Make Good Art!

Wonderful, level-headed speech to graduating students at Philadelphia’s University of Arts by writer Neil Gaiman. You may not know his name, but you know his work: Coraline, comic books,graphic novels (Sandman series) short fiction, books, here an episode of Dr. Who, there a Simpsons episode, the list is long. At age 15, he made a list of what he wanted to do, then got started, and apparently, never stopped.  He discusses the sense of fraud that successful creative professionals experience; the nonsense about creative people wearing a tie and going to an office every morning, the importance of learning to say “no”. He reset his balance between writing for a living and spending a lot of time writing emails by responding to each one. He encourages creators to take chances and make mistakes; you acknowledges that the ultimate life saver is the secret that creative people share that others do not: we have the ability to make art.

It’s a terrific video, and well worth twenty minutes (or so) of your time.

His response to things going awry, as they will: “Make good art!”

The one thing that you have that nobody else has: “You!” (Your ideas, etc.)

The moment that you believe that you’re walking down the street naked, that you’re showing too much, that’s the moment . But you’ll have no idea. And what would be the fun in making something that you know is going to work? (Gee, he’s smart!)

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