"In Impro, Keith Johnstone writes that when improvisers try to be original, they fail. “Don’t be original; be obvious.” When you state the obvious, you actually seem original. Paradoxical, eh? Likewise, the more specific the feelings, experiences, stories – the more universal they appear. The trick is, what’s completely obvious to you isn’t obvious to anyone else. Many people can tell exactly the same story about exactly the same event, but if each speaks from their authentic point of view, each story will seem “original.”"

— Nina Paley, “The Cult of Originality” (via)

(via austinkleon)


Do you know that feeling in class when somebody raises his hand and says, “I don’t get it,” and you feel so relieved that you aren’t the only one who isn’t getting it?

That’s what great artists do.

They ask it.
They say it.
They express it.

They put in words what so many
Others are thinking and feeling
And wondering.

They affirm that
You aren’t the only one
Having this experience.

Or something like that. #poetry #doodle #fridaze

Or something like that. #poetry #doodle #fridaze

IT’S HERE. #new #murakami #reading #goodbyesociallife #isiahrecs

IT’S HERE. #new #murakami #reading #goodbyesociallife #isiahrecs


Child in the womb,
Or saint on a tomb —
Which way shall I lie
To fall asleep?
The keen moon stares
From the back of the sky,
The clouds are all home
Like driven sheep.

Bright drops of time,
One and two chime,
I turn and lie straight
With folded hands;
Convent-child, Pope,
They choose this state,
And their minds are wiped calm
As sea-leveled sands.

So my thoughts are:
But sleep stays as far,
Till I crouch on one side
Like a foetus again —
For sleeping, like death,
Must be won without pride,
With a nod from nature,
And a lack of strain,
And a loss of stature.


— Philip Larkin. Via Maud Newton. Filed under: sleep. (via mlarson)

(via austinkleon)

"This is the argument that I always feel like never gets as much traction as the ‘tortured artist’ argument, [which] is that artists actually have it a little easier because everybody fucking suffers but artists have something to do with it."

Jeff Tweedy (via austinkleon)

(via austinkleon)

"Don’t make stuff because you want to make money — it will never make you enough money. And don’t make stuff because you want to get famous — because you will never feel famous enough. Make gifts for people — and work hard on making those gifts in the hope that those people will notice and like the gifts."

John Green (via this-is-dedicated)

(via this-is-dedicated)

"I never thought that I’d be discovered. I just thought I’d be somebody who was a hard worker. For me, things started to happen once I completely gave up the concept of being discovered. I discovered what I wanted to do. That would be my advice to young performers: don’t want to be famous. Want to be legendary. In many ways, fame is the industrial disease of creativity. It’s a sludgy byproduct of making things."

Mike Myers (via austinkleon)

"For me, language is a freedom. As soon as you have found the words with which to express something, you are no longer incoherent, you are no longer trapped by your own emotions, by your own experiences; you can describe them, you can tell them, you can bring them out of yourself and give them to somebody else. That is an enormously liberating experience, and it worries me that more and more people are learning not to use language; they’re giving in to the banalities of the television media and shrinking their vocabulary, shrinking their own way of using this fabulous tool that human beings have refined over so many centuries into this extremely sensitive instrument. I don’t want to make it crude, I don’t want to make it into shopping-list language, I don’t want to make it into simply an exchange of information: I want to make it into the subtle, emotional, intellectual, freeing thing that it is and that it can be."

— Jeanette Winterson

The Talent Code

THE TALENT CODE - By Daniel Coyle

A very interesting (to say the least) book that I accidentally stumbled upon on Amazon as I was purchasing a different book. The idea seemed attractive; “Greatness isn’t born, it’s grown”, so I took a chance on it.

Coyle spends much, if not the whole book, centered on the idea that deep practice produces a biological action in which a cool little fellow called “myelin” insulates neural circuits, this neural coating creates “broadband” for the firing of said neural circuits. So basically when you practice deeply myelin is insulating certain neural circuits (by the continuos firing of them), and therefore wrapping them so that they can be fired faster and more precisely. Which brings the question, “Are you firing the right neural circuits (and thus coating it with myelin) when you practice?” Coyle makes sure to define what he means by “deep practice”.

