Get started, keep going

The two things I have learned in my journey making art and other things, is you have to get started, and you have to keep going. I didn’t think I would get much out of art and maker self-help style books, but I found there’s definitely something in there that makes me think.

Austin Kleon was recently on the Design Matters podcast. I have had his book “Steal Like an Artist” for a long time, but I never got around to reading it. After listening to the interview, I checked it out. The second principle is “Don’t wait until you know who you are to get started.” Now if you have been around social media, and consumed other media from artists and makers, you have heard something like this before, I know I have. It doesn’t matter, it still works every time I hear it, and it reminds me, and inspires me to get back out there and make something.

Going back to the first principle and the title of the book, “Steal like an artist”, it just reminds you that there is nothing new, and everything is influenced by everything else. So don’t worry that your work will be influenced by others, you can’t stop it. Just remember to be influenced by a greater variety of things, and the more you look around and pay attention, the more you’ll take these things in, mix them up, and turn them into your own thing. There’s a great quote by Goethe in the book “We are shaped and fashioned by what we love.” That’s great, and you can see it happening all around, if you pay attention.

My final point for today, don’t just get started, keep going! Kleon’s third book is called “Keep Going”, and he wrote it because he needed to read it, he needed to hear the message to keep going. So get other there, make something, and keep doing it. Look around, and see.