[ 5 min read ]
Diary of an artist, Tuesday, July 9, 2019
Woke up 4:45 am
Took some fantastic photos yesterday!
Non-obvious is usually more interesting than obvious. But, sometimes obvious can also be very interesting, perhaps even more interesting than non-obvious. I don’t think non-obvious always trumps obvious. More often than not, yes. But not always. Obvious can be rediscovered (presented in a different way, from a different angle) and thus, in a way, it ceases to be obvious.
The more curious and the more willing to experiment you are, the more you will shoot the non-obvious, or the more you will want to make the obvious non-obvious.
Yesterday I wrote about inspiration. I said that everything can inspire. If that’s how you approach everything nothing will ever be pointless to you. Nothing you did and nothing others did will ever be pointless to you. If anything can be an inspiration, nothing can be pointless. Nothing is a waste. If that’s how you approach all human work (especially the creative side of a human being), you will censor yourself less, and you will never say that something someone made (including you) was a waste of time and energy. Because if something ended up inspiring another human being (or even had the potential to inspire people), how can it be a waste of time and energy?
Not only the things we make (our work) can inspire. Everything that happens inspires us (has the potential to inspire people). Inspiration can be found anywhere. Even the bad things inspire us. Wars, battles, killings, atrocities, hatred, trickery, pain, suffering, etc. Some say that the best writing comes from those who experienced war — who witnessed it, who have been close to dying people, who saw firsthand what human beings can do to each other, and also who saw myriad attitudes people presented during a war. Isn’t it ironic that something which we wish were wiped out, something which we strive to prevent at the same time gives birth to some of the best pieces of literature and art? I think it is very ironic.
And if you’ll look at paintings and literature, that’s precisely what inspired people over the millennia (to a large extent — among other things). It can’t be denied. Maybe that’s the same inherent mechanism which causes people to be more interested to hear and gossip about things which are sensational (off the wall, weird, taboo, dangerous, astonishing, horrible), and not about so called “normal” stuff. Normal (obvious, conventional, proper) is boring to many of us (maybe even to most).
We’re like dogs or other animals who are hardwired to constantly pay attention to what’s weird, violent, potentially harmful, so that they have the chance to escape or prepare to defend themselves.
Most of us play by the rules, but most of us are way more interested to hear when someone didn’t play by the rules, than we are to hear that someone did play by the rules. Disobeying the rules beats obeying them when it comes to winning people’s attention. Which the producers of news understand perfectly and which they harnessed.
Music for this writing session: Max Richter (on spotify)