Mr Lynch attributes his ability to catch creative ideas to his 35 years of practicing the Transcendental Meditation Technique. I attribute my fear of severed human ears in fields to David Lynch, but that’s neither here nor there. Moving on…
The David Lynch Foundation is:
…dedicated to providing students with the opportunity to learn how to meditate. The David Lynch Foundation funds and implements stress reducing programs that improve creativity, brain functioning, and academic performance. These programs have also been documented to reduce ADHD and other learning disorders, anxiety, depression, and substance abuse.
While DLF.tv is
The new Online TV Channel that celebrates consciousness, creativity and bliss. DLF.TV will showcase high quality video content from the David Lynch Foundation events, compelling profiles and documentaries, exclusive content from David Lynch, and explore all aspects of creativity.
Good, good. Anything to get the juice juiced. Love the idea of the “Daily David” – basically an interview series where the man himself “speaks candidly about anything and everything ranging from filmmaking to consciousness”.
I’m very curious about this, since my brain is one woody and tangled forest that I desire to trek into and find new species within. Here’s D talking about his first meditation.
And just for fun, un-realted to the DLF, here is one of my favorite DL moments.
No, not really. It’s just that the third installment of Ze Frank’s “Simple questions to ask when planning a contribution-based project” was posted today and I got to reading it, like us readers do in our RRS reader feeders. Anyway, today’s installment meanders a little into his own creative process, then into the sticky weeds of awareness of audience.
On his creative process:
The first state is an introduction. This is where an idea presents itself in my mind. These early ideas are soft and fuzzy and can’t be fully grasped. So I turn them around, and tug at them and try to look at them from a number of different angles. I might imagine what it will be like to execute the idea, to walk myself through the experience of doing what needs to be done. I might imagine what the finished product will look like. I might also imagine how someone else will perceive the finished product, or how someone might react when they hear about it. I look at it as an early vetting process. Does it excite me? Will it be tedious to make? Will other people like it? All of this happens in my mind. And because the idea is just an idea, and the audience I am imagining is imagined, there is plenty of wiggle room. Potential criticism is met with potential alterations, potential praise is met with potential false modesty. This is the first place where an awareness of audience comes into play, but the awareness is often broad and non-specific.
Ramble begins here:
I’m not working on anything collaborative, so this is a bit off the track of his post, but the idea of perceived audience affecting the result intrigues me.
For me, at the very early stages of an idea, I think my imagined audience is a gaggle of me, myself, and ‘I’s. I don’t get to the “Will other people like it?” stage until I’m a bit further down the line and one of the ‘me’s in the bunch says “Hey, what do you think Mum will do when she sees how messed up your mind is?”
This is followed swiftly by self-doubt, then the squirreling away of the project so that no-one will ever discover its awesome and inappropriate power. No bird is released from the creative cage. No bear is released to the wild. My brain remains crowded with beasts and avian mutants.
Or to put it another way – nothing gets produced. My greatest flaw.
The one audience I know I have is my friends and family, but the only time I really think about them in the process is when I know I’m doing something they’re not going to recognize as me. Case in point.
I recently got some feedback on my Zephyr video from a good friend. He hadn’t said anything about it, which I took to mean he didn’t like it and was holding back for fear of hurting my feelings. So, I did what any sane person would do – I waited until he was drunk and asked him, point blank, if he’d watched it. He didn’t dig it.
“It was just so serious,” he said. “When I read the SHNoos, it’s fun. I hear your voice and you don’t sound that serious in my head.”
Weirdly enough, I took this feedback really well. I surprised myself, actually. I wanted to try something different with Zephyr, to see if it would attract a new audience – one that didn’t know me. As an experiment, it’s sort of worked and failed at the same time.
Regular readers of the SHNoos aren’t particularly jazzed with it. It’s off brand. The problem with an audience who knows you is that THEY KNOW YOU. They’ve seen you fall up stairs, and know how clumsy you are. They know what you’re like when you’re drunk, and how moody you are at times. So when they watched it, it was…different. But people who had never read any of my stuff, and had no perception of it or me, gave me some positive feedback. We’re not talking great numbers here btw, all I needed was three strangers to say “wow, powerful” and I deemed the whole experiment a success.
I wanted to make something, I made it, I put it out there, and now I’m moving on to the next thing. Best of all, I learned something from it.
Weird, I’ve gotten all the way to this paragraph and I’m not really sure where I’m going with this. I guess I’m trying to say that if you think too much about your immediate audience – the people who know you – and about how they’re going to react to what you’re trying to do, you’ll never get anything done.
Your perceived audience has to be a mindset, not people you know. If I spent any time at all worrying about what my mother might think, I’d never do anything. Although it should be said that I won’t be getting a tattoo any time soon, because she has some kind of radar for that. Just do your thing. Everyone might be expecting a hilarious novel with you as the star, but you might be creating a dark and brooding tome where everyone is slain by a ferret-wielding psychopath. Hypothetically…
It’s all ok.
The first audience you have to please is yourself. Just get shit out there!
Read parts 1, 2 and 3 of Ze’s piece here. Also be sure to check out the interviews about audience and the creative process mentioned at the end of part 3.
You don’t have to suffer to show suffering. Awesome.