Stalking Curses & Sisyphus’s like Loneliness : Chronicle 5

I already wrote a little article about this question : Why do people blog? Why do people post on Instagram? It was a long list of hypothesis, but at the end, I bet that people post to be loved. I read this week that the worse thing for depression is Instagram (because, as I guessed well, people often want to show to the world that they are “very happy, blessed by life and in love”, which makes the viewers jealous or at least a bit depressed because themselves are obviously NOT that happy, right?).

You click a hashtag, randomly, and you see billions of pictures. Why do people post on Instagram? The key word is “motivation”. Some take pictures and post them to :

  • Get followers
  • Share their work
  • Meet people with same interests
  • Indicate to others how happy and blessed they are
  • Show how interesting they are
  • Make people laugh
  • Show their “beauty”
  • Reveal beautiful places they visit
  • Indicate they are in couple, in love
  • Indicate they are sad, alone, or tired
  • Put a stalker in pain
  • Show their artistic talent
  • Show their project

Etc! One good question is :

When you post something somewhere, are you aware of your audience, or do you work only for yourself, your happiness?

I watched Paterson and I immediatly thought about another movie : Dead Zone : Christopher Walken is in coma for many years after a car accident. His wife remarry. Then he wakes up. His loneliness is then unbelievable (and the actor fantastic at it). It’s a world of ice. And he has a power to see the future…

Paterson (Adam Driver) is terrible alone too, but it’s VERY different. He has a beautiful young wife, a job (he’s a bus driver), some friends in a bar, and he writes poems. He’s quiet, modest in a modest life – he doesn’t talk much about his poems (though he continuously meets other people – a rapper, a little girl, a japanese man – interested in poetry). He writes in his bus, while he has lunch, in his basement. Nobody reads his poems. He sees struggling people around him (two young men lost with flirting, a colleague and his numerous family problems, a broken-hearted black man in the bar) and stays impassive and calm, benevolent. Idem with his girlfriend (who is a sweet dreamer, a dabbler artist). We all see he is not really connected, to anybody. He just goes on with his life, quietly putting words in his little booklet…

Walken and Driver are standing up. They are the loneliest characters I’ve seen ever (well, apart from Tennessee Williams’ plays). Both find something to do, though. They find their “mission”. The first one leads to drama (it’s from a Stephen King novel, after all). The second one is revealing a “way of being in the world” : being there without being very concerned (cf Inside Sidestepping) or affected. It talks about Sisyphus and about the Waldgänger, too…

It broke me heart, yesterday night, like a Chekhov or a Carver short story can do…

Slide, mortals, don’t bear down

 

Thanks for reading! Have a great week-end!

 

(I love this little dances of words too : Walken and Driver/Driver plays a bus driver/Paterson lives in Paterson, New Jersey/etc)

 

 

 

 

Undug Fields of a Second Talent

A few years ago I read a great book by Patti Smith, “Just Kids”, she was a very young woman coming to New York City at the end of the sixties, and meeting Robert Mapplethorpe. It was a surprisingly tender though intense book! There were like two creative babies.

Smith was then sure to be a poet, and Mapplethorpe a graphic artist. They had a love affair, created together “mixed arts” like little totems or dreamcatchers, and the end of the book shows three changes :

  • Smith understands she should sing her poetry
  • Mapplethorpe understands he is a good photographer
  • And that he is gay

The rest is the legend, of course.

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This article is about this mild “Wrong Way Up“, when you’re sure to be good somewhere, ignoring that your golden road is elsewhere, in another life, another art, another discipline, another field.

I remember one day a Russian instagrammer. She was pretty and her main activity was to take selfies, or posing as a model. From time to time, say 5% of her photos, she took pictures of what she saw : trees, people, skies, streets. And well, you can guess : these pictures were AMAZING. Instagram is full of good photographers, but to have a real original sense of photography, color, moods, is very rare. It was so good that I wrote her something like “Okey your body’s great, but you have a fantastic EYE for photography, do you realize it?”. She answered very kindly that it was just for fun, not her field, and that she was a model.

