Well, the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim beat the Vancouver Canucks tonight to ensure themselves a spot in the playoffs. Which reminds me of my favorite quote from an athlete:
"I never get comfortable. To get comfortable would hurt my development."
-Andy McDonald, forward for the Mighty Ducks, when asked, as a rookie, if he was starting to get comfortable with his new team.
This is so true for everyone in life, especially artists and filmmakers. To get comfortable is to get complacent. To me, the only person who deserves the title "artist" is someone who is working to get better at what they do. I think an 11-year-old who draws every night and tries to draw better deserves the title more than a 45-year-old industry veteran who relies on the same tricks day after day and thinks he doesn't need to improve. I would call a guy that scoops ice cream for a living and tries to do it better every day an artist before I would confer the title on a sellout painter who cranks out the same canvas day after day. To be alive is to grow. To be stagnant is death.
Photo of me (inside the red frame) at a recent game where the Ducks beat the Florida Panthers. Second row! Pretty sweet, huh?
Douglas MacArthur said "There is no security in this life. There is only opportunity." If you are worried about losing your job by doing something that's too daring, then you aren't being creative. Everyone remembers the pioneers who pushed the boundaries. Nobody remembers the ones who played it safe.
When Thomas Edison was trying to invent the light bulb, he tried thousands of different materials as a filament. None of them worked. Someone asked him if he was tired of failing. He said (something akin to) "I haven't failed. I've successfully identified thousands of things that WON"T work!" You can't succeed without failing. If you gave up trying to walk the first time you fell down, you'd still be crawling.
And Rob Minkoff was famous for saying "It's better to beg for forgiveness than ask for permission". Don't wait and ask for permission - do the daring thing right now and see how it flies. Sometimes it works! When it doesn't, wel...then you beg.
(Just don't come looking for me if this gets you fired. You don't HAVE to take my advice! It's only worth as much as you paid for it).
More to come soon on the Line-of-Action!