Reasoning with Madness
"This is a barbaric yawp, and it will be sounded over the roofs of the world."
There are artists in this world and there is the paint by number crowd. America is mostly a paint by number scenario now. Stay in the lines, don't paint the wrong color.
Every thing must be able to be built on a conveyor belt conforming all art toward replication and mediocrity. The only judge of success in America is the almighty dollar.
There's little room for outside the line painting and there's even less room for big bold vision unless it can make a shit ton of money.
All these prebuilt paths to success make it very difficult for the true artists out there to find any success, because success in America means money or power.
Artists need "followers" and "fans" to be "successful" in America. Because those followers and fans are humanized extensions of money and power. So in order for the artist to survive, they must adhere to the paint by number formula.
But what the paint by number folks don't realize is that without the artists, their prebuilt portraits, their prebuilt paths don't exist.
People will say, "the true artist is rare" but they are not as rare as you think. What these people are really saying is "the true artist who conforms and becomes a success in the paint by number world of homogenization is rare" because it is.
There are many true artists. They are all around us. You are probably one of them and you just didn't realize it or you were never encouraged to embrace that part of you. Maybe you just didn't have time, since most of our reality is simply trying to survive. I get it.
But the true artist need not focus on success, but of the creative impulse within, the yearning to participate and channel true divinity. Tuning into the divine channel, the god realm, and letting it move through you.
Art should never be measured by these paint by number standards of "success". In fact, it should never be measured at all. It should not be held in that light. It should simply be embraced for what it is: An extension of a human's soul. A brief tribute to our divinity.
The artist thrives on creative impulse and tapping into the muses around them, making art from nothing and exposing the true essence of this reality in ways that the paint by number crowd could never achieve.
The true artist does not care if what they create generates money. That is not why they create. They create because they must. They create because they can. And they create for themselves and for anyone interested in what they create. Perhaps it has some intrinsic value outside it's mere creation, perhaps it simply exists.
Sending love to all the artists in my world who struggle with this paint by number world we live in. Especially now when the paint by number scenarios are being destroyed every day and that crowd begins to get uneasy without their guidelines. I see you. I hear you. I appreciate you.
Also sending love to the folks in the paint by number crowd who are waking up to the truth that they are actually artists and painting in the lines isn't and has never truly satisfied them.
Tap into your soul, into your muse, listen to that voice within and from without and just create. Don't worry about making money with it. That should never be the goal. Just manifest and create. Shake off the discomfort of embracing your art and just let it happen.
The exciting truth of embracing your art is where it can take you, how it transforms and manifests not your bank account, but your soul. And that creativity begins to permeate the rest of your life too.
Whether it's surviving a pandemic or just making the mundane routine pattern of your life more bearable and meaningful, becoming a true artist is the greatest gift you could ever give yourself. It will last a lifetime and it will never let you down, it will never stop.
Listen to it. Listen to yourself.
This is a difficult time for us all but I hope that it gives rise to a new generation of artists and art, in whatever way it unfolds.
Who Am I?
I am Ahab.