Chasing Change

Life

Ezra Pound

“The artist is always beginning. Any work of art which is not a beginning, an invention, a discovery is of little worth.”  -Ezra Pound

Always be moving forward. Always be pushing yourself to do something new. Always be innovating. Always be striving. Always be starting over. Don’t get complacent. Don’t get to comfortable. New beginnings are scary but oh-so-necessary.

Mondays are hard and senior year is scary, but I am growing more lately than I ever have because I’m doing things that scare me. This is a good reminder not to fear change. We should embrace it and chase after it, because out of change comes progress. And progress is awesome.

Art Ranting for the Claremont Spotlite

Adventures, Art World News, Contemporary Women Artists

The Claremont Spotlite is a brand new online publication that highlights local artists and cultural events in the Claremont area. It’s a really neat idea and, despite just launching this year, the site already has a bunch of great content. Last week I wrote a guest blog post for them where I got to rant about art. In particular, I wrote about how I’ve been using the widespread availability of online arts communities as an excuse to stop experiencing art in person. Why trek all the way into LA during rush hour traffic to see an exhibition when I can discover just as many inspiring and innovative artists on Tumblr? It’s all online. I don’t even need museums or galleries anymore!

It’s been something that I’ve grappled with a lot over the past year but I’ve recently been reinvigorated by in-person art experiences. If that’s at all interesting to you, go check out the article on Spotlite for some personal musings and unsolicited advice.

With the unlimited potential of a Google search bar, it’s easy to forget about the opportunities for discovery that exist right here in sleepy Claremont. Finding artists online is so easy that I often don’t pursue opportunities that are unique to my geographic location. I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve actually made it to an LA gallery show, and I can count the number of museum visits on two. The Internet is an amazing tool, but I fear that I have been using it as a crutch instead; as a way to avoid seeking out creative experiences in person. With the whole world wide web at my fingertips, it is easy to forget that we have an impeccably curated gallery right here on campus. Every time I stumble into the Ruth Chandler Williamson Gallery I am impressed by the variety and caliber of artists shown, but I always forget it’s there. I always plan to attend the exhibitions, but even as an Art History major, I’ve missed more shows than I’ve attended.

Linda Lopez 3

Linda Lopez

linda Lopez 2

The Gap

Life

Since I started this blog I have discovered a lot of insanely talented people. Often they are only a few years older than I am. And often they are wildly successful. This is absolutely inspiring but it’s also pretty intimidating.

I set out on this internet-documented journey in order to grow creatively and and express myself. But it’s easy for me to look at these incredible artists and start to doubt my own ability to contribute, making less and feeling worse about what I am making.

I stumbled across this video and the words of Ira Glass a couple days ago. It has really reinvigorated me and I am hoping for some good creative karma by spreading it around. Get inspired!

The New Artists

Art World News

I came across an interesting article in The Atlantic today which addresses the current cultural shift towards “creatives” instead of “artists.” Art as an industry has always been defined through the money-making apparatus attached. From craftsmen and artisans to renaissance geniuses; art changes along with society. But where has the artist ended up?

This article argues that the rise of the internet and the ability to self-promote online has resulted in the “Death of the Artist and the Birth of the Creative Entrepreneur.” The industry has migrated online, appealing directly to potential customers.

“The push of institutional disintegration has coincided with the pull of new technology. The emerging culture of creative entrepreneurship predates the Web—its roots go back to the 1960s—but the Web has brought it an unprecedented salience. The Internet enables you to promote, sell, and deliver directly to the user, and to do so in ways that allow you to compete with corporations and institutions, which previously had a virtual monopoly on marketing and distribution. You can reach potential customers at a speed and on a scale that would have been unthinkable when pretty much the only means were word of mouth, the alternative press, and stapling handbills to telephone poles.”

There seems to be a lot of building going on: you’re supposed to build your brand, your network, your social-media presence. Creative entrepreneurship is spawning its own institutional structure—online marketplaces, self-publishing platforms, nonprofit incubators, collaborative spaces—but the fundamental relationship remains creator-to-customer, with creators handling or superintending every aspect of the transaction.”

The internet has democratized countless other industries. So why not art? But the shift from artist to creative is one that merits special attention. I find that the most successful artists online are choosing to label themselves differently. They are stylists, illustrators, designers, creative directors, graphic designers, art directors, creative content creators, makers, photographers, or some complex combination of three or more of these titles. And they are running their art like a business.

So what will all this mean for artists and for art? For training, for practice, for the shape of the artistic career, for the nature of the artistic community, for the way that artists see themselves and are seen by the public, for the standards by which art is judged and the terms by which it is defined?”

Seriously, go read this article. It’s interesting.

(image is from designlovefest one of my fav design blogs which exemplifies this type of art/entrepreneurship. Bri is the ultimate creative hybrid.)