The Year of Magical Dreaming

Make Bad Stuff!

I always used to make the joke: Not all art is fridgeworthy!

It was a metaphor to the latest trend: everyone gets a trophy.

Perhaps it’s a whole ‘nother post entirely, the increase in entitlement of the everyone-gets-a-trophy generation. And the fact that we’re now trying to teach winning and losing to those who have grown up believing we all deserve a prize just for showing up.

I was just watching an interview with Chase Jarvis of #Creativelive and Austin Kleon Steal Like an Artist and it got me thinking about this very thing.

Austin Kleon suggests, and I totally agree: Don’t be afraid to make bad stuff!

Not all our work deserves to be on the interwebs. This coming from a daily blogger, I get it.

And I’ll be the first to admit, I’ve written some real crap.

I also write and create privately, much of which never sees the light of day. I love to journal and doodle and beatbox and rap and dance and play.

I think many of us sensor ourselves because we think anything we create has to be shared.

I’ve spent many many years building up the tough enough skin to post things that aren’t completely polished without fear of criticism. But if you don’t have that yet, than I might be a little more trepidatious about sharing my most intimate creative side.

We also have to be careful why we’re sharing. Seeking outside validation is a slippery slope, especially in creativity.

Any form of art is church, as far as I’m concerned. I feel most tapped in when I’m writing, speaking, in flow.

If we’re already onto how many likes we’re gonna get and on what network to share first, we miss the whole dang point.

In the context that Austin Kleon suggested, if we make a ton of bad shit, there will certainly be a gem or two in there somewhere.

Shakespeare wrote hundreds of plays; I could name three.

Beethoven composed several more symphonies than the two I could rattle off.

You get my drift, it takes a lot to make one thing memorable!

Also, creativity is a muscle. We have to use it to build it. But it doesn’t always have to be our greatest works. Nor does it have to be for anyone else to see/judge/like. It doesn’t even have to be in your genre, in fact it can often be cooler when it’s not.

The most important thing in making bad shit, you don’t judge it. If you set out to make bad shit, what’s there to judge?! It’s brilliant. And often times, it’s getting beyond our inhibitions when shit starts to get real good!

I leave you with this: Where in your life is there room for making bad shit;)?

PS … if you need creative prompts or an intact place to put all your bad stuff, try Austin Kleons new book Steal Like an Artist Journal.


Much Love,