“Art isn't only a painting. Art is anything that's creative, passionate, and personal. And great art resonates with the viewer, not only with the creator.
What makes someone an artist? I don't think is has anything to do with a paintbrush. There are painters who follow the numbers, or paint billboards, or work in a small village in China, painting reproductions. These folks, while swell people, aren't artists. On the other hand, Charlie Chaplin was an artist, beyond a doubt. So is Jonathan Ive, who designed the iPod. You can be an artists who works with oil paints or marble, sure. But there are artists who work with numbers, business models, and customer conversations. Art is about intent and communication, not substances.
An artists is someone who uses bravery, insight, creativity, and boldness to challenge the status quo. And an artists takes it personally.
That's why Bob Dylan is an artist, but an anonymous corporate hack who dreams up Pop 40 hits on the other side of the glass is merely a marketer. That's why Tony Hsieh, founder of Zappos, is an artists, while a boiler room of telemarketers is simply a scam.
Tom Peters, corporate gadfly and writer, is an artists, even though his readers are businesspeople. He's an artists because he takes a stand, he takes the work personally, and he doesn't care if someone disagrees. His art is part of him, and he feels compelled to share it with you because it's important, not because he expects you to pay him for it.
Art is a personal gift that changes the recipient. The medium doesn't matter. The intent does.
Art is a personal act of courage, something one human does that creates change in another.”
― Seth Godin, Linchpin: Are You Indispensable?
“Capitalism has taught us that every transaction has to be fair, an even trade for goods or services delivered. What artists demonstrate is that linchpin thinking is about delivering gifts that can never be adequately paid for. As soon as it’s part of a system, it’s not art. Artists shake things up. They invent as they go; they respond to inputs and create surprising new outputs….Customers love artists. So do investors. That’s because art represents a chance to improve the status quo, not just make ti cheaper. Art builds a community, and the community creates value for all.”
“The magic of the gift system is that the gift is voluntary, not part of a contract. The gift binds the recipient to the giver, and both of them to the community. A contract isolates individuals, with money as the connector. A gift binds them instead.”
"Let's talk about picking yourself. All of us are surrounded by people who can't wait to be picked. Authors used to need to be on Oprah, we want to be picked by our local political party. We want to be picked our boss. We get picked, which authorizes us to do art.
But gatekeepers don't have all the power anymore. If you want to make a record, make a record. Put it on iTunes. Pick yourself. If you want to write, write. Build a blog. If you want to start a software company, you don't need a permit, you don't need anything. You just start it. And so we see authors and writer and singers and entrepreneurs and anyone who wants to, because we're all one clock away from each other. Raise your hand and say, "I'm in. Here's what I make. Here's what I do."
"Everything you do is either going to raise your average or lower it.
The next hire.
The quality of the chickpeas you serve.
The service experience on register 4.
Each interaction is a choice. A choice to raise your average or lower it.
Progress is almost always a series of choices, an inexorable move toward mediocrity, or its opposite."
People don't believe what you tell them. They rarely believe what you show them. They often believe what their friends tell them and they always believe what they tell themselves
I love these application questions:
Point to your personal website
Show us some of the projects you’ve led that have shipped and made an impact
Show us work you’ve done on the clock, and how you made it work
Are you restless? What do you make or do in your spare time that leaves a trail and makes an impact?
Find a particularly lame example of UX on the web and fix it into something better than good
What’s the best lesson you’ve learned from Steve Krug or Steve McConnell?
Point to a blog post that changed the way you think about connecting with people online
Have you created anything worth watching on Vimeo or YouTube?
Where do you work now? What’s great about it?
My client, Tiffany Jana, gave a talk on managing unconscious bias in the workplace and beyond. Seth Godin is the keynote alter today and Tiffany remembered that I am a big fan and invited me to come. Amazingly thoughtful, that one.