Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Humans of New York - "Two Selves"

Photographer Brandon Stanton runs a website called "Humans of New York," which may be my favorite place on the internet.

I save a lot of his photos to my personal reference files. They're great for character design inspiration.

His photos are wonderful, but the icing on the cake, for me, is in the captions. He asks each subject a few basic but profound questions, getting responses that run the gamut from hilarious to heartbreaking.

This one was posted today and sort of piggybacks off of an older post of mine concerning my cynicism of the phrase "be true to yourself."

"I wish I'd partied a little less. People always say 'be true to yourself.' But that's misleading, because there are two selves. There's your short term self, and there's your long term self. And if you're only true to your short term self, your long term self slowly decays."

Very reminiscent to me of this quote, from "How To Do What You Love" by Paul Graham:

"The rule about doing what you love assumes a certain length of time. It doesn't mean, do what will make you