Normal is overrated
June 6, 2022

The Price We Pay for the Art We Make

The Price We Pay for the Art We Make

As artists, our work comes with a price...and this price includes:

Facing Our Fears
Undoing the Narrative of Perfection
Taking Action over Analytical Consumption

As artists, our work comes with a price...and this price includes:

  1. Facing Our Fears
  2. Undoing the Narrative of Perfection
  3. Taking Action over Analytical Consumption

Resources Mentioned in This Episode:


Hey You, it’s Helen and this is the Think Weird Podcast – a mindset podcast for first-generation creative entrepreneurs. The inspiration from this episode comes from one of my creative heroes, James Victore, who said that our art comes with a price. Thank you, James.


As you can tell from the title, we are going deeper than we did last year in discussing the price we pay for the art we make.


My personal background is in radio, audio production, and mindset coaching…but I’ve generalized these points so we can discuss this in detail to help further your quest to achieve your dreams without losing your soul along the way.


Salvador Dali


So, I want to start off today with a quote from world-renowned Spanish artist Salvador Dali. If you’ve never heard of him, look up a picture of him and you will most likely recognize him from his mustache


He says,

"Have no fear of perfection - you'll never reach it."

- Salvador Dali.

There’s a price, then, to the art, we make…in that it’s never going to be the picture or sound in our head. It will always be a beautiful alteration. In improv, they say that there are no such things as mistakes. They are not mistakes, they are gifts.

But I want you to catch the distinction here – there are no mistakes, but there are perceptions that things can be mistakes. Dali says that embedded in our brains is the FEAR of perfection and this is what stops us.

No longer can we become like others, who live WITH the perception…but we actively fight against the perception of perfection.

The price is LEARNING to become US – to work despite the fear. We don’t work because we aren’t scared, we work IN SPITE the fear.

Information Age


Sometimes the fearful whisper of perfection comes to us when we become over-consumers of information. We can over-consume because we fear possible failure. We strive for MORE information because we see lack…and by consuming and not producing, we trade production of meaningful art with scary knowledge consumption.


I have this theory, that we are all born with inconceivable possibility and greatness, but the heavyweights of fear can overwhelm us, consume us, and beat us up until we clam up into a shell of doubt. This perpetuating doubt acts as all-consuming cancer that eats away at our bones until we become skeletons of who we once were artists with the dedication to do whatever it takes.


I have two design heroes – Chris Do and James Victore. Both are world-renowned and in getting taught by both, I’ve come to see that the hidden greatness in both is they were willing to do WHATEVER it took to accomplish the mission. This sort of reminds me of the military, they are there to accomplish the mission…not just to put their feet in the water but to submerge their entire being into the water so they can swim against the current and ultimately fight against the roaring sea of doubt they both experienced.


Two – they were also willing to be taught…and that’s what you’re doing now. As a creator, we create because by not creating, we fall prey to a deeper sadness than we can even describe. To be a creator is to be compelled at random hours of the day with notebooks full of ideas.


I’ve mentioned to some of you before that I am taking classes with the Futur Pro Group – I joined their community two weeks ago and there was a spectacular class I watched called “Business Hot Seat” with Matt Essam—an excellent business consultant in England. In his class, he said, “the vehicle by which we accomplish our mission is far less important than getting the mission accomplished”. By vehicle, he was referring to music, digital products, YouTube…it matters little, as much as the “DO” part. Never forget the values that drive you, our art evolves and iterates the more we progress in our craft


When You Feel Different


Lastly, I don’t want to forget this essential piece of this episode. Sometimes, the price is putting our heads down and doing the work. TAKING ACTION…when our friends are doing fun things, like going out to eat in new restaurants, bowling, golfing, riding fancy cars, taking fancy trips…these things are great and I am not against them…but they can also act as a beautiful distraction when we have a mission in life to accomplish. The great travel experiences will come, but for now, we may feel different from our same-age comrades and co-workers who may not align with our life mission.


One of my other teachers in life, Brandon Shindo, taught me that our difference doesn’t have to be our kryptonite. Rather, it can be as fuel. Like Popeye the sailor man and spinach. Let the difference be like spinach, healthy fuel for long-term growth.


In the 9th grade, my biology teacher, Ms. Savage said goodbye to us on the last day of school by holding up a filter & said that life can be lived in two ways, we can expose ourselves to the “best for now” experiences (partying, drugs, popularity) and risk having fewer options in the future, or we can choose to do the hard works so we have a plethora of options when we grow older.


I hope you choose the second option.