I liked your old stuff betterA Lesson by Mike Lamb
Your old stuff is now. Be stubborn. Evolve later.
One of the things I like to explore with this course is the idea of "good" and "bad" advice. Sometimes it depends on the situation. This is a lesson for the younger crowd. You know who you are. You're cocky and you don't want to be told what to do. It might make you a pain in the a*s to be around, but when it comes to creating art that you're passionate about, it's an essential phase that shouldn't be ignored.
1. The ego phase. You need to start out by doing things your way. Ignore the rules. Ignore criticism. Do what you want and keep doing it until you've mastered it on your own terms. Art, writing, music, whatever. Is it derivative? Does it come off like a cheap carbon copy of your influences? Doesn't matter. Roll with it. Be your own audience. Surround yourself with praise. Know your strengths and don't worry about your weaknesses. Just do it because you love it. Sharpen your talents without outside influence.
2. The conflict phase. Once you're confident enough, even over confident, you're ready to enter the realm of criticism. Dare people to make your work better. Assume you know exactly what you're doing, while bracing yourself to be told otherwise. Why? Because if you walk straight into the critical phase with no ego, you're going to get walked on by anyone that pretends to know what they're talking about. You'll take every piece of advice as gospel truth, because you have already submitted yourself to the role of clueless amateur with no direction. You should already have a path by now. Listen to advice that expands that path, not the advice that makes you find a new one. Don't try to make yourself evolve out of nothing; have a starting point and force your critics to meet you there.
3. The enlightenment phase. Once you've actually learned some things, you can apply them to what you already know. You'll see that you really have gotten better, probably by leaps and bounds, now that you're willing to listen to suggestions from talented artists that you can respect. But without the ego phase, you never would have known what to apply the knowledge to. You would be a voiceless beginner bogged down with lectures and guidelines and you would lose your passion for what you're doing. And then your best talent would lie not in creating art, but in giving know-it-all advice based on theories that you've never practiced. The best innovation comes by accident, over time, and on top of a solid foundation.
Oh, but just one thing, and this goes for writers of all ages. LEARN TO F*****G SPELL.
Added on September 20, 2010
Last Updated on September 21, 2010
AboutArtist, writer, and a drunken lunatic prophet. I am the author of Jack's Inferno, a dark comedy bizarro/horror novel about Hell, previously published through Wordplague (now defunct). I am also a pro..