I’m in a rather fertile working period right now, and have been for the past few months. I’ve actually been enjoying it quite a bit, as I have some challenging and interesting projects in front of me. I’ve mentioned previously that I’m in the process of writing a book about creativity, and I’ve also been developing a new series for an exhibit next year. Another mural is in the works as well, which will be a lot of fun. But the thing is, I’ve been feeling blah about social media ever since the start of the year. It seems not really necessary for the work that’s before me right now. It’s like, this work is going to get done whether I post about it or not.
I came across a tweet from a singer/songwriter who recently followed me on twitter that expressed a simple yet profound thought. She basically said to another twitter user, in response to an inquiry, that she had never stopped writing, but had just taken a break from “putting her face on it.” And that she was now starting to perform and release music again. This sentiment described so well to me the alternation between outer promotion and inner work that the creative life seems to cycle through on a regular basis. "Putting one's face" on something is only part of the process. I think this has always been true of the creative rhythm. Only now, in the era of social media, we’re constantly fed the message that there is never an inner period, there is only an outer one. And furthermore, if you’re not posting about your work or making it outward in some fashion, it’s not even happening. It’s like real life gets obscured by the online image you project.
If this isn’t a formula for unhappiness, I don’t know what is. Experiences of legitimate happiness are only ever found in “real” life. So if we’re constantly being told to disconnect from real life by seeking solace in an online world, where does that leave us at the end of the day? I don’t know. Not somewhere good, if you ask me. Regardless, I think I’m going to enjoy this flow of creative work and let it be offline for a bit. The outside world will return soon enough.
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