The other day I linked to a post by Mary Jaksch at her blog write to done where she was having a conversation with Seth Godin. Today she continues that conversation. The following interaction really resonated with me. It explains why I follow the people I do online in the most succinct way I have seen yet…
Mary: Coming back to art, you write in your book, ‘’Art is the unique work of a human being, work that touches another.’ What do you actually mean by ‘work that touches another’?
Seth: There’s a light switch on the wall across the desk from me. I’ve never noticed this switch before. If someone came in the middle of the night and changed it to a different light switch, I wouldn’t notice. This light switch is not art. This light switch is a piece of functional mechanics.
For it to be art, it has to be something I care about, something that resonates with me, something that I notice in a personal way, and the only thing we connect with in our lives are things that touch us at that level.
We do not connect with utility. We connect with things that change us.
When we connect, we’re willing to spread the word, we’re willing to pay, and we’re willing to care. We want to be part of that thing and, more importantly, part of the person who made that thing.
The reason I wrote this book is that the number of artists alive today is more than ever before in history, but it’s a fraction of what that number could be. What human beings want, once they have enough food and shelter, is meaning. We want to matter. We want to engage with people who matter. We want to do something worth talking about. That’s our shortage. We don’t have a shortage of stuff; we have a shortage of caring.
Read the rest of the conversation at How to become a Successful Writer: Seth Godin in Conversation.
I don’t know about you, but for me, that is exactly what keeps me writing, keeps me linking to people I discover, keeps me reading… It’s “to engage with people who matter.” At least, people who matter to me. This is me trying to make “my” art… Trying to engage with people whose “art” touches me in a way that makes me want to share their art with others… Trying to encourage these artists to keep creating.
Over the years I have been writing here and on my other sites I sometimes lose my direction. I get distracted and end up posting links without the personal muse that makes it worthwhile (I hope) for the reader. But, by reading the posts of many extraordinary “artists”, I find myself inspired to keep trying to create my own art.
“You have to find a journey worthy of your heart and your soul.” Seth Godin
So…With that in mind, shall we walk the journey together? Would you like to join me in finding the path worth walking? First, though, go read the rest of the conversation between Mary and Seth. It’s worth the time… You could call it a work of art.
- We Are All Artists: Seth Godin (coffeemuses.com)