You Can Do Anything

"I tried and therefore no one should criticize me."

After seeing this clip on SNL, and seeing it surface around a few friends' blogs and facebooks, I think this is worthy of talking about. 

I can't help but laugh about this because of how accurate it seems to me. And because it seems to be super present in the creative world. There's the ever-present debate of "Are everyone's feeble attempts at being artists and creative prodigies just ruining the creative world and discrediting the real artists and their crafts?" or, "It is so awesome that these things are so accessible and that everyone gets to create things which is one of the best expressions in the world! Everyone should get to be a part of it!"
Honestly, I don't know which one is right, if either could be just right or just wrong. But, I do know that I can't help but roll my eyes when a kid in school says to me says he's picked up falconry because he had mastered rock-climbing and film-making and needed a new hobby. Puh-leez.

So, I do want to know what you guys think! Do we really think we're capable of doing anything and everything? Are doctors and lawyers a dying breed? Are we at risk of being so self-promotional and even less self-aware? Are we a generation of self-serving wannabes? Let's talk it out!


Paige said...

I think we're capable of doing almost anything we want to do, I just think most people start self-promoting the thing they are starting way before they've put the required time to be good at it. Eg starting a photography business when you've just got a nice camera and had no training.
There are plenty of people who do incredible, crazy things all the time, but 9 times out of 10 it's because they have worked on it and done their research and are truly passionate about it.
On another note, some people have gotten famous doing crazy things because they have a lot of money. Which is the kind of thing that drives me nuts about this said "movement" of self-serving people running around.

Lindsay said...

can I tell you how creeped out I am right now? I just said this exact thing. we are soul mates or bff's or something.

Ayley said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ayley said...

humility. that is all.

Kelli Anderson said...

twitter famous AHAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!!!

Kelli Anderson said...

"It is so awesome that these things are so accessible and that everyone gets to create things which is one of the best expressions in the world! Everyone should get to be a part of it!"

that's what i think! i love this snl skit and it's so true.

confidence is never a bad thing, nor is self-esteem. as with any change, the rise of technology brings things both good and bad. it helps and hinders self-esteem, as well as confidence. it's so easy to compare yourself to another blog and become discouraged with your life because their's looks so perfect. this skit is hilarious but only portrays one side of the spectrum. however i can't wait til they do a follow-up of this skit on self proclaimed photographers.

Ayley said...

ditto kelli.

confidence with the pure NEED to explore and create are not bad.

i think warhol said this in so many words... share what you are truly proud of and as people are watching what you just did, make more.

always train like you are second place.

i think...
pay your dues.
work hard.
be a rookie for an appropriate amount of time.
earn rewards.
don't get discouraged thinking there are thousands of other photographers/dancers/writers/artists out there.
there are.
everyone knows it.
keep making art.
just do it.
do what makes you happy.
help others.
keep learning.
stay self-aware.
learn from what is around you.
stay hungry and never ever say you've made it.
never never ever.

the video is so true. so so true. and hilarious. everyone knows someone like that. i laughed soo hard. it's the "everyone gets a trophy in little league" problem.

because there is a huge, huge difference between being good and being great.

but you know... as long as there are the pure ones, and you remain one of them, it's worth doing.

ok. bye.

Anna said...

I love what all of you said. And especially Ayley's first comment. I'm kind of on the fence about these things because I saw this discussion about this very topic and someone said something along the lines of "If Alfred Hitchcock was doing his thing nowadays, he'd get lost and fall into a terrible trap of mediocrity." Which made me think, "Oh man, what other Hitchcocks are out there that we're completely ignoring?" BUT! Then I think that just makes you work harder!
And just like Paige said, the majority of people that are out there doing stuff are truly passionate about it and have the goods and skills to back it up. Maybe I'm seeing this attitude a ton because of my age and the ages of the people surrounding me. So hopefully, once people get a good hard dose of reality in a few years, they'll quit yapping about their non-existent juggling skills. WHO KNOWS. But I really think humility is key. Just be humble. And be grateful. And be smart, clean, and true. Finally, be prayerful, and blessings will come to you.

