By Helena Smith
Steal Like an Artist
A human being is the by-product of two other human beings. You can never really tell the percentage split because somehow the genes from each creator mix up to create an individual totally unique.
This has always fascinated me. Being the eldest of three, I am just as different too sisters as they are to each other. Two parents managed to produced three, totally unique individuals.
This meandering thought is led from reading Austin Kleon’s Steal Like an Artist. I ordered it a week ago and it just landed on my doorstep. Kleon is making the point that what we choose to consume is mashed up inside us so that we can give birth to little unique ideas that then need nurturing to become fully grown ‘things’ we did in fact birth ourselves.
This is a concept I should have bought into earlier. In the quest for original it’s easy to dismiss too many routes as being taken. Having ideas and then putting a red line through them as you discover they have been executed in some variety at some stage can become a familiar task. On one hand it’s exhilarating to kill and demand more lateral of yourself, but on the other, that determination to be one hundred percent different can lead you down a path of ‘WTF is going on here’.
I think I thought earlier on that at this time of the year I would be gracefully tinkering away with our executions of strong, solid ideas and just preparing the details for our big day. But if that was the case I should have known better. Either way, I’m not ashamed to say we are still going at ninety miles an hour, writing strategy, executing and learning every single day.
As it can sometimes seem, figuring out how to weave unexpected, simple, sticky ideas into a strategy that can talk to an audience is really very fun.