Curiously, I wonder about that “trait” about me. I have this blog you’re reading now (It’s really an exercise (I’m French), a therapy, a way of standing, etc), and also a casual Instagram account. Both are quite unsuccessful because I post with too much diversity.

See : Constantly Random is an Instagram Flaw.

All this is very humble, though this blog is very important for me. A friend of mine has many times tried to convince me that I should focus my energy on my pictures.

This dial is disturbing to watch. What about you? Do you have a field, undigged (OK undug) and opened to the winds? Are you too casual with a hobby you could be better at? Why would we ignore this? Who could we ask? What do we have to do to understand, to wait? To meet a revealing someone?

Thanks for reading!

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Instagram : bodylanguage

Fecundity of Limits

If you’re a creative person, you encountered the “Fecundity of Limits” concept, obviously. Fruition. I’d distinguish :

  1. the limits you choose yourself
  2. the limits given to you by someone in charge
  3. the limits you encounter while you’re building your stuff.

Choosing your own limits is such… a pleasure. It’s about preparing your work. Paint something with 3 colors only. Write a book in a month. Travel, but no more than 5 miles a day.

Limits coming as instructions can be a relief. Many actors talk about the freedom you have while you have to obey strict orders. It’s about unfolding inside a frame : perfect for certain personalities.

The limits you encounter are parts of the building process. Your technical shortfalls is a good example. You then move forward “within” your capacities – trying maybe to push them back. The budget can be a limit. You’ll discover the others while you work : It’s a stream, a current!

Tool : Choose, change them, ask someone for limits (as seeds), think about them while your create, and then… forget your feedback : you’re in the flow, a good one!

Thanks for reading! Work well! Travaillez bien !

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Pastures New & Feathers Song : Chronicle 2

Douglas Kennedy says that there are two ways to meet tragedy. The first one is the bad luck coming from nowhere : brain cancer, car accident – among encounters with idiots and traitors. The second one is our own (and sometimes powerful) ways to make bad choices, auto-sabotages and other subtle ways of self destructing.

“Mission : not to be duped by myself” and it is easy to say : we all are, at one moment, pastures new seekers. Et donc…

I bought Libération, the newspaper, because yesterday was the first day of our new president in France. French people are funny, they already complain about this guy. They want change, but every attempt puts the whole country on strike!

Well, he’s been elected, right? He’s 39 years old and I’m 51 today, that’s a bit disturbing ! So I watch all the messy mess and I smile : people will very soon Facebook “Macron Go Away”, like with the previous president. But he won’t go away, for sure. I’d say : shut up and let him work.

I read a long interview with Ridley Scott. He talked about Francis Bacon (the painter) as an inspiration for his chest buster. He talked about The Duellists, so graphically gorgeous (after Barry Lyndon) he was accused by critics of inventing “too beautiful images”. “Fuck off”, he said : “I used no filters!”.

I remember the letters A L I E N in the movie theater when I was a student, and today I went to the cinema to watch Alien Covenant for my birthday.  In the movies I saw a blowing wink towards Giger (knowers will know) and a surprising re-creation of The Isle of the Dead, by Böcklin. If you want to play Google, you’ll learn that Giger painted his own version of the painting…

I was a very young man when I saw one of the five Böcklin versions, in le Musée d’Orsay, in Paris. I stopped in front of the gigantic painting for maybe half an hour. Tremendous shock.

Yes I found a white feather just after I bought Libération. My brain said : “??!”. Is a feather is a tool to write, or a symbol?

“The gods weave misfortunes for men, so that the generations to come will have something to sing about.” Mallarmé repeats, less beautifully, what Homer said; “tout aboutit en un livre,” everything ends up in a book. The Greeks speak of generations that will sing; Mallarmé speaks of an object, of a thing among things, a book. But the idea is the same; the idea that we are made for art, we are made for memory, we are made for poetry, or perhaps we are made for oblivion. But something remains, and that something is history or poetry, which are not essentially different.”

