Saturday, October 15, 2011

Back Flips are really just Metaphors for Life.

Dear Artists,

As you've probably discovered, in order to do the things you love as an artist there must be sacrifices. Part-time jobs as a director means a full time job as a waiter, or vice-versa. Selling paintings and making money may be an ultimate dream, but in the mean time portraits or made to order prints are the reality. Theater Career? Oh, you mean all those things you go to when we're all out doing fun things that you NEVER go to? 
Yes, the skepticism apparent in the voices of those who don't understand can be patronizing. So it is also a sacrifice to simply be an artist, because of the lack of stability that parents and friends love to shove in your face. However, if you are a truly in love with what you're doing those things don't matter. You're willing to sacrifice for the thing you love. 

As the show nears, we are really amping up production in the drama room. There's a fight scene where the entire cast is on stage, but to start it off is a back flip. To be more specific, an assisted backfield off a five foot set piece into the hands of cast mates. Guess who's doing that back flip? Oh yes, we all make sacrifices for our art, even if we've been dropped on a concrete floor more than once this production. 
More than anything though, the back flip sequence in the show is cooperative, a real trust exercise. The only things stopping me from hitting the concrete, are the outstretched hands of my cast mates. I remember the first time we ever tried the flip. I was shaking so much I wasn't even sure if I could do it. But I shut my eyes and leaped anyway.
And maybe that's all you need to do: to trust that your love of art will be strong enough to guide you through the unknown. 
After all, the best thing I've ever learned about art is that you can do anything. Just fake it 'till you make it.

Take the leap, not the plunge,

Arctic Hipster

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