Blogs » Musings On Muses » Two Cents Into The Wisdom Machine?


Every artist should approach their craft with an open mind. With that said, keeping one’s mind open to the input of others is still sometimes a touchy subject. Creative control is a minefield for those who mean well and a lot of the detonators have hair-trigger trip-hammers.

As headway is made thru any creative endeavor blindsides from the rest of the world are not uncommon. I won’t count how many times I’ve offered a lyric for perusal to someone only to have them immediately begin to pressure me to modify it. Most often they jump in on the fly and without any pre-thought. It can be unsettling but I’ve learned to deal with it respectfully. I know that if I let them play their scenario out fully I might just have a revelation and see where they were coming from more clearly. In any case corrections and margin scratches can easily be undone. Their patience has allowed me their attention. My patience has to go as far if not farther.

The wrong approach to outside input would be to cut them short. Disrespect on any level is still bad taste and a horrible character flaw. We artists inhabit a world of highly varied individuals and our journeys thru creative processes, no matter how personal, are best worn on the sleeve with at least a pinch of pride.

There are no levels immune to outside interference. There are no notes or words mutable from earshot. Can the painter hide the mix of colors under opaque hues and still accomplish the image in mind? Will the reader understand the story when the writer leaves out some descriptive or other details? Without a face on the statue, who could it be?

For me, recording music is always fun and adventurous. The end product may have rough edges but if I’m satisfied sufficiently then I am done. Being the ‘amateur’ that I am there are many times when people have commented about one song or another with suggestions for changes. “Turn this up.” “Turn that down.” “You should have used a different sound on that.” Quashing outward displays of frustration is par for the course. Such salt can flavor life if we let it. Such flavoring can build character in many ways, good or bad, depending on the individual’s mindset.