Great comic on creative work in the Internet age

The Oatmeal's "Some thoughts and musings about making things for the web" really captures a lot of the joys and sorrows of working in a creative field in the age of the Internet, especially the toxicity of spending too much time reading nasty comments, and the difficulty of maintaining self discipline. My one quibble -- and it's a major one -- is the business about "inspiration."

For me the major turning point in my working life was when I figured out that the work I produced when I felt inspired wasn't any different from the work I produced when I felt uninspired -- at least a few months later. I think that "inspiration" has to do with your own confidence in your ideas, your blood sugar, the external pressures in your life, and a million other factors only tangentially related to the actual quality of the work. If creative work makes you sane and happy (and if it supports you financially), it's terrible to harness it to something you can't control, like "inspiration" -- it sucks to only be happy when something you can't control occurs.

Some thoughts and musings about making things for the web (via Neatorama)


    1. I’m going to bring a completely frivolous lawsuit against you for saying that. And if you use the lawsuit to raise money to pay for cancer research or resurrecting pterodactyls I’ll sue you for that too.

      1. My grandmother made $1,942,660.03 in three months while working at home, you can too!

  1. My personal experience is that I can avoid negative comments simply by working in obscurity.  By avoiding the production of anything of popular interest, I have been quite successful at keeping the comments that I get on YouTube up on a positive level.  But, yes, I do feel sorry for those people who can’t help but make things that many people like.  On the bright side, popularity is fleeting.

  2. Sorry to post something serious here, but:  this is not news, nor is it special to the internet.  Anyone vaguely public used to risk scathing reviews in magazines and newspapers (see “Guy Fieri in NYC” for a recent example).  It happened, and happens, to actors, politicians, athletes, performers, etc.  About the only  new-ish thing is that, thanks to  software tools that let any 75-IQ or higher set up a blog or twitter account, all sorts of idiots are going public without a clue as to what happens to public figures.

      1. I was just about to say exactly the same thing.  Maybe you should submit a resumé to Happy Mutants.

  3. This cartoon is sexist and all the comments here are sexist!

    EDIT: Also, this place was sooo much better before all these hipsters started showing up… HIPSTERS SUCK!!! ESPECIALLYY SEXAISTS ONES!!!!

  4. Definitely believe that which you stated. Your favorite justification seemed to be on the web the simplest thing to be aware of. You managed to hit the nail upon the top and defined out the whole thing without having side effect, people can take a signal. Will likely be back to get more. Thanks

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  5. Visual artist Chuck Close had a similar perspective on inspiration and creative professionals:

    “Inspiration is for amateurs. The rest of us just show up and get to work.”

  6. I was going to say something almost serious like : “I figured out that the work I produced when I felt inspired wasn’t any different from the work I produced when I felt uninspired — at least a few months later” is a very wise thing and I am glad that I have finally learned the same thing myself. 

    But this comment thread seems to be the wrong place so instead I’ll say :”Fake! It’s shopped!”

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