Once upon a time, I went to graduate school. An art school. A school revered around the world. And I worked very, very hard, and took all the advice and wisdom given to me by my favorite and most admired professors very, very seriously. Sometimes to a fault, but there is more on that later. I went to an art school that was, for lack of a more eloquent term, very “arty.” Commercial ventures were not outright sneered upon, but everything I studied was postmodern poststructuralist digital interactive using this new medium to create art that lives only in galleries or the occasional public space, drinking in theory, discussing the ideas and conflicts in the art world with regards to digital, as it related to the questioning of the validity of photography and film when those emerged, as they could be mechanically reproduced, and how did that affect the intrinsic value of the artwork and… well… you get the idea. It was graduate school. A wonderful bubble where these things were all you considered.
But here’s the thing. I never felt like I was ‘arty’ enough. I like creating characters. Concrete ones. Silly ones. Serious ones, but still… I am not exactly the Ellsworth Kelly of digital art. And so somehow I always, despite the encouragement of my professors, felt like I really did not belong. I was never the one who was about to create a large interactive digital space. But I kept thinking I had to be that person to justify my spot in that program. I had to be that Artist with the capital A. I had to be someone that I am not, at least in the way I thought they thought of me. One of my most influential professors told me I would become a famous artist in my own right, and that I should never work for a major studio because I would then be owned by them. I took that advice very much to heart, even though I still tried applying to Pixar and whatnot. Then I moved to Chicago.
OK, it’s not always better, some sometimes it is. Like this. Taking a new website out for a walk. It’s not perfect, it’s stumbling around, it’s missing a few parts, but it will get there.
Sometimes as a creative professional, you can get caught up in how you are “supposed” to do self-promotion. I think sometimes you can get lost in that. Your personality, the projects that really ring your bell, get buried, and that sparkle, that thing that makes you you, that thing that makes people want to hire you, seems a little dull. That sort of defeats the purpose, right? You are dulling your own personality in the interest of doing what you think others might like, and if this isn’t where your heart lies… well… you will just be perpetually frustrated. So this new relaunch is about finding balance. Finding balance in that which I do professionally and that which I do creatively, late in the night, a glass of wine in one hand, a stylus/camera/pencil in the other, hoping to better all of it. It can totally be done.
So welcome to my relaunch of palecow.net, and stick with me while it grows!