OKAY THANKS GUYS. I'm glad you guys commented! I like discussions. Let's discuss.

L J said...

I wanna play.

First off. Hilar.
I am currently enrolled in Celtic Dance. I seriously contemplated taking Japanese Calligraphy.

Imma put my 2 cents in.

One Cent:
I see nothing wrong with anyone wanting to start up in any hobby at any time and feeling good about it. I highly encourage it actually. If being creative builds confidence and self-esteem, do it. Even if you suck so bad at it.

Technology is awesome. mostly.

Two Cent:
Now, people can be idiots. But we love them despite. You may be a self proclaimed photographer because you bought a nice camera 2 weeks ago. You may play guitar and only know 3 chords. Its deceiving at times when people say only half of the story. Its lying. and prideful.

Thank you and good night.

Kelli Anderson said...

i love lindsey.

Caitlin said...

I'm sick of everyone saying they're a photographer when the only difference between me and them is that they have is an expensive camera and know how to put a gold filter on a picture. I almost went to med school until I saw how much it would cost. Check me out on etsy.com!!!!!!!!!!! lol

Lissa Chandler said...

I'm coming into this conversation super late and I'm probably not adding anything new.


I think that, nowadays, it is really easy to be mediocre (also bad) at things and get all kinds of praise. I mean, it's not hard to snap a photograph with a DSLR on auto, upload it to Picnik, edit the crap out of it, and then post it on Facebook or your blog for people to ooh and ah over. It's also not hard to say "I'm writing a book" without ever writing more than two pages or to call yourself a fashionista because you take a photograph of your outfit every day. It just isn't hard. I paint, I sew, and I crochet but they're just for fun and, since they're hobbies, they can sometimes be challenging, but they're not hard in the same way photography is for me. They're just fun, which is awesome. That's what hobbies are for!

The problem, I think, comes in when hobbyists (in any creative field) think they're doing what professionals are doing. Cause unless you're a hobbyist working your butt off to become a professional, you just aren't. If you want to be good at anything, you have to put in a lot of sweat, hard work, tears, and time, even if all of your friends tell you that you're the best at whatever it is you're doing.

That being said, I do think creative fields (especially photography) need to chill out because there shouldn't be competition between hobbyists and professionals. They are two totally different ball games.

And that's a teeny tiny slice of what I think because I could talk about this topic for three days straight.

Anna said...

Lissa! Your remarks were spot on. Especially the "there shouldn't be competition between hobbyists and professionals. They are two totally different ball games." I couldn't agree more. There should be a better acceptance of having a hobby just for the sake of having a hobby. Just enjoy something to just enjoy it! You don't have to be pro!

And thank you so much for commenting! It's great to see feedback from people who are in situations just like this, who know exactly what this is all about.

ayley said...

i love lissa's comments!

Ali Malan said...

My response is 10 days late but...oh well. I could practically cry. And I'm not joking. This is a REALLY annoying/hard/shake-my-head-and-have-my-insides-scream subject for me because many of these are or could be, in perfect detail, my friends in art school. And so from my experience, no. No it is not okay to allow the idea that because you entitle yourself "artist," (fill that with whatever) you are worthy of it. To clarify, if it is true dedication that lies behind your talent, or lack, then by all means stay at it. And if by the end the product continues to be poor, that dedication will have surely brought a useful knowledge at least. But the problem is, is that no one is into the dedication dedication business so much as the titling business. It's dangerous for a GAAAZZZIIILLLIIOONN reasons but one most prevalently to me is that these people will one day have to take responsibility of teaching the next generation and what on earth will their by-product on humanity be if their artistic one (in this case) was nothing but cushioned dishonesty? These products will be even more confused with self identity, self worth and self motivation than those in our You Generation; I find that above all most dangerous.