Saturday, March 11, 2017

10 Reasons The Internet is Super for Creativity

Okay I admit that I've looked at Facebook today, checked my
blog, and read some email.  But I can't get behind the idea
that the Internet is harming creativity.  Really?  Let's check
this out.

1. Before the Internet, artists were restricted in large part
to being alone, and working alone.  If you were
painting in that ancient time, do you remember how
isolated you felt? 

2. The Internet through all the social media sites, through
blogs like mine,  connects artists to artists all over the 
world.  When you are working on a piece and post it,
people comment on how well you're doing.  
You never had support like that in the far back past.

3. Seeing work from all over the world, adds to, it does not
detract from our creativity.  New ideas and new ways
of working pop up every day on favourite artists' sites,
and many of them post how-to videos, photos of how
their studios are organized.  I have learned so much!
I admit that if you have no sense of time you could
perhaps lose days just looking at what people do.
But even that would be a productive use of an artist's

4. Being public as an artist puts pressure on us to
produce.  Less creative than before the Internet?
I hardly think so.  Nothing is more of a push to
get going with new work, finish old work, do the
work period, than knowing people are waiting to
see what you are doing.  We all can have an
audience now if we want it.  And I don't get the
idea of creating art in a vacuum and not sharing it
with the world.  Sharing it to me seems to be one
of the reasons for creating work.

5. Speaking of being noticed -- how would I have
been found by Howard Wolinsky, the Chicago
Journalist (and fantastic photographer)
if I didn't have a web presence (a blog)?  And
how would his YouTube interviews with me 
get picked up by the Oprah Winfrey show if
I didn't have a blog?  Marvellous and miraculous
opportunities open up for artists because of the 
Internet.  Oh and the reason I was noticed --
I was working on a then new form of Internet
communication -- Skype. 

6. And perhaps even more exciting are the
invitations to take part in International shows that
might never have come my way, if my work 
wasn't out there, visible, online.  How 
wonderful to get the chance to show in New York 
City, the Louvre, in Paris, or The Florence Biennale, 
in Italy and meet artists whose work you admire face 
to face. How lovely to visit cities you have always
wanted to see, and to make new friends there. 

7.  Let's not forget one of the reasons for producing
art if you are a professional artist -- sales.  We work
in one of the few professions in the world which
is supposed to be above discussions of money.
It's true.  I can't tell you how many artists have told
me that either they don't sell their work, or they
don't care about sales.  Either those artists are
independently wealthy (and I have met many
such artists) or they've bought (pardon my wording)
the myth that artists should be above concerns
about cash.  Not true.  The Internet can bring
artists sales from anywhere and anyone.  And it does.

8. Having an Internet presence gives artists a quick
and easy record of what they've done, and if they
write a blog, like I do, they've also got fast access
to what they were thinking creating a certain piece
of work, what their worries were, what methods
they used, and valuable insight into what their 
ideas and goals were in the past,  and how they've
changed and grown.

9.  Proof of creativity is an incredible advantage of 
the Internet.  Since I started this little blog in 2008
I've written 1840 blogs.  Say I get down (and everybody
including artists has their down days) -- that number
alone should help me see that I haven't been 
completely idle, I've been creative.  And that's just the blog,
and what about other social media.  Plus I am
getting close to 300,000 hits (or people looking at
and reading my blog.)  That is quite a lot more
attention than I would have had working alone in
my little studio, and it is encouraging.  Oddly enough
we artists are doing a peculiar thing -- making something
out of nothing.  Many of us are as insecure as all get
out about it.  The proof that people notice is a great
boon to our spirits, our productivity, and I believe
our mental health.,

10.  It just gets better.  There is so much I haven't
mentioned -- all the supportive people we can meet
who conduct seminars we can access online, both paid and
unpaid to learn about the technical, financial, 
theoretical -- every aspect of art and creativity.  TED
Talks, Alyson Stanfield, please add to this list in the
comments, I have to go and paint soon.  Plus there is
a code of honour -- certainly in the art blog world.
We only comment on work we like.  So all of our
comments are positive.  And in my experience as a 
teacher -- believe me that has a magical effect.
It is not bad for creativity for people to earn 
praise -- quite the opposite.  Think about it.
Which friend makes you want to continue with
(anything), the one who criticizes every single 
thing you do, or the one who notices what you're
doing well.  I pick the latter, and I know you would

That's it for today folks.  Hurray for the Internet
and the boost to creativity everywhere.

(This blog post is a work in process.  Even that
is possible.  Set your clocks back and I'll add to
this tomorrow).

Have an enjoying the Internet day.


laura said...

All great reasons--the first four have been especially helpful to me. I wonder if I would have kept painting without all the support I've gotten from other painters, and I'm quite sure I would not have had so many ideas and learned so much without the inspiration of other artists' work, like yours!

Barbara Muir said...

Hi Laura,

Your wonderful work inspires me every time. I guess a point I didn't make, but there are so
many things I could say, is how joyful I feel when I read or see your blog, or read your comments,
or feel a connection in this exciting community. All of that just sends me right over the top in


Portrait Artist

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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I paint and draw on commission and for shows. To commission a portrait, or purchase one of my paintings please contact me at:
A major highlight in my career? Drawing Oprah Winfrey live via Skype for her show "Where in the Skype are you? Galleries: Studio Vogue Gallery, Toronto, Canada. The Amsterdam Whitney Gallery, New York City. Gallery at the Porch Door, Kingston, Canada. Your positive comments on this blog mean the world to me. I'd love to hear from you!