What is theatre without an audience? A portrait without a subject? A book without a reader? Music without a listener?
Creative people support creative people.
This is crucial to the growth of a creative person especially in their more risky endeavors. As a writer, I did not show my work to a single soul until about a year ago, and I didn’t know that I could or should. I wrote less because I assumed it had very little value to the world. But, as soon as I started showing people, I started to see that it brought people joy, compassion, heartbreak, etc. I was happy because it pulled peoples strings. It made them feel something. And they were grateful to me for that. Art is extremely fragile and fickle, and artists rely heavily on validation for inspiration to continue. That is why we, passionate and creative people, must make noble efforts to support the fearless endeavors of our wild and outlandish homies.
My freelance writing work has put me back in touch with an old friend of mine who has pursued photography for as long as I can remember. She just graduated from film school and is working on a short film as well as doing freelance photography and film in LA. Our lives have been parallel for a very long time, and our creative passions brought a timely intersection last weekend when we met up for a photoshoot in Denver. We both look through a very feminist lens when we see a woman, especially each other. We used this shoot to celebrate ourselves, each other, and the fierce feminine fire that burns in all of us. We created portraits of sass, gentle beauty, and candid laughter. We discussed the importance of the written word while I posed for her photo. We poured praise about each other’s powerful spirit in art and in life. And we both felt an invigorated sense of inspiration. A reminder of why we love our art so much.
[WE ARE ALL A PART OF THE SAME HUSTLE]
My friend, Becca, is a dance major. She is graceful and elegant in every way you expect a dancer to be, but she is weird, full of sass, and brings nothing but warmth and sunshine into a room. The summer is almost over and I haven’t seen her summer performance yet. Work caught up to me. After my photo shoot last weekend I discovered the importance of supporting my friend’s art. I finally realized that work isn’t any excuse to miss out on providing her with an audience that loves and cares about her work as much as she does. Even more importantly, I realized that we are all a part of the same hustle. And who are we creative hustlers without each other?
So, model for your friend’s photo. Go to your friend’s show. Read their new story. Listen to their new mixtape. The fact is, we all need each other. For support, critique, and inspiration.