I’ve talked before about the joy of having work/life synced with the natural world. Well, our intense Minnesota Winters toss me into a deeeeeeeep hibernation. Today, it’s sunny and freshly covered in snow, but -1- single degree here. Hibernation is here. I love it. For me, it’s a slowing down and looking inward, noticing where I am in my world and life, who surrounds me, what’s working, what’s not, and finally(hopefully) establishing tools/systems/strategies for growing forward.
I’ve begun the looking inward stage, and it's heady and very very scattered. Top of the audit and asses list is the business side of CHEERIUP. I preached to my Design/Art students that “successful ideas need to be equal parts heart, hand, and head.” I’ve focused on the heart and the hand of CHEERIUP, but have middle-childed the head. I’m excited to bond with this overlooked child, but there are a lot of big questions to answer first. Ugh, where to start?!
Another Art School sermon, “Start anywhere." These are a few things ringing like a bell for me right now, not exactly sure why, but maybe I’ll know in a couple months. Enjoy!
Podcasts feel huge to me right now. As in, THE media space for my generation. In tone, in content, in reform.
Call Your Girlfriend I’ve been a fan of Ann Friedman's work for years, but love hearing her in this informal manner. And Aminatou Sow, pleeeeease run for President. Or at least, please be my next door neighbor? Crushing on these two women…as female forces, as two frank -and- loving friends, as human beings, as on-point professionals. And hoping they inspire more female voices in podcasting!
Start Up A series about what happens when someone who knows nothing about business starts one. YES. Relating hard to that notion as a solopreneur trying to make a living via gut and passion. It’s generous, transparent, inspiring, and real. My favorite details: 1) The strong -and- emotionally intelligent men involved. The way Alex and Matthew talk about their feelings to each other feels new and inspiring. 2) Conversations consulting with their wives about their unfolding project are not only included in the podcast, but are highly valued by both men in terms of how they move forward. THANK YOU Alex and Matthew! Art imitates life, for once. 3) And did they really just transform commercials into real content I might want to connect with vs. mute out, skip past, or resent? Huh.
Making It, by Evgeny Morozov for The New Yorker: It’s pretty annoying the Tech sector has now claimed the terms “Maker” and “Maker Movement,” but so many details of this piece have stuck with me in terms of the current climate and economy of art/design/making/manufacturing and our relationship between physical objects and technology. It’s a dense article, but here’s some random and out-of-context tidbits…
“The craft impulse has become dispersed in millions of do-it-yourself projects and basement workshops, where men and women have sought the wholeness, the autonomy, and the joy they cannot find on the job or in domestic drudgery.”
“The maker era might not be upon us yet, but the maker movement has arrived. Just who are these people? Like the Arts and Crafts movement—a mélange of back-to-the-land simplifiers, socialists, anarchists, and tweedy art connoisseurs—the makers are a diverse bunch.”
“He repeatedly blames screens and personal computers for our lack of contact with physical objects. “The digital natives are starting to hunger for life beyond the screen,” he writes. “Making something that starts virtual but quickly becomes tactile and usable in the everyday world is satisfying in a way that pure pixels are not.” Many aesthetes in the early Arts and Crafts debates complained about machines, rather than about the economic conditions under which they were used. Anderson, likewise, sees “pure pixels” as the source of discontent, as opposed to the uses to which those pixels are put (the boring spreadsheet, the senseless PowerPoint deck).
“the democratization of invention”
“personal manufacturing will undermine the clout of large corporations. It might even liberate labor in a way that the Arts and Crafts radicals hadn’t anticipated, with office workers abandoning their jobs in pursuit of meaningful self-employment amid sensors and 3-D printers.”
“in a world where everyone is an entrepreneur, it’s hard work getting others excited about funding your project. Money goes to those who know how to attract attention…”