wisdom for creatives

During the pandemic, it can be incredibly difficult to make connections and to find work. Millions are unemployed and creatives everywhere have seen massive layoffs. Music makers are not excluded. The work they do for advertising agencies, music libraries, and other musicians has all been crippled by COVID-19.

I was sent this wisdom from my friend Jason Rudd and found it to be poignant and encouraging.

Originally written by Kevin Paez.

Creative people are needed. Don’t believe the nonsense that you are not essential. I would argue that creativity is what gets us out of the current state of the world, in every challenge we face.

Successful creators know from experience that the very limitations and parameters that are given are not defeating, but rather spark and focus the imagination.

In light of that, here are some things that have repeatedly come up for me during the lock down:

Maintain your health. Don’t catch, don’t spread. Move. Sweat. Eat like you are in training for the best phase of your life. Research some dietary improvements, vitamins.

Avoid neglect of your talents and skills. They are more valuable than you are being led to believe.

Practice intellectual hygiene. Deploy Occam’s Razor early and often. It does cut down so much nonsense, so quickly.

Limit your social media engagement. You are not obligated to explain Occam’s Razor to people who are unable to think critically.

Be efficient with your energy. It is very easy to get scattered and distracted from basic life when there is a constant stream of scary news. Brainstorm, make lists, and knock things out one at a time. You don’t have to worry about November while you mop, or garden.

I don’t have to mop the garden til November.

Consume quality media. Not just news sources, but books, radio, podcasts, music, film, and episodic TV. Observe and learn from all the elements, production value, performance, space, settings. Consider everything that must have needed to happen to arrive at the release of works. “It takes a village” doesn’t have much value to a considerable contingent of our current society, but the presence of that foolish mentality will diminish. Prepare yourself to collaborate with every willing participant on the team that will get this ship righted.

Stay in touch. After 22 years of being phone-averse, I have noticed I am suddenly keen to check in on voice calls. Zoom with whomever suits you. Call or text those you are missing, or for whom you have concern today. Seek ideas. Listen carefully. Allow people to thrash, rage, cry. I have noticed there is an abundance of direct honesty going around. Welcome it.