“Why don’t people give a shit anymore?” … about creative people. This is the question the author is asking in the article with the same name – I added only the ‘victim’. And the truth is that my opinion had been very similar some time ago.
My viewpoint has changed though. The world is NOT divided into creative and non-creative people. Everyone is creative in some way or other. Unless that creativity has been killed in you, either by the education system, or by your ignorance. Or by the media. You chose the culprit…
For many people, the creativity has been the synonym of artistry. And many of those people consider artists as ‘leeches’ on life and the economy. In that scenario there are two groups of people. Those who ‘work hard and produce’, and those who ‘play and create and waste their time and “our” money’.
Now, according to the article, those non-creative people ‘don’t give a shit’ as they don’t pay for product those creatives produce. Author writes that it was the internet that eradicated the scarcity on which the previous business model was build. Once all the music, movies and other creative works are readily available and many are free or almost-free, most of the people don’t seem to care anymore. Why should they?
Over the last century only a handful of artists and creatives have become stars and idols for the masses. These stars have been creating and producing, and the masses have been … well, consuming. It is a simple and highly profitable process, or business model, for those on the top. But where has been the rest of creatives left?
Let’s look at this situation from a different angle. I hope you will agree with not only me, that everyone is creative and thus everyone is an artist. So the current stage of arts consumerism is not sustainable.
Because the pure consume of someone else’s production in the era of plenty is not satisfactory anymore. In the world of abundance the process of creation in itself can be much more fulfilling.
If everyone is creative, then everyone can be a creator. Not creating for others and the masses, but for himself or herself in the first place!
This is not anything new. Rather it is like re-inventing the wheel.
Here is my personal experience. My grandpa was a farmer in Europe. Born at the beginning of the 20th century, he had spent most if his life in the world of scarcity. He was the last generation not touched by the rampant consumerism, and a great example of a creative person.
Partly out of necessity, but more because he enjoyed doing it, and was very proud about it – he weaved his own wooden baskets and creels. He made ladders from trunks of young trees. He carved huge wooden pigeons-houses. Painted and decorated his house with graphics.
When he went to the local pub for a drink, he asked the owner to turn off the radio. Then started singing his beloved old-fashioned songs. Often the whole pub got inspired to sing along.
Was my grandpa unique? Not at all! Also my grandma used to weave carpets – a hard work, but she was also creative throughout the process. And when she prepared butter to sell in the nearby town, she carved beautiful ornaments on the yellow balls of butter. To attract and please the eyes of potential buyers.
The local blacksmith worked hard on producing horseshoes and pitchforks. But he got really creative with ornamental candle-holders and knives.
Many others worked in their specific area whole lives. At the same time they differentiated themselves through adding unique creative or artistic angle to their products or creations. To enjoy themselves and please others.
Why am I writing all this?
Because in the current world of material abundance and media consumerism, you need to rediscover your own creativity. You have to get it back!
You could copy and emulate the way our predecessors used their creativity. How they were creative and artistic in their daily lives. You can do it using tools, knowledge and approaches of the 21st century. I am not proposing that you should start weaving creels, although for some that could be exactly what they would love to do.
I am suggesting to be more creative in your lives. To include artistry into your daily schedules. And through that to suppress stress and reduce depression. To feel better, more proud, more in control of what and how you do. To learn from the creative process and use that knowledge in other aspects of your lives.
Music and particularly the music making or musicking is fantastic ‘artistic outlet’. Even more if approached mindfully. Because when you make music mindfully, you not only take care of yourself. You also ‘give shit’ about others. You are creative and you care.
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