A scrapbook of stuff I'm reading / looking at / listening to / thinking about...
Posts tagged "originality"
Dec 02, 2013
Any claim I might make to originality in my fiction is really just the result of [my] odd background: basically, just me working inefficiently, with flawed tools, in a mode I don’t have sufficient background to really understand. Like if you put a welder to designing dresses.
Jun 15, 2013
I seem almost a plagiarist. [I quote a lot because I’m] just trying to be honorable and not to steal things. I’ve always felt that if a thing had been said in the best way, how can you say it better? If I wanted to say something and somebody had said it ideally, then I’d take it but give the person credit for it. That’s all there is to it. If you are charmed by an author, I think it’s a very strange and invalid imagination that doesn’t long to share it. Somebody else should read it, don’t you think?
Ivan Brunetti, Aesthetics: A Memoir
Brunetti’s an interesting guy. I love the spirit of the introduction—his humility and his contentment with just being one small member in a tribe of craftsmen…
I am aware that there is no originality in my work, that pretty much all I am doing essentially is making my own version of Peanuts (crossed with Robert Crumb) and a vastly, hopelessly inferior one at that….No matter. I am happy to be a subatomic particle whizzing around inside the seemingly infinite ocean of cartooning.
…and the the book trailer…
As a teacher, I like to encourage my students to explore their own past and explore the things that shaped them. And from there, I think you can use that as raw material for whatever [else] you want to explore. I don’t think anyone should be ashamed of where they came from or the things that aesthetically shaped them….
I’m sure people will look at my drawing style and think, “That’s pretty simple. I can do that.” And actually, I think that’s good. That’s what I want people to say. Hopefully it will inspire someone to feel like they can do it and that they can take whatever limited ability or limited means…even just using the cheapest materials. […] The hardest thing for most people is simply getting started. That’s my hope [for this book] really: that people will look through it and just feel inspired to make something of their own and start valuing whatever it is they make.
If you haven’t read his book, Cartooning: Philosophy and Practice, it’s $10, and probably the best guide to cartooning ever written.
Apr 16, 2013
» The Helsinki Bus Station Theory
Photographer Arno Minkkinen on how creativity is like a bus station:
There are two dozen platforms, Minkkinen explains, from each of which several different bus lines depart. Thereafter, for a kilometre or more, all the lines leaving from any one platform take the same route out of the city, making identical stops. “Each bus stop represents one year in the life of a photographer,” Minkkinen says. You pick a career direction – maybe you focus on making platinum prints of nudes – and set off. Three stops later, you’ve got a nascent body of work. “You take those three years of work on the nude to [a gallery], and the curator asks if you are familiar with the nudes of Irving Penn.” Penn’s bus, it turns out, was on the same route. Annoyed to have been following someone else’s path, “you hop off the bus, grab a cab… and head straight back to the bus station, looking for another platform”. Three years later, something similar happens. “This goes on all your creative life: always showing new work, always being compared to others.” What’s the answer? “It’s simple. Stay on the bus. Stay on the fucking bus.”
As Oliver Burkeman explains, “if you pursue originality too vigorously, you’ll never reach it. Sometimes it takes more guts to keep trudging down a pre-trodden path, to the originality beyond.”
Filed under: originality
Mar 15, 2013
Don’t get it original, get it right.
— Edward Tufte
Jan 30, 2013
I used to want to make poems as though poetry or even speech hadn’t existed before me. Now I work at the other end of the spectrum, making poems mostly out of what already exists, and somehow finding that fresher. More mysterious.
— Peter Cole, from “The Invention of Influence: A Notebook,” in Poetry
. (via ecantwell
Jan 09, 2013
Ideas, in a sense, are overrated. Of course, you need good ones, but at this point in our supersaturated culture, precious few are so novel that nobody else has ever thought of them before. It’s really about where you take the idea, and how committed you are to solving the endless problems that come up in the execution.
Art and design schools still nurture the image of the genius designer as an individual artist. Originality is rewarded as a higher standard than com-munication, and copying is considered a sin.
Dec 05, 2012
Copycat Movie Posters
Nobody copies like Hollywood and advertising. Put them together? Things get even worse.
But before you get too upset, remember what these posters are for: they’re a kind of visual shorthand for genre. The fact that they all look alike is, to the marketing department, a feature, not a bug.
The first thing I learned as a librarian: you can judge a book by its cover, or at least its genre.
Oct 06, 2012
“Don’t worry about style. It will be expressed no matter what you do. Style is part of the way your brain is wired.”
“The problem with art today: the artist believes he must find a style (or a schtick really) and defend it with his life. And if all the schticks are already taken, he must pull one out of his ass. He must find one, invent one, fabricate one, for he can be nothing if he cannot be original.”
“Style is a capitalist invention. It’s a trademark. It’s very useful in the world of commerce to have a good trademark, but it wasn’t my first concern. I got restless…”
“The way to professional accomplishment: you have to demonstrate that you know something unique, that you can repeat, over, and over and over until ultimately you lose interest in it… The model for personal development is antithetical to the model for professional success….Whenever Picasso learned how to do something he abandoned it.”
“In our current cult of originality, the pressure is to have a personal style as soon as possible, and the classroom environments often have this mentality as well. Everyone is freaking out: “What’s my style? What’s my thing?” It’s too much too fast. This race for originality has, over the years, spread from that future-goal timeline to just after college to (now) inside college itself. A safety zone no longer exists.”
“When I talk to young composers, I tell them, I know that you’re all worried about finding your voice. Actually you’re going to find your voice. By the time you’re 30, you’ll find it. But that’s not the problem. The problem is getting rid of it.”
“Don’t worry about a style. It will creep up on you and eventually you will have to undo it in order to go further.”
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