Work: Surviving the Arts

Exploring issues of sustainability in the arts.  

–by Scott Pinkmountain  


Part 1: Do


The most important thing is that you do. Everything will evolve from the doing. When you start, maybe there’s one question. It doesn’t have to be too big – an “Is there a god?” type thing. In fact, it’s better if it’s not too big, though of course it needs to be big enough. Open. Flexible. Most of all, genuine. You have to not know the answer, or sincerely believe you don’t. If you have one good question, it will generate others, but only if you do.

It’s also important that you not worry about doing well. Quality will suffer from overt desire. What will enable quality is the parallel development of two functional identity states. One is the generator, the maker, the improviser. The other is the critic, the editor, the composer. In order to achieve quality, they must be kept distinct. Their separation is what makes this path so difficult. But without the separation in place, you’ll either become paralyzed as a perfectionist, unable to release into the world, or you won’t be able to see anything through to the end because you’ll become over-enamored with the generative process. Continue reading