suck wall

posted by victor @ 12:06 am May 2, 2009 in film,life,music,writing

blankcanvasThere comes a time on the road to artistry when one encounters the Wall Of Suck. That is the wall you hit where your natural ability at something leads you to actually study and practice it, which takes you to the point where you are met with the actual depth and breadth of your incompetence… Suddenly, you suck. Suddenly, it is devastatingly clear that your “natural ability” was just a starting place, a jumping off point on a journey to the place where you might actually get good at something. I call it a wall, because this is where you either give up (turn back) or your workload increases exponentially (i.e., your forward movement becomes a vertical climb). I’ve encountered it a few times in my life; some pursuits presented challenges I could not ignore and proceeded to engage with all my energy, damn the consequences… Others were ultimately revealed as misguided, and I bailed.

passionI think what pushes people up and over the wall is passion, pure and simple. Either this thing truly lights you up and inspires you, or it  does not. When it comes down to it, it’s just you and the _____ (guitar, blank canvas, whatever), and no one really gives a shit. If you don’t absolutely love doing it, you will not do the work, and you will continue sucking. The road ahead is arduous, lonely and often boring; frustration is constant (the curse of good taste comes strongly into play), and nothing but overriding love for the sheer doing of it will push you through. Plus you have to be stupid enough to actually think you can be great at something, and be willing to perform (show, tell, whatever) in front of others and be humiliated. Yay! Oh, and your work will truly suck — even after you get pretty good at it — and you will know it (and if you don’t, well, that’s a whole other animal not being discussed here).

So ultimately, the Wall Of Suck is your friend; when you hit it, don’t be discouraged…or do be discouraged, and stop wasting time lying to yourself about what it is you really want to do. It’s probably something else. The artists I am most interested in hearing from are the ones that can’t not do what they’re doing (not the ones trying to be famous/rich/loved for it).

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