|Novel concepts for you to ogle.|
Just something I was thinking about and meant to write up on Labor Day, but that just didn’t happen.
We, in the art community, do not encourage our peers enough.
There. I fucking said it.
And when I say ‘art community’ I mean EVERYTHING. Writing, Drawing, Sculpting, Painting, Baking, Cooking, Metalsmithing, Woodworking, Composing, AND Playing music… If you construct a giant 200 foot tall statue of your favorite character from the most obscure book/movie/game ever out of sawdust and maple syrup, it’s still art.
And don’t get me wrong. There are lots of epic shout outs, and massive reblogs. There are fic recs and story sharing and roleplay blogs and all sorts of amazing things out there that do fantastic jobs of not only encouraging and inspiring artists out there to do their thing.
And that is awesome.
But at the same time, in that same community there’s so many things that just drag down people and make them not want to do what makes them happy because it doesn’t make them happy anymore!
There are people dragging writers through the mud because their special brand of writing just doesn’t tickle their fancy, and they stick their fucking noses up at it! And then they have the gall to turn around and try to run the creator of the content into the damn ground like they just attempted to kill their firstborn child or some shit.
There are thousands upon thousands of people out there harassing and terrifying people out there who may just be starting out, who don’t know what is respectful and not respectful within the community yet. And they do it all because a person had the gall to copy something.
And instead of attempting to educate them, we grab our torches and pitchforks and go out like we’re hell bent to recreate “The Crucible” live from our backyards.
Though here I will say this. Please note that when I refer to the above two paragraphs, I do not refer to companies who openly steal from artists without asking just to pad their wallets with new stuff to sell.
That’s not cool.
And then of course we have the younger set. The new talent. These are amazingly profoundly awesome and taletned people of varying ages that have some really amazing work to look at.
And rather than go “Man, that’s awesome that we have such up-and-comers to blaze new trails…” We get jealous.
We get fucking JEALOUS. WHAT THE ACTUAL HELL?!
THIS. IS NOT. WHAT WE. SHOULD BE DOING!
Instead of trying to police an area that should be open to all walks of life and get all fussy over the new generation stepping up to the bar, we should be encouraging these people. We should reach out with a warm hand and say,
“Welcome. Your work is amazing! I hope you have a wonderful time doing art. And I want to help in any way I can.”
Instead of stepping all over potentials, we should be rising to the occasion and making them feel like they belong somewhere.
Art is a part of life. Whether people realize this or not. Art is a part of culture. It defines us and makes us think. A world without artists of any medium would be a very sad place.
And if we keep attempting to turn the artistic community into an exclusive club, that’s exactly what it’s going to be after a while.
It costs you no money to be a nice person. So be a nice person. And being a nice person and an inspirational figure can transcend age, race, orientation, and everything else that the world can use to keep us separated.
Being encouraging and honest and inspiring is kind of like being the Wonkavator. An elevator can only go up and down, but the Wonkavator can go sideways, and slantways, and longways, and backways and squareways, and front ways, and any other ways that you can think of.
Being that kind of person opens up your horizons so much. It opens you to experiences you might not have thought of otherwise. And all it takes is to reach out and be awesome to someone else.
Be a Wonkavator. Love your peers. Encourage your fellow artists.