Thursday, October 1, 2009
On Seinfeld, Kramer is talking to Elaine:
Kramer: I was on my way to the store to return this pair of pants, when I ducked into the subway tunnel and fell into some mud.
Elaine: What happened?
Kramer: Well, I couldn't return the pants.
Elaine: You were wearing the pants you were going to return?
Kramer: Well, yes.
Elaine: What were you going to wear on the way home?
Kramer: Elaine, you're not listening. I never GOT there!
Question: Are you satisfied with your accomplishments?
Answer: No, I don't feel satisfaction. I feel: "next." When you used the word "satisfied," I didn't even really know what it meant. John Malkovich, actor
No artist is pleased...there is only a queer divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us more alive than any other human beings. Martha Graham
"The first 3 pages are a mess, but on that fourth page is a paragraph that works---and suddenly you don't care about the first 3 pages. You'll throw them out. Those are the pages you needed to write to get to that 4th page, to the one you had in mind all along, only you didn't know that, couldn't know that, until you got there." Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird
Anne Lamott's book is a wonderful, warm, funny, wise book on writing--but as your read it, you realize you can substitute any artist--painter, sculptor, potter, quilter, photographer, collage and assemblage artist, graphic designer, textile artist, and so on.. for the word "writer". As artists we are all faced with the 'blank page'. We all have that big, hard to define "goal" of becoming a better artist. How do you measure such a large ongoing goal? The goal really should be to keep growing, to keep learning, to keep trying something new. We learn new techniques, read books, study art history, go to galleries and museums, take workshops, and experiment. Along the way, we have successes and sometimes, rejections. And we discover that the journey to become a better artist never ends. If it did, we would stop growing. The journey is more important than the destination.
At 22, Dan Eldon was the youngest Reuters photojournalist ever. As he traveled 4 continents, he documented and transformed all his experiences into 17 journals. These notebooks contained photographs, words, paint, ink, and found objects collected in the course of his journeys. In the summer of 1992, Eldon went to Somalia to investigate the rumor of famine. His photographs helped trigger an outpouring of international aid. But in 1993, Eldon was stoned to death by a Somali mob reacting against a UN bombing. The Journey is the Destination is a book about art, but mostly it is a book about the art of life. Obsession. Dream. Goal. Destination. Journey.