thread inspired me (pardon the pun) to start this.

    What inspires you to keep creating? I've decided not to limit this to just music, simply because the arc and monome aren't specifically designed for anything other than interacting with whatever you choose to interact with - and that "whatever" tends to be something creative.

    creative can be music, graphic design, programming, painting, designing circuitry - whatever it means to you. I believe that all people are capable of creative endeavors, but very few *take that risk* to devote themselves to an endeavor, and I have MASSIVE respect for that choice.

    to quote Ray Bradbury:

    "if we listened to our intellect, we'd never have a love affair. We'd never have a friendship. We'd never go into business because we'd be cynical. Well that's nonsense. You've got to jump off cliffs all the time and build your wings on the way down."

    So here's what I know. I make music. I design sound. and now i make max patches, and read about DSP in bed at night, even though I hated math in high school - now that I have a PURPOSE for that math, I want to know it.

    The process of choosing to devote one's self to a creative endeavor, no matter what it is, is SCARY. you're taking a risk. you're outside your natural comfort zone.

    What do you do to keep moving? if you're stuck, what can you do to GET moving in the direction you want to head?

    so if you're moving towards a creative goal, how are you doing it? If you have a goal but it's not well-defined, how do you further define it so you have the clarity of vision required to bring that goal into fruition? If you're feeling uninspired, how do you GET inspired?

    "I only write when I'm inspired. Luckily for me, inspiration hits me every morning at 9am sharp"
    -W. Somerset Maugham

    Art and Creativity isn't about the medium. It's the exploration of self. what the fuck do you know about you? care to share?

  • for the record - here's a little reading list that has helped me a LOT:

    The Artist's Way - Julia Cameron
    The Dip - Seth Godin
    Do You - Russell Simmons
    The War of art - Steven Pressfield
    Turning Pro - Steven Pressfield
    Do the Work - Steven Pressfield

    (pressfield knows how to cut through bullshit like a red hot knife. lol, I'm a fan)

    and here's a TED talk that you've all probably seen by Elizabeth Gilbert about doing the work:

  • "but now that i realize this, i'm simply compelled by creativity itself. when i see creativity in other people, it also gives me hope for a more diverse and open-minded world, so creativity becomes, pervading existence and shared among so many artists and people, a strangely cyclically fedback form of inspiration in and of itself.
    when i need it to be, creativity can be my love, my weapon, my cure, or even just a breath of fresh air... like inspiration itself"

    that's really nice and quite inspiring!

  • I would agree with you both, in that I am much more at home producing music (creating) and spending far too long making a kick drum than dealing with ordinary reality. My comfort zone is in front of my computer, making music.

    What I meant by taking a risk is taking a leap of faith that I could actually turn this into a job. all of the sudden I'm responsible for every decision I make in a new way - and though the path in front of me isn't clear, my goals are. More importantly, I can't tell anyone how to get where I'm headed, but I can tell someone exactly how I got here.

    that being said, things have been looking up for me. I played this years SXSW, I've been working with a real manager - and things that i only dreamed of are beginning to materialize as my new reality.

    That's what I meant by "choosing to devote one's self to a creative endeavor is scary". I don't believe there is anything wrong with creativity for the sake of one's own need to create, nor is there any difference between someone choosing to go all in and make a career out of this, versus someone creating just for themselves.

    I suppose I get so lost in my own way of thinking that I make the mistake of assuming that most people making music are like me - do or die - capable of spending 12 hours in front of a sequencer every day, with a goal in mind. It seems pragmatic to me, but the reality is, it's only my perception, not everyone's.

    thus, I genuinely appreciate your breath of fresh air :)

  • @misk - just read The War of art this morning (not showing off everyone it's only short). the first 2 chapters were REALLY good and helped me identify some things i'm doing wrong and how to potentially overcome the block. i thought that after that it gets a bit god heavy (even though he tries to point out that it's just what he believes and that you can call it a muse, chaos in the galaxy whatever you're comfortable with) and I didn’t enjoy the second half as much.

    Basically THANKS

  • this is maybe not so much on why, but how to be creative, hard to argue with an established master ;D

  • "nobody tells this to people who are beginners, i wish someone told me. all of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. but there is this gap. for the first couple years you make stuff, it’s just not that good. it’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not. but your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. and your taste is why your work disappoints you. a lot of people never get past this phase, they quit. most people i know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. we know our work doesn’t have this special thing that we want it to have. we all go through this. and if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know its normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one story. it is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. and i took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone i’ve ever met. it’s gonna take awhile. it’s normal to take awhile. you’ve just gotta fight your way through." – ira glass

  • @declutter I love that quote. good one!