The Lords Of Discipline

Discussion in 'Philosophy' started by fate_faith_change_chains, Sep 2, 2004.

  1. The Lords Of Discipline...that is how I see for some part the many
    great photographers or artists (such a crappy word) in any field that
    I believe (with others) have made such an important body of work that
    can't be overlooked. I think the artist needs to maintain a lot of
    discipline in order to create a body of work that can stand on it's
    own. "Limitations are set in order to go all the way" >> John
    Frusciante. Well, I couldn't have said it better when talking about
    not losing focus in expressing oneself true the making of 'art',
    whatever that may be... I mean, I think that any artist first must
    get out of all the static that surrounds him or her, for example :
    hanging aroyund on the internet on forums like this could be some
    major static for the one who want's to express and create cause the
    overload on info could conflict with the artists intention to create
    something that comes completely from his/her own...On the other hand,
    sometimes the overload on info could be the trigger for new ideas but
    when and where does one draw the line in search of their own true
    expression? Anyway, I think that discipline ( as in a zen state of
    discipline ) is the first elemental keyfactor in expressing oneself :
    you first have to 'limit yourself in order to go all the way'...in
    order to follow your 'moira'...the path of the hero...the higher
    goal...
     
  2. Phylo? Are you asking a question or making a statement? That point wasn't too clear to me:)
     
  3. he's "calling into question", and I think he's right. A life in balance sometimes needs a tilt. A life out of balance sometimes needs a steadying hand. Choose what works for you. And keep an eye on yourself... t<p>"everything in moderation, including moderation"
     
  4. You are scratching on an interesting topic and this thread can develop in an interesting way if responds will be disciplined. In order to achieve discipline we have to find the inner balance point the inner master that rules supreme, how then otherwise who is disciplined to whom or what?
    The basic is to silence the mind and remain tranquil, that alone is a discipline and not an easy one.
    To me all activity has to be based on a rock solid fundament of inner poise and peace. Any meaningful inspiration will dawn then in a soulful way.
     
  5. The estimable Bruce Pinkard addressed this question in one of his books. It's like being a jazz musician, you have to practice the scales and arpeggios until they are second-nature, then, when the situation arises, you don't have to think, it's all completely fluent.
     
  6. "Are you asking a question or making a statement?"

    Not so much a 'statement' but more a believe that it's necessary to keep focus that is based on discipline in expressing oneself true the act of creating something with meaning. I don't think there's such a thing as the casual artist who just does the things he/she does just because he or she want's to do it or feels like doing it 'cause some 'magic moment' happened before their eyes, that's just one of the myths when thinking about great artists. I think it finally all comes down to rationality and focused thinking wich is somewhat in contrast to the freedom of expression, but needed to go to that freedom of expression.

    Now, as for the question : that could be : how does one keep this discipline or focus or how does one create it? Where do you draw the line in setting limitations (>limitations that are set in order to avoid the 'roadblocks' on the path of creation) to go all the way? When does one has to stop thinking about it instead of just doing it?
     
  7. "Now, as for the question : that could be : how does one keep this
    discipline or focus or how does one create it?"

    By mastering it.


    "Where do you draw the line in setting limitations (>limitations that
    are set in order to avoid the 'roadblocks' on the path of creation)
    to go all the way?"

    Limitations are placed by the artist. It is a personal judgement on
    what limitations the artist wants to work with.

    "When does one has to stop thinking about it instead of just doing
    it?"

    When it has been mastered.
     
