Be The Artist You Want To Be

A while back, I wrote about the desire you must posses to succeed with the goal you’ve set. Whether it’s making your film, putting out an album, artists of all kinds must possess passion. I believe it must be to a level that it becomes intoxicating.

I recently had a conversation with a working actress here in Germany. She expressed how the question of giving it up had come right before she was booked for a role in a production in Berlin. I have mentioned this because I feel that we all come across that feeling. I’ve been tied to my job and each day it feels like I travel 1 million miles further away from my dream.

The good thing is that this is just an elusive phenomenon. You have to remember that at any given moment you have the ability to choose what your destiny will be. That’s not an easy task, especially with the overwhelming bombardment of noise from the status quo.

If you’re close to giving up on your dream, find some inspiration from the following video. Maybe it’s time to reconsider your strategy and your process. That’s what you have control of, you’ll never have the perfect circumstances and you’ll never have enough time.

Take the leap of faith!

 

Step, step, trip.

After two productive and semi-harmonious weeks at work, today wasn’t a good day to get the week started.

I’m no expert with Microsoft’s IIS, I’m familiar, and at work I sometimes end up wearing other hats. So if I have issues with our server, I have to fix it.

The whole thing reminded me about being resilient.

It’s very important for an artist to have resilience. Especially when it comes to internet trolls. When you start putting your work online, for the public to see, you will start experiencing negative feedback.

Here is what you can do. Remember to focus on those who understand you vs those who don’t. It is not your job as an artist to reach out to those who are rejecting your ideas. Doing the opposite is going to distract you from your core audience.

Don’t go and turn off comments from your social media real estate. You have to continue engaging your audience. Tim Ferris uses the living room policy. Treat your comments as if they were not online, instead treat the commenting situation as a conversation in your living room. If someone was acting rude in your living room, you’d simply asked them to leave. And sometimes ignoring the ignorance will keep you focused and fade out the troller.

And most important, keep making content and stay focused. I allow myself a certain window of time for dealing with a conflict. My Monday might not be ruined, it just feels that way if I’m facing difficulty. But when I put a deadline, I’ll either accept the failure or reach a point when I’ll ignore the problem and move on to something else on my to-do list.

When a door closes, when you receive negative criticism, or simply when someone rejects your ideas, you will make a choice, that will turn the situation into a dead end or it will reroute you to something else.

Trust your artistic sense and most importantly the universe.

 

What’s next?

So do you like the new design? I think this year, WordPress, got it right. This is the default template for 2014. In the past, the design wasn’t great, but this version really shows the capabilities of modern browsers.

I’m going to keep it for now. I’m focusing on what I’m going to be doing next with this blog. I’m going to review more movies. Not new ones, but the old ones. This is something I have wanted to do for a very long time.

I also want to start taking more pictures and start driving my Flickr content to the blog. More importantly, I’m going to start blogging about my project, The Chauffeur.
That calls for a schedule, which means, I’m going to post in different sections at different times and days.

But that’s what’s going to happen. And hopefully more filming and more editing.

 

Facing Adversity

Working abroad has it’s own challenges. The most comment for me is language miscommunication. My english idioms don’t alway translate properly and viceversa. But in the end that’s simple. You ask for clarification, or you simplify your language to better illustrate your point.

But what about when you feel like you’re talking to a wall and the other party isn’t making the effort to understand. Take note of this one approach…

Investigate the Incentive
One time in the Czech Republic a buddy and I were left stranded in a small town. We hadn’t made it to Prague yet, but we had already run out of money. We needed to get some extra cash, but the term “ATM” didn’t translate. We stopped by a bar, and we make it clear we had no cash. We needed to get to an ATM. With our hand gestures and repetitive language, we illustrated the concept by taking out our card, sliding it next to a coaster holder, and pushing a small bill that we did have under. The bartender quickly figured out what we needed.. “Money Machine!” Yes!

The bartender had an incentive, for having paying customers. And we had plenty of time to kill until our next train. So it worked out.

When we are having creative discussions with other individuals, and things just don’t seem to click or there is a great deal of resistance. Don’t get mad at them. Start investigating their incentive. If they don’t see eye to eye with you, ask yourself why? Could it be there is no incentive for them to be part of the project?

Eventually you’ll find that most of the time it’s their ego. People don’t want to be embarrassed or up-staged and sometimes that is the cause of their resistance. Sometimes, their concept is completely different. Think, Catholics vs Evangelicals; Seth vs Jedi.

This kind of adversity you have to face on your own. It’s about not becoming discouraged with the fact that there is someone or a group of people who don’t see your vision. Use an exit strategy that is honest and dignifying. There never had to be bad blood between individuals because they didn’t see things your way. Allow yourself to step out of the situation in a graceful manner.

When I was in film school, there were a lot of personalities. And what I quickly realised what that the industry had a place for everybody. It was upto me to find the right place and choose where I wanted to fit in.