Deep practice is built on a paradox: struggling in certain targeted ways - operating at the edges of your ability, where you make mistakes - makes you smarter.

"You can do the same practice two different ways. The brilliant way is the way of thinking, learning, and building. The other is just a waste of time."

"You will become clever through your mistakes."

Now, to be straightforward, I was off put by all the scientific and neurological terms/ideas, but Coyle was very aware of this potential brick wall for his readers. He swiftly introduces it, and then hastily moves on to a more pragmatic approach.

All in all this book seems to be more geared towards athletes and musicians, and other skill-based professions that involve a direct and clear way of practicing. I had trouble trying to integrate the information into the art world, where subjectivity makes “mistakes” complicated. It seems that all modern art is, nowadays, are just glorified mistakes. “Well I was trying to paint a cat, but instead I messed up and painted this abstract masterpiece.” But that’s more or less the nature of creativity, mistakes are welcomed, encouraged even.

So yes I struggled trying to imagine what “deep practice” looked like to me, as an actor, especially an actor who thrives on creativity and the mystery of the unknown. I enjoyed the stretching of my mind though, because it did birth in me some very tangential ideas which I found very appropriate and timely (somehow). It’s funny how that works. I learned a lot from this book, maybe not exactly what Daniel Coyle intended, but in the end it seems trivial for that to matter. 

A challenging, yet surprisingly docile, read. I finished it in about 4 days total over the course of a week.

(My struggle with integrating the ideas Coyle presented. Stretching is an understatement. )

Want to borrow or a recommendation for another book? Just ask. 

"Being highly motivated, when you think about it, is a slightly irrational state. One foregoes comfort now in order to work toward some bigger prospective benefit later on. It’s not as simple as saying “I want X”. It’s saying something far more complicated: “I want X later, so I better do Y like crazy now”."

Daniel Coyle “The Talent Code”

Highly recommended for any entrepreneur or artist who dares to hold on to their creative voice while still taking over the world. #hughmacleod #reading #isiahrecs

Highly recommended for any entrepreneur or artist who dares to hold on to their creative voice while still taking over the world. #hughmacleod #reading #isiahrecs

"Art has to be a kind of confession. I don’t mean a true confession in the sense of that dreary magazine. The effort it seems to me, is: if you can examine and face your life, you can discover the terms with which you are connected to other lives, and they can discover them, too — the terms with which they are connected to other people. This has happened to every one of us, I’m sure. You read something which you thought only happened to you, and you discovered it happened 100 years ago to Dostoyevsky. This is a very great liberation for the suffering, struggling person, who always thinks that they are alone. This is why art is important. Art would not be important if life were not important, and life is important. Most of us, no matter what we say, are walking in the dark, whistling in the dark. Nobody knows what is going to happen to them from one moment to the next, or how one will bear it. This is irreducible. And it’s true for everybody. Now, it is true that the nature of society is to create, among its citizens, an illusion of safety; but it is also absolutely true that the safety is always necessarily an illusion. Artists are here to disturb the peace. They have to disturb the peace. Otherwise, chaos."

James Baldwin, 1961 (via manufactoriel)

(via burkaaan)


Layered Glass Table Concept Creates a Cross-Section of the Ocean by Duffy London | via

With multiple layers of stacked glass and wooden slices, Duffy London has built ‘the abyss table’, replicating the dramatic depths of an indigo ocean. the design creates a geological cross-section of the sea, completing the table as a 3-dimensional model of a geological map.

‘I was looking into sheets of thick glass at my glass manufacturer’s factory, and noticed how the material darkened as they added more layers – the same way the sea does as it deepens.’ designer christopher duffy describes ‘I wanted to use this effect to replicate a real piece of the earth’s sea bed. like a mythical power had lifted a perfect rectangle straight from the earth’s crust to use as his personal ornament.‘ traditional to the design studio’s aesthetic, the furniture piece acts as both a conversation piece as much as it does a functional one.

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(via burkaaan)

Transgress perspective. #fearlessla  (at Arts District, Los Angeles)

Transgress perspective. #fearlessla (at Arts District, Los Angeles)

Tags: fearlessla