It’s funny to me that the singer on that show inspired all this talk of ‘art vs career’ because right at her side was what I thought to be a perfect example of what I’m saying. Quentin Tarantino. At least up ’till recently when he decided he was done making movies (but hey, this interview thing they were doing was back around 2006, so at the time he exemplified my perspective). The way I look at it, the two (art and career) aren’t mutually exclusive. You don’t compromise your art for your career. But…
That, to me, seems like one of the best ways to make a career.
Seems like a contradiction, doesn’t it. It’s not. It’s not even a paradox. This really boils down to art being important, far more than career, but if you have any goddamn sense the two are as connected as heart and mind. Intellect by itself it useless, heart without reason is awe-inspiring, and the heart being guided, supported, and enabled by a clever mind is better still. The whole career thing itself isn’t important. But you only have one worth noting if it’s one you can put your heart in, and when you find something you can do that with and make money….
That’s it right there. You can have one or the other, or you can have both and let them work at cross-purposes with silly mental gymnastics to justify it to yourself, or you can build a career on the foundation of your art. Your passion. Create what you want to, how you want to, and do it full-tilt. That’s the kind of sincere, authentic art I believe in. Do it over and over again and you’ve got yourself a track record, a side effect. A career. Some people don’t need or want that. I don’t know that I really do. But the thing is… there’s also no rule on what defines a career.
Marilyn Manson makes music. He’s a career rock star. Part of what defines that decades long career though is all the other different shit he’s done. Wrote an autiobiography, wrote an (as of yet unpublished) novel. Got into acting here and there. Started selling his paintings. Has his own brand of absinthe. Get what I’m saying? That kind of diversity right there pretty much shows that just because you establish a career for yourself, a level of fame, or whatever, doesn’t mean it can’t eveolve. It does not have to be a trap.
The funny thing about all of this is…
If what you’re doing is important enough to you that you would risk any ‘career’ you’ve got conceptualized in your head, you only make it more noteworthy. Unless you fail, but if you’re following your heart and you want it bad enough, can you fail? I don’t think so. When you truly want something to happen, you always find a way. Make a living out of that and there are no real chains.
Just tricks of the mind.