So then the next time you feel that it’s becoming an overwhelming task to get in sync with someone else. Be grateful for their perspective and remind yourself of YOUR vision.

Because if you became swayed by others, we can’t truly say, we’re are our own creative driving force.

If derailed, get back on track, refocus and stay determined.

Keep Making Content

This has been the longest since I posted on the blog. I keep wondering who is my audience. It should never be too hard to figure out. It’s you the creative ones. There is something important that I want to mention in this post. That is to keep making content. Self-esteem is undeniably one of the greater forces of life, we are either going to become empowered by it, or dragged down. Artist will face all sorts of obstacles in life. Negative reviews of your music, film or art work will always be there.

Living in Los Angeles, I think, is much easier to find a core group of people who will support you. We’re also more critical because we are all content creators. But recently being out here in Germany I think about those people who aren’t fortunate enough live in an artistic circle, like LA, NY, Berlin, etc.

It doesn’t matter. We all would be foolish to think that our scene is our limitation. With the power of the internet, we can choose where to live and where to do our business. I’m starting to find more like-minded people. Sometimes it takes a few weeks, sometimes a few months. The process can last even for years. But time is a wasting, if we don’t make the effort and aren’t open to hear what others people opinions are, we will stay stagnant and unable to make any progress.

The simple act of making the continuous effort is evidence that we have that determination. Keep focused. Stay on course. And most importantly, keep making content. New songs, new tracks, new films, everything.

Possessing determination

It’s interesting to me, when I learn something that is totally not expected. I think most of us try to seek the unknown. If you’re in your safe and comfort zone, you’re probably gonna  there. But for those who trek outside of that confort zone, the opportunity to discover awaits us.
This blog should be helping out artist. I definitely don’t want to waste your time. But most important, I want to be resourceful in what I present.

I’m thinking about switching the conversation from YouTube to SoundCloud. Simply because cause most of the new Twitter followers that I’vee been getting are musicans. So my question is, what do you need to figure out?

This blog isn’t about how to produce your music. I’m assuming you have already mastered that part. Now you need to get some spotlight in the digital realm.

Your collateral is your product. So it doesn’t help that you’re still working in your master piece, you have to posses the determination required to dedicate your time and focus for small amounts of time throughout the month or even weekly.

My First Formula
Here is what I do each Monday.

  • Utilize Buffer App to schedule posts on Facebook and Twitter.
  • Ensure IFTTT is still working.

Some of my social media is automated. Every time I like a picture on Instagram it automatically re-posts on my Tumblr.
What are you doing on a regular basis? Let’s figure out some new formulas that we can share with others.

Don’t forget to follow on Twitter @cowglow

Cheers

Mastering the Stress

Hello Creative Souls,

It’s been awhile since my last post. And I have no one else to blame but myself. It’s been busy at work of course, but I’ve been too tired to dedicate time to my blog. What’s the quick solution? TAKING ACTION! The solution should always be simple.

Today I want to talk about coping with stress. This topic will either connect with you or not. It’s a phenomenon to me, but sometimes we can all get into this tunnel vision mode and it inhibits us from learning. I think it’s natural, and most people turn around.

What is the challenge? Ask yourself if it’s out of your hands. Like the weather. No one can help it, so why let it ruin your day. When I first started working on a movie set, I would always see people freaking out. It ranged from zealous ADs that were just assholes to menstruating female PAs. Once in a while the crew would be made up of other veterans and we would always comment on the situation, but we kept it to ourselves.

“If there aren’t any bullets flying why are we freaking out?”

If it is in your scope, what can you do to right now to change it? Its been my experience that most of the time we know already what it is that we can do. We just don’t want to do it. We worry that the efforts won’t be noticed. But what’s is important is that it gets done. Remember that this day like any other will be over and the next one will start whether you like it or not. And when you really have a roadblock, take it as the Universe telling you to take a break. In that case most definitely enjoy it.

Chaos exists and its part of our world, so be in the moment and don’t get swept up in it. I’m from California, and one of the traits of surfers is that they go with the flow. I don’t surf but I can relate. I try to practice awareness, specially in a stressful situation. The more often you do it, the easier it will be to catch the trigger. Internally a red flag will pop up and you’ll be able remind yourself of the fact that no matter what we become and how much success we get, we are still all human beings who are emotional. So when someone is angry realize that they are just projecting. Flip the image and ask yourself why you would be acting this way if you were the angry one and the other person was you. Maybe this will help you get some perspective.

I leave you with this final thought, whatever the circumstances, focus your thoughts and energy like a laser, point it directly at your goal. Visualize yourself being successful and you will overcome any obstacle. Invest your energy in your creative endeavor and have fun, let a strong radiant vibration of positivity come out from within you every time you are faced with adversity.
Be strong, be creative and don’t forget to follow me on Twitter.