The Art of Initiative

Talent does not begat initiative. Neither does intelligence. Confidence doesn't either, although all of the above are helpful if you have...

Finess? Maybe.

The more people I meet in the art world (hell.. in life), the more I am inspired and disheartened. There are a lot of people out there -- have you been outside lately? Wow. But I guess there's a modicum of balance in that too; meaning, for every inspiring person you meet of course there's going to be a few who disappoint. 

Mayhaps I get ahead of myself. Traditionally I have little patience for people I don't like. That's my fault.

I begin the process of show planning again, this time with a new set of eyes and ideas which will hopefully result in a show that is as fun as I expect it to be. I adore working with people who dream big, are hip to modern art-world ways, and who expect success. I'm really excited about this show. My interest in my art and myself dwindled there for a second, but I feel downright enthusiastic again. I'm happy to have a sounding board outside my own head. Collaboration is so important. 

As are like-minded individuals. Which I feel like I have. Phew. It's really such a great feeling to be around people who want to support each other and work hard together.

I wish I had more tolerance for everybody else. 

I feel so indignant when I run into artists with bored, entitled attitudes. People who wish to be heard but can't listen. People who offer up contrary opinions but no solutions. Loud sighs, never-ending objections. Egocentric dispositions. Criticism, negativity, self-indulgent apathy.

You can hipster your way right out of a successful life.

And for what, really? To win discussions? To appear smart? To seem cool? Okay. If that's seriously what you dig in life. Get drunk with all that hipster power.

The thing is, I guess I used to be that person. Ten years ago I was given an opportunity to share my opinions with a larger group of (far wiser) people, and I absolutely took it. I was more interested in my opinion than how my opinion sounded out loud. I hadn't yet experienced hard work or discipline. I was just snarky and feisty. Thankfully these people saw a potential in me that I didn't know I had. They listened. They looked past my hipsterism and encouraged me to grow. These people changed my life. If not for these people, I'd still be that person.

On the other hand, I'm definitely not as wise and patient as I could be. Maybe I'm not old enough, maybe I don't yet have the experience and confidence to outweigh the baseless opinions of another who just wants to be recognized for his or her own potential. We're all just growing into ourselves, right?

I just wish it could be done with a little more enthusiasm. A splash of positive, sparkling energy. It's kind of sad and pathetic that so many in our society apparently value sour attitudes and false confidence. If presentation is everything, we can do a damn better job at presenting ourselves as cool and smart. The person who has the confidence to encourage others' ideas and foster creativity rather than having to snark all over it is the one who looks truly wise. 

One day I hope to be that person.