Imagine attending an elaborate party. The room’s filled with foreign dignitaries and celebrities. Now imagine a Navy Seal shows up – especially one that’s just come back from a battle. Mr. Navy Seal walks into the shindig and immediately sizes it up. He’s scanning the room to identify potential weapons and escape routes. He’s already decided the order in which he’d kill people if something went down. Mr. Navy Seal sees things I will never see – because he’s trained himself to think that way. I haven’t.
Great artists train themselves to think differently too. And no, I’m not trying to promote Apple. (Well, maybe a little.)
But when a great graphic designer reads a magazine, he notices layout and graphic techniques that elude me. When a finely skilled musician attends a concert, he hears tones and rhythms I miss.
This sort of thing comes naturally to a skilled artist because they’re obsessed with their craft. It’s hard not to notice those things.
But for me to notice them, it requires a bit of training and focus. It requires me to avoid what I’d normally see – the face value – and seek deeper to see what they do. Instead of just consuming a piece of art, I have to actively consume and explore it. This helps me see what they see.
As an artist, you need to constantly train yourself to actively consume and explore art. Art can’t just be a form of entertainment – it must be a journey of discovery. You must train your brain to see the world differently. You must train your brain to be a Navy Seal in the art world.
So suit up, soldier. Grab your weapon and storm the world with your art. Let’s go, go, go.