  8. Thank you for the clarification. I'll now try to respond to your original comment.
    Phylo wrote
    I think the artist needs to maintain a lot of discipline in order to create a body of work that can stand on it's own.
    So ask the question in regard to the need of creating a body of work. An individual image should stand on it's own. A weak image needs a supporting cast. Did the Mona Lisa need a body of work behind it to give the image a stage? How many works of art can most ascribe to Leonardo? Two, maybe three? Ask about doing both, the act of creating an individual, stand on it's own image and a series of images that one might create for a presentation of theme of images. Realize, anybody that demands a series of images in order for an image to stand on it's own, has emotional issues they need to deal with.
    The confusion I see in your over all question is that noted art which is created has to resonate with the curator of the museum or the gallery and then it's promotability becomes an act of commercialism. So now we've move into the question of the acceptability of art and the question which revolves aroung good ole boy's network of art. Or, if you will, the question of: Is avant garde art really nothing more than "pop art" in the making?
    Other then the commercial aspect, it's incumbent upon the artist to be disciplined enough to be able to sucessfully render their photographic ideas to papter or to resist outside influences which will cause them to change the direction of their think to mirror others. If they're successful in their mind, then that's all that matters as the artist is out to represent their think, not what others think; although what others think does complete the image:) If the rest of the world doesn't agree with the artist, it's not important, as it all depends on how notable one wishes to become. Are you about your art or being noticed?
    "Limitations are set in order to go all the way" >> John Frusciante.
    I'd say "goal" is a better choice of word then "limitation".
    Well, I couldn't have said it better when talking about not losing focus in expressing oneself true the making of 'art', whatever that may be...
    Your art is what ever you want it to be, with or without the approval of others. Again, are you looking for approval or intent on sharing your vision with the world? Screw the critics, unless being noticed is what you're about.
    I mean, I think that any artist first must get out of all the static that surrounds him or her,...
    But doesn't that static create the dynamics in which the artist draws on to create their view of the world?
    for example : hanging around on the internet on forums like this could be some major static for the one who want's to express and create...
    And then again, all this forum static can make one stronger in their ability to create an image that successfully represents their ideologies:) And then again it can so distract that one isn't capable of producing anything that remotely represents that what they want to create.
    ... cause the overload on info could conflict with the artists intention to create something that comes completely from his/her own...On the other hand, sometimes the overload on info could be the trigger for new ideas
    Now you have to ask the personal question, is this a good thing or a bad thing and is this what you want? From this conflict can come your new ideas.
    ...but when and where does one draw the line in search of their own true expression?
    Again, are you creating for yourself, sharing your view of life with the world, or are you trying to create a psudeo art world that fits into the world of the critics who need to be pleased (sucking up) in order to become a notable? In other words, is it about art or being noticed? And is it really about promoting yourself or your art? And is a line in the sand what you're all about?
    Anyway, I think that discipline (as in a zen state of discipline) is the first elemental keyfactor in expressing oneself:...
    Remember, "Zen" is just another word for mind control:)
    ...you first have to 'limit yourself in order to go all the way'...in order to follow your 'moira'...the path of the hero...the higher goal...
    You're on your own with this one as this is where we depart thinking. I'm good to go with goals and putting what you want to show the world to paper but I could give a rat's patootie in becoming a photographic hero as the independent streak in me would rather be a rat's patootie then a heroic suck up:)
    If I said anything in my above that's confusing or upsetting, I'll be happy to try and clarify any confusion and assuage any offense.
    As a suggestion, try tilting at a few windmills, have a good time and screw the rest of the bums who might criticized what you have to show the world:)
    Wishing you the best in your quest and hope my above is found encouraging and insightful.
     
  9. There is nothing wrong with a body of work. You can see the link between
    them. The ebb and flow. Certainly a body of work doesn't imply that a
    particular image is weak. It is cool to present a story with many photos. Yes it
    is also interesting to have a nice stand alone image. Either can be rewarding.
    <p>
    As for "Limitations are set in order to go all the way" First off this is kind of
    oxymoronic. But I agree in a way. Certainly self discipline and limitations can
    help you achieve things. Since I was pondering marketing this evening I will
    apply it accordingly. I think this applies to marketing yourself in the art world to
    clients in the sense that.... choosing what you present and being critical of
    what you show the world portrays a certain image. There are definitely many
    artists/photogs that show work they know is not there best or what they are
    really capable of. I'm generalizing here, certainly what I think is mediocre
    another may feel is great yes but...you know what I mean. So I can see in that
    regard where limiting yourself and what you display helps you go all the way.
     
  10. Phylo wrote
    Now, as for the question : that could be : how does one keep this discipline or focus or how does one create it?
    If you will, in the simplist of terms, just by doing it. One gets out of bed, or feeds themselves, without thought as these acts are a requirement of life. But the washing of clothes and the act of brushing of one's teeth requires a commitment to personal hygiene.
    This same commitment is required towards your art. Do you want your art to look like you just got out of bed or do you want it to have a fresh clean well scrubbed look? So in short, this discipline comes from within and a commitment to your artistic efforts or the fullfilling of your artistic need to express your thinking; vision. You, personally, become the driving force.
    Where do you draw the line in setting limitations (>limitations that are set in order to avoid the 'roadblocks' on the path of creation) to go all the way?
    Why would anybody with a vision set limitations to their vision? Roadblocks are simply stop signs and life is filled with stop signs but that's not a good reason to stop one's journey; unless one is lazy. Learn about the stop sign by becoming familiar with that which created the stop sign in the first place. Then once familiar with that which created the stop sign, continue your artistic journey.
    When does one has to stop thinking about it instead of just doing it?
    When one is ready to render said idea to paper.
    As I run about the day, providing services to customers, I have a bunch of time, between service calls, to think about it. I make note of photographic ideas which "pop" into my brain, in a little note pad that is kept close at hand in the service truck. This fall/winter, in a couple of months, I will take the time to try and make these long forgotten, but noted down ideas, into reality.
    The point of the above is that one needs to take time to create ideas and then additional time needs to be expended to flesh the ideas out and get the idea to paper. Whether or not the ideas work, that's a time will tell clause but either which way, the time needs to be expended to get the idea to paper or the ideas, good or bad, will never see the light of day.
    Hope the above is found both insightful and helpful.
     
