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Be undeniably good.
When people ask me how do you make it in show business or whatever, what I always tell them and nobody ever takes note of it ‘cuz it’s not the answer they wanted to hear — what they want to hear is here’s how you get an agent, here’s how you write a script, here’s how you do this — but I always say:
Be so good they can’t ignore you.
Those words aren’t mine, they belong to a much smarter man than me. His name is Steve Martin (the full interview is here if you want to check it out.
If all you know of him is his comedy work then you should sample the rest of what he has on offer: insightful books, intelligent literary and film criticism… the guy is a genius – hell he even released his own banjo album (don’t worry – this isn’t a preamble to a banjo video, but if you want to check out his mad strummin’ skillz then here).
Mr. Martin is dead right. With every industry (and not just those populated by creative types) there is always a placebo pool of things that makes you feel like you’ve achieved something when you haven’t done anything at all. Eddie Vedder hit a nerve in ’96 when he brought that to everyone’s attention at the Grammy’s:
Let’s face it – doing anything truly great is hard – so hard that people have invented a whole host of half measures (like money, awards, groupies) to create the illusion that someone has created something truly amazing when all they’ve done is filled the a small niche in the current cultural market and advertised the hell out of it (for more examples see the complete discography of Nickelback).
So how do you know if you’ve ever created something excellent?
It’s so good you can’t ignore it.
Don’t take it from me. I can’t speak to that – I have yet to create anything that I’d truly call great – take it from a musician who operates without a studio, instruments, band, turntables or microphone – and who also operates without excuses.
All he’s got is two pens:
Discovered these oddities a while back but haven’t shared them on this blog so here we go:
Sometimes art and science run parallel and never meet. Sometimes they run in opposite directions screaming at each other as they go. But sometimes they meet at a glorious crossroads and create an amazing convergence.
Usually that point is located around porn.
To explain, a while back a Belgian artist, Wim Delvoye, started messing around with x-ray images in his work like this:
Cool, jarring. Intriguing.
And then he started messing around with x-rays of people kissing, licking and fellating each other.
I know. I mentioned fellatio, where’s the fellatio?. The rest of the pics can be seen courtesy of Joseph Brett’s blog here.
All of this coolness was sent to me via @BenjaminAyres so, of course I had to try and one up him with my internet skills (yes, this, as you suspect, is what I look like – though I recently quit smoking):
Anyway, my Google-fu was in fine form and I discovered footage of a scientist who captures two people having sex in an MRI machine. Video is below (be patient, the sexin’ begins at 1:30, perv)
Ah, art and science, united once again by porn.
It’s everywhere. The planet has 326 million trillion gallons of the stuff. If we shared it equally among all the people living on this world right now then each person would get over 46 billion gallons.
Each person who is, of course, composed of 55% – 78% of water.
Could anything be less remarkable?
Yeah, yeah, it’s pretty but who cares?
I’m guessing you in about three minutes.
A preeminent water photographer (yes, there is more than one), Martin Waugh, shows a wealth of absolutely incredible material in this clip – including a rare double water drop. What’s that?
Check it out:
“If there is magic on this planet, it is contained in water.”
~ LORAN EISELY, The Immense Journey, 1957
This is the tale of Williard Wigan.
Willard can’t read. He can’t write. People used to tease him and make him feel small.
So he escaped – not into drugs or booze, not into himself – Willard escaped into the head of a pin.
He embraced his impulse to care for those things that are dismissed, passed over and ignored. He started building houses for ants.
It’s not a bad beginning to a fairy tale but when you see it in reality…
(bonus video points for using the term, “Dickens of a time.”)
Sometimes the best things come from the worst things.
Here’s a three pack of videos – you may have seen one, you may have seen them all but they’re worth watching more than once.
Timelapse footage of the smoke from the Los Angeles Wildfire:Vodpod videos no longer available.
Kseniya Simonova – the “sand animator”. Her videos have been making the rounds pretty heavily on the web over the last few months since she won the Ukraine version of “America’s Got Talent”. If you haven’t seen her work then you should. One of her videos that you may not have seen is here.
Here’s her brilliant, simple, moving depiction of Ukraine fighting against Germany in the second World War:
Kuroshio Sea, the world’s second largest aquarium (song by Barcelona):