Posts tagged artist
there I said it

I have this quote posted on the top corner of my bathroom mirror (yes, I am one of those people). It reads. I am an Artist. I document interesting and beautiful things. I Make Art.

It's been there since December 2012 and I originally posted the message so I would remember - daily - that I am a good photographer. It was my constant reminder that even an amateur can make, see and enjoy art. This blog came out of that quote.

This past weekend at the World Domination Summit 2013, the I am an Artist message took on a different meaning. A much deeper, more resonate message. In order to understand that, let me backtrack a bit. I am a Govie - a 40+ hour employee of the City of San Francisco. I don't run a consulting business, I'm not a career coach, and while I love to travel (this is being written from an airport) I am certainly not a nomad. On the surface I am not the target market for WDS. But here's the thing (and if you attended, you already know this) there is no target audience, except the desire to love your life and be remarkable in it. And that folks is what I needed to hear in order to own my own version of artistry.

It takes guts to work miracles while working for a local government. It takes creativity to find ways - daily - to keep the motivation alive and thriving for my team and our partners. I have the privilege of doing something I love, something I am kick@ss good at every single day and that is awesome. Absolutely awesome. What WDS2013 reminded me was that those things mean I Make Art every single day, whether I hold a camera, a notebook or a computer.

Lots of conferences leave attendees thinking - there are so many things I should be doing, so many ways I'm dropping the ball. They are like giant week-long guilt trips! WDS2013 was the complete opposite. And that's how you know it was life-changing. It was an opportunity to hear amazing people like Chase Jarvis, Darren Rowse, Tess Vigeland and so many others, admit that vulnerability and fear are really parts of the foundation for making great things happen. Once again, I was reminded that creativity and action are inextricably linked. And in order to be our most creative we need to listen to ourselves, deeply.

From the bottom of my growing Artist's heart - Thank You.

the new leadership

Hell, there are no rules here – we’re trying to accomplish something.

- Thomas A. Edison

I grew up in a family-owned and operated business and the standing rule was - you do not socialize with the employees. You may you can care about them, you may even save their life, but there is a line between employee and employer. Now, growing up it was clear to me why that rule existed, but I'm starting to believe that rule is now outmoded.

In the modern workplace, where art is regularly created, relationships matter. First, what is art and how is it a workplace speciality? I subscribe hook, line and sinker to Seth Godin's view: "Art isn't only a painting. Art is anything that's creative, passionate, and personal. And great art resonates with the viewer, not only with the creator." (from Lynchpin) And here's the thing, one cannot accomplish this type of art in the modern workplace without a connection to the team, to the greater whole.

The question then becomes, how does one balance the line between management and the modern workplace, between management and art? Is management in the traditional sense even needed? Or is the desire to become an artist, each in his or her own right, enough to propel the workplace, its art and the social connections tied to it, forward?

I'm learning more and more that connection matters. And in order to make great art (a desire I believe many possess) one must nurture the connections, social or otherwise, we have. As Edison noted, there are no rules when progress is the point.