No Alarms Club

Myth of the Starving Artist

Episode Summary

In this episode, Garrett shares his notes from the Introduction chapter of Jeff Goins' book Real Artists Don't Starve. We take a look at Goins' terms like "New Renaissance," "Thriving Artist," and his 12 Rules of the New Renaissance.

Episode Notes

Episode Transcription

Garrett: 

[00:00:00] Hello and welcome to the first official episode of the No Alarms Club podcast. My name is Garrett. 

[00:00:07]In this episode, we're going to start reading Real Artists Don't Starve by Jeff Goins. 

[00:00:15] I'm not going to read you the whole thing. But I did take notes as I'm reading it. And so the next 14 or so episodes will be one chapter at a time of the notes I took and how I plan to apply them to my life. 

[00:00:34]So this first chapter is actually the introduction chapter, titled Myth of the Starving Artist. 

[00:00:41]Goins starts off talking about how Michelangelo, the artist known for painting the Sistine Chapel, was actually very rich. 

[00:00:50] He was worth what would be about $47 million today. That's the top 1%, right? 

[00:00:57]I've wanted to be a musician since I was very young, it was kind of my first love, I guess. 

[00:01:06] And people always told me to have a fallback because they believed the Starving Artist Myth. 

[00:01:13]So I didn't pursue that as a career path because everybody told me there was no way to be a musician successfully. 

[00:01:22] I didn't even really practice guitar that much because to me it was just a silly hobby. 

[00:01:27]Then when I was 17 or 18, I started my first media company and I want to put media and company in quotes together and separately because it wasn't really officially a company and media is sort of an ambiguous term. 

[00:01:44] But this was when I was 17 or 18, and I was taking photos and doing some graphic design and web design for local bands. 

[00:01:52]In Real Artists Don't Starve, Jeff Goins asks, what does it mean to be a real artist? He says, it means we spend our time working on what matters most to us and that we don't need anyone's permission to create. 

[00:02:09] That's the life that I want. And that's the life that I am building with No Alarms Club. 

[00:02:16]Goins uses the terms, New Renaissance and Thriving Artists to define and describe what we are working to achieve here. 

[00:02:27]So he has 12 rules that we should live by. 

[00:02:31]Let me pull it open so I can read them to you. I hope he doesn't mind giving this part of the book away. 

[00:02:36]I do highly recommend you purchase this book and read it yourself. It's fantastic. 

[00:02:41]So the 12 principals every Thriving Artist lives by or the New Renaissance as he calls them. 

[00:02:47]Number one. The starving artist believes you must be born an artist. The thriving artist knows you must become one. 

[00:02:55]Number two, the starving artist strives to be original. The thriving artist steals from his influences. 

[00:03:04] Number three, the starving artist believes he or she has enough talent, the thriving artist apprentices under a master. 

[00:03:14] Four, the starving artist is stubborn about everything. The thriving artist is stubborn about the right things. 

[00:03:22] Five, the starving artist waits to be noticed. The thriving artist cultivates patrons. 

[00:03:29] Six, the starving artist believes they can be creative anywhere. The thriving artist goes where creative work is already happening. 

[00:03:39] Seven, the starving artist always works alone. The thriving artist collaborates with others. 

[00:03:46]Eight, the starving artist does his work in private, the thriving artist practices in public. 

[00:03:54] Nine, the starving artist works for free. The thriving artist always works for something. 

[00:04:01] 10, the starving artist sells out too soon. The thriving artist owns their work. 

[00:04:09] 11, the starving artist masters one craft. The thriving artist masters many. 

[00:04:15] And the final principle, number 12, the starving artist despises the need for money. The thriving artist makes money to make art. 

[00:04:25] I wrote some notes down on each one of these. Basically my thoughts on each one. 

[00:04:31] The first one, the starving artist believes you must be born an artist. The thriving artist knows you must become one. 

[00:04:39] This is definitely true. You can practice and learn pretty much any skill. 

[00:04:45] I definitely don't think I was born with any skills. 

[00:04:49]I've had friends throughout my life that seemed to have been born with innate skills. When I was in elementary school, I had a friend named Charles who was very good at drawing. And I know he practiced a lot, but he also just seemed to have some sort of innate skill that he was born with. 

[00:05:08] Another friend of mine in high school, Adam, is a fantastic musician and I know he also practiced a lot, but it just seemed like he just grasped the concept so much easier than I ever did. 

[00:05:23] There are definitely things that now in my thirties, I feel like I am good at, but I don't feel like there was anything I was born good at. These are all things that I have practiced. 

[00:05:33] Particularly writing. Writing, I think, is my strongest skill. 

[00:05:36] I'm also really good with people. 

[00:05:38]Under the second principle, the starving artist strives to be original. The thriving artist steals from his influences. 

[00:05:46] I don't really have anything written down much for this. I definitely am going to need to read this chapter to understand it more. 

