Posts tagged ‘art’

2013

hearing

When I sit down to write a book, I do not say to myself, ‘I am going to produce a work of art.’ I write it because there is some lie that I want to expose, some fact to which I want to draw attention, and my initial concern is to get a hearing.

George Orwell, “Why I Write”  (1946)

2013

all

We are all apprentices in a craft where no one ever becomes a master.

Ernest Hemingway on writers, New York Journal-American (1961)

2013

keep on

I keep on making what I can’t do yet in order to learn to be able to do it.

Vincent van Gogh, letter to Theo (1885)

2013

lines

Art, like morality, consists of drawing the line somewhere.

G. K. Chesterton, Illustrated London News (1928)

2012

tell

Vigorous writing is concise. A sentence should contain no unnecessary words, a paragraph no unnecessary sentences, for the same reason that a drawing should have no unnecessary lines and a machine no unnecessary parts. This requires not that the writer make all his sentences short, or that he avoid all detail and treat his subjects only in outline, but that every word tell.

William Strunk, Jr., Elements of Style (1918)

2012

taste

The first couple years that you’re making stuff, what you’re making isn’t so good — it’s not that great. It’s trying to be good, it has ambition to be good, but it’s not quite that good. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, your taste is still killer and your taste is good enough that you can tell that what you’re making is kind of a disappointment to you. A lot of people never get past that phase and a lot of people at that point quit.

And the thing I would just like say to you with all my heart is that most everybody I know who does interesting creative work, they went through a phase of years where they had really good taste and they could tell what they were making wasn’t as good as they wanted it to be. We knew that it didn’t have the special thing that we wanted it to have and the thing to do is — everybody goes through that. And for you to go through it, if you’re going through it right now, if you’re just getting out of that phase or if you’re just starting off and you’re entering into that phase, you’ve got to know it’s totally normal and the most important possible thing you can do is do a lot of work. Do a huge volume of work.

Ira Glass, “Ira Glass on Storytelling” (2009)

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