|(With apologies to de la Tour)|
Sometimes I feel like a kind of ghost from the past, sitting invisible in my private world, watching the goings-on among the living. Twitter, Instagram, Vining, Vimeo, etc. Do I really need these things? Apparently, as an artist hoping to build an online presence, I do.
I already stumbled into the technology gap when I went shopping for a clock radio that also played CDs. Nothing out there but clock radios with iPod docking stations! No, I don’t own an iPod. Yet. I do have a shuffle that was given to my late Mother for Christmas years ago, but she couldn’t get the hang of using it. OMG--is that my future? Not yet! But I do perceive that my technology exasperation point is set rather low.
However, art does tend to be a solitary endeavor. More than once I’ve heard, if you want to make art, don’t “have a life.” Stay home and make art! Of course, that’s not entirely a viable route. I think you need to live, to make art. You need to interact, be stimulated, form opinions, as well as guard your time to actually do the work. Full time employment (for those of us who lacked the luck, grace, drive, whatever, to make it in the art world decades ago) only complicates the problem.
So, is social media the answer? Bigger slices of (ever more rapid) life in ever-tinier packages? I’ll admit the instagram thing intrigues me. Walking from where I park to where I work, I constantly see little photo-ops. The No Parking sign bedecked with morning glories blooming in the early sun. The sidewalk weeds that, taken in macro, would look like a forest on another planet. The Bicycle-Bumper Guy almost stopping traffic on the boulevard (you have to be a Pittsburgher to know who that is!)
Unfortunately, I am not yet smart phone enabled (insert frowny face here.) I do have a cell phone, which came in the mail when my daughter put me on her family plan. [Aside: my first introduction to mobile phones came in the 1990’s, in Germany, when they were known (in both deutsch and english) as “handys”; they were about 6” x 3” x 2 “, weighed about 10x what they do now] I have learned to use the little contemporary phone (already obsolete) that she sent me, albeit reluctantly. Now, I can’t leave the house without it. There is definitely a smart phone (or, as a very clever guy calls them, HTDs—Human Tracking Devices) in my future.
For now, I guess I should start twittering. I accidentally signed up for an account when I thought I was signing on to follow a blog I like. But, what would I twitter about? My FB page already contains more postings about various ecological, animal welfare and human rights issues urging people to sign petitions (on which almost no one ever comments—that should tell me something), than it does posts about my doings. So, step #1: educate myself about how to twitter without being a twit.
And, get a laptop. OMG I meant an iPad! No, wait, a SMART PHONE!! I’m still vague enough about them to be utterly impressed when my daughter goes online—on her phone!—to look up something on the internet. I see photos taken with phones that I can’t believe weren’t taken with a “real” camera. OK, when I said that, did you think digital or SLR? Do you recognize the name Kodak? How about Brownie?
I do have a Pinterest account, but I hardly ever go on it. Seems like so much on-line scrap-booking. Step #2: educate myself about how to use Pinterest to promote my art. (Guidance welcome)
Vining sounds really interesting, because of the creative aspect of making 6 seconds really count! I think I could do a little video with my ancient Motorola…
So, all in all, it seems you can’t do much these days without the appropriate technology. No, I don’t really believe that, ‘though many do, because they are newbies and have no frame of reference for older technology; and I can imagine how much time all these toys would consume. Just trying to keep the dust off my blog is challenging! Be that as it may, I am intrigued by all these possibilities/opportunities, and how they might help move my art forward into this brave new world. Learning how to use these tools/toys will also be a challenge.
“Change is inevitable, personal growth is a choice.” – Bob Proctor