  11. From "The Tao of Photography"

    All paths lead to enlightenment. Some paths get there sooner than others but it has nothing to do with the path. The path you are on is the right one. The path you change to is the right one.

    Mastery and discipline as a path to artistic enlightenment is as valid as any other. Make 5000 photographs of one subject, say a cat. You will find your artistic self. Maybe not. Maybe you'll just be the photographer who made 5000 photographs of a cat.

    What is a great artist? We tend to say that they communicate powerfully and innovate. Is that true? I don't know. Most great artists are obsessed with creating. They can't easily stop themselves. There's even more to this whole thing but it doesn't matter.
     
  12. "There's even more to this whole thing but it doesn't matter"

    The most sensible comment I've ever seen made about any art, any where.
     
  13. Yes, it doesn't matter but that's easier said than done so how does the creator or artist block or limit all these random thoughts and feelings that have nothing to do with the creationprocess and are only causing static to it? How does the artist comes to a state of mind in wich he or she can go with the flow of the creationprocess and thinking that 'it just doesn't matter'. So to come to the point that it just doesn't matters ( positively speaking,and putting that into practice) one has to have cared or mattered in the firstplace.

    This was somewhat the basis of my question/thinking : the fact that it takes a lot of discipline to come to that productive state of creativity/creation and maintaining it as it is just a part of daily routine life, as if it doesn't matter that much anymore to breaking your mind about it. That's hard to do and almost like asking yourself not trying to think about a certain something (say a pink cadillac) a whole day long. So you see even if it doesn't matter it still matters and will always do. The artist's mind of creation is also the same mind that stores everything about anything with mostly of it not really needed and actually interfering with the focus on creation. A filtersystem is indeed needed to come to terms and to the point that it doesn't matter but of course it will always do cause we can't shut or minds off completely.
     
  14. "How does the artist comes to a state of mind in wich he or she can go with the flow of the creation process and thinking that 'it just doesn't matter'."

    We all have random thoughts and feelings and we all have things that matter -- even things that we prefer did not matter. Do you know anyone for whom this isn't true? If you surrender your attention to them they will probably become less interesting and less distracting and won't matter so much. Then new random thoughts and feelings and things that matter will appear.

    One man's static is another man's source of inspiration or something like that.
     
  15. The artist's mind of creation is also the same mind that stores everything about anything with mostly of it not really needed and actually interfering with the focus on creation. A filtersystem is indeed needed to come to terms and to the point that it doesn't matter but of course it will always do cause we can't shut or minds off completely.
    I think this is coming at the issue from the wrong direction. You're proposing that we should shut off extraneous stimuli in order to focus on what's important, but what I've found in my personal experience is that extraneous stimuli get shut out because I'm so focused on what's important. To that end, finding the subjects that compel you is the key to shutting out the static.
     
  16. Mr. Dixon has it.
     
  17. just do your thing and you'll soon enough find where you're heading.. don't mean to sound trite or condescending, but you seem more worried about your destination than your journey. while it's valid to reflect, be concerned and raise questions, make sure you focus and enjoy the journey. take it all in, then you'll know what to really consume and feed upon and what to drop on the floor. if you neglect and ignore, there's little to begin with. with a reasonable focus and balance, keep at it and you'll discover many things, least of which would be your self.. i'm sure you know all this, to have asked these "questions" to begin with..
     
  18. In my not so humble opinion it is a gross mistake to view photograpny from the standpoint of a contemplative art when it is just a technical process, a tool, which can be employed by artists in their efforts. Other disciplines also use photography in non artistic contexts and are successful or not depending upon their skill in its application. To impute aesthetic virtues to the process rather than to the result is nothing more than pretentious sophistry and does nothing to enhance the holistic value of the work.
     

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