Jorge Luis Borges, Seven Nights

Misfortunes towards words. I know better now. Maybe.

Thanks. Good day!

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Working with what you have… today

When I was 25 I complained to a friend of mine who was 40, a painter. I was composing music slowly and in a bitter way because I was missing instruments, equipment, etc. I had a Macintosh, a mic, a synth, a reverb and a flute.

In art or life, sometimes we feel stuck, therefore we don’t do anything, because we “miss something”, we don’t have enough of this or that : we just wait, bored like a lonely koala in the taiga.

So we just “watch a goal”, a state or a line where, at last, we will be able to begin.

THEN we will have enough time, enough money, enough energy to do it!

I will… paint, compose, be happy, invent, write, blog, learn, the day I will have this or that, blah blah blah…

This is procrastination, laziness & threnody. Sometimes it’s useful to wait, though…

My friend told me I was silly, and, as a painter, that if she only had a pen and paper she would work. “Do something with your flute and your keyboard, instead of complaining, silly!”.

Okey. Watch around. Pick up a tool. Begin. To begin : begin, as they say. Now. That’s true!

…unless you don’t work for another reason, using this syndrome to do nothing. Rhoooo this is baaaad!

Bonne journée!

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Instagram : taranewton1

Fruitful Constraints & Creativity

It’s an old tool many artists know : many constraints are fruitful. Mainly because a constraint is a problem calling for a solution, therefore you have to move, to be creative.

All jobs and activities have constraints : budget, environment, other people, time, space, your skills, your tools.

If it’s too loose, though, you feel a freedom, which can be messy. You can not catch anything. Stuck. You maybe need to tight something up, to find “your” freedom within a new frame.

Brian Eno invent the Oblique Strategies (mainly for musicians) as a card game. You pick a card and you have to obey (sometimes it’s terrible!). Some directors are well known to tell the actors to follow precisely something (the dialogs, or the places they have to move on the set, etc) before shooting. Some digital artists sometimes go out in a park with a pencil and a notebook. A photographer can go outside with the limit of 20 pictures taken, not much. And G. Perec wrote an entire book without the letter “e”.

 

Constraints are fruitful. You probably have many disposable levers for these. A poet can obey : write something in alexandrine; without any letter “p”, in less than 5 minutes. You may have to present a project in ONE minute only, and… with no words. What are your levers?

You can pull a lever to Zero, it’s the Total Constraint. For example, you’re a photographer and you go out without any camera. Just your eye. You’ll feel the need, you’ll feel your brain simmering. As you can only watch and… think, you’ll maybe have bursts of ideas (instead of taking pictures).

Of course it’s an example of “Amor Fati”, being content with what happens to you, even if it seems bad. Embracing fate : every constraint, if you can’t avoid it, should (and will have to) be danced with.

Thanks for reading!

 

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Instagram : f_pilvi

Goth Subculture Predictability

The good old world of romantic love imagery is a clear map. Everything is : Smiles, Pink color, Kisses, Flowers, Couples, Spring or Holidays and all kind of tender togetherness.

The good old world of Goth Subculture or Metal imagery is a clear map. Everything is : Mist, Skulls, Black color, Red Roses, Tatoos, Blood and Death.

You just have to move the lever from this to that. Hop.

Then, music, outfits, accessories, tatoos, it’s a whole moronic burtonian set of always-the-same I know what you’re doing…

I knowwww, sometime we just need to be… recognized.

If you need more subtilities, something less predictable, go away!

Why is predictability so repellent, to some persons?

Why “We’re different, let’s gather to… resemble”, to look alike peas in a pot, is so awful, for certain minds?

After all, Goths are said to be sensible persons!…

 

Tool & Dial : Predictability. What about ourselves? What about your product? How to find, in what you do (poetry, web, marketing, music, painting, photography?) the MAYA balance between being NOT predictable (because it’s boring) and being acceptable?

Thanks for reading!

#instamood #mist
#instamood #mist