Friday, November 8, 2013

Riding the Waves

                                                      Video Interview Link
 As I sit here writing this new blog post, I realize that today's blog inspiration comes from the artist M.I.A. Although I have not consistently followed her musical career, I recently came across a video interview with her, discussing her perspective on the creative ebb and flow of a 'successful' creative career.

That lead me to remember that many years ago, my first job in the photography industry was at the legendary Magnum Photos Agency. As a totally green upstart, I was smart enough to know that I wanted to learn the ins and outs of the photography industry, from the best. What I learned, went way beyond the brick and mortar skills of being a photographer. I learned that a photographer's career - even the best photographers in the world - is akin to the waves in an ocean. Sometimes you're 'in' and sometimes you're 'out' of favor with editor's, clients, your peers, and the general public.

Regardless of which category you are perceived to be in, the artists with a strong belief in their vision, abilities, and growth, always seem to ride the waves over a long period of time. Their ability to navigate the waves is usually due to their innate knowledge and acceptance that each wave cycle provides an opportunity to dive in or pull back. Both choices are equally important and necessary for one's creativity to flourish.

Needless to say, this point of view is quite contrary to today's popular belief that you have to constantly be 'out there' to be relevant, or that success is solely defined by your Google ranking, auction prices, and the number of 'friends' or 'followers' you have. As M.I.A. brilliantly says in the interview, "My growth is not supposed to look like the growth chart of Mac, each quarter. Whatever happened to being a human being?".  #Truth, #Humanity,  #Creativity,  #M.I.A., #Questions.

Lauri Lyons