[00:05:53] I did write down that this reminds me, I should read Austin Kleon's books. He wrote a book called Steal Like An Artist, I believe. As well as some other books within that realm of knowledge. 

[00:06:08]Number three, the starving artist believes he has enough talent. The thriving artist apprentices under a master. 

[00:06:15]This is kind of terrifying to me. Finding a mentor is tough. 

[00:06:20] So I'm looking forward to reading this chapter and I hope that Goins explains a comfortable way to do this. 

[00:06:28] Four, the starving artist is stubborn about everything. The thriving artist is stubborn about the right things. 

[00:06:34]I'm interested in learning more about what the right and wrong things to be stubborn are because I am concerned that I perhaps am stubborn about the wrong things instead of the right things. So I'm looking forward to that chapter as well. 

[00:06:46]Five, the starving artist waits to be noticed. The thriving artist cultivates patrons. 

[00:06:53] I am betting that this has something to do with social media. And we will find out when we get there. 

[00:07:01]Six, the starving artist believes he can be creative anywhere. The thriving artist goes where creative work is already happening.

[00:07:10] I'm hoping that this doesn't mean I have to move because I actually like where I live. 

[00:07:17] Number seven, the starving artist always works alone. The thriving artist collaborates with others. 

[00:07:24] Collaboration is great, but I often have trouble finding like minded people. And I think that some of that might be that I am too much of a control freak when it comes to my art and things that I create. 

[00:07:38] Maybe I should just start collaborating with anybody I can, just to expose myself to different art. 

[00:07:46]So that chapter should help me quite a bit. 

[00:07:49]Eight, the starving artist does his work in private. The thriving artist practices in public. 

[00:07:55]I also feel like this might be about using social media. 

[00:07:59]But I guess we'll see when we get there.

[00:08:01]Number nine, the starving artist works for free. The thriving artist always works for something. 

[00:08:07]I guess we'll find out when we get there, what something means, but one thing that I live by is never work for free and don't work for exposure because that's kind of a BS thing. 

[00:08:18]10, the starving artist sells out too soon. The thriving artist owns his work. 

[00:08:24] I'm hoping that this has something to do with licensing. 

[00:08:27] Licensing art is something that's always been interesting to me. 

[00:08:30] I first learned about it in high school, a band that I listened to, Mindless Self Indulgence, instead of signing to a record label license their music to record labels so that they still own the music, but still had the marketing power of a record label behind them. 

[00:08:44] They went on to be quite successful. 

[00:08:47]11, the starving artist masters one craft. The thriving artist masters many. 

[00:08:53] This really speaks to me as someone who enjoys creating art through many different mediums. I like making music. I like working with video. I like working with graphics. I like recording podcasts. I like writing. 

[00:09:07] I love writing. It's my second love after music. 

[00:09:10]As someone who always is craving to create new things through many different mediums, I'm hoping that this chapter 11 sort of reinforces what I feel deep inside about wanting to just create across as many different mediums as I possibly can. 

[00:09:28]And number 12, the starving artist despises the need for money. The thriving artist makes money to make art. 

[00:09:37] This one will require a bit of a mindset shift for me. 

[00:09:42] I kind of do despise the need for money, and I generally have lost faith in people to maintain sustainable capitalism. 

[00:09:50] I'm not against capitalism necessarily. I just feel that what is sustainable capitalism is not where America is headed. 

[00:10:01]I'm concerned that we are drifting further and further from a sustainable economy in America and more towards a greed based economy that is just not going to work out in the end. 

[00:10:14]And because of that, we're going to end up in a situation where nobody's happy. 

[00:10:19]But I'll leave the economics, politics, and social issues to a different podcast. 

[00:10:26]I want to end this episode with one more thing. Jeff Goins says being a starving artist is a choice. And I do believe that. 

[00:10:35]In my over a decade of experience working on the internet, specifically at marketing, I have come to the conclusion that you can pretty much make money with almost anything on the internet. 

[00:10:50]I actually talk a lot about that on my website, Online Business ONE. That's OnlineBusiness.ONE, spelled out O N E. 

[00:10:59]The Online Business ONE program is all about starting your own online business so that you don't have to wake up to an alarm. 

[00:11:08] Which is what this whole podcast is all about. 

[00:11:13] And the funding for this podcast. I have no sponsors. And that's by choice. I don't ever want sponsors. 

[00:11:21]And I hate when a podcast has long commercials. 

[00:11:24]So to fund this podcast, I have the Online Business ONE program. 

[00:11:29] You can go check it out. There's a 14 day free trial. OnlineBusiness.ONE

[00:11:34]Next episode, we're going to talk about chapter one of Real Artists Don't Starve by Jeff Goins. 

[00:11:42] That chapter is titled You Aren't Born An Artist. 

[00:11:46]If you enjoy this podcast, please go leave a review in your favorite podcast platform. I would really appreciate it. 

[00:11:55] Again, my name is Garrett and you're listening to the No Alarms Club podcast. 

[00:11:59] I will see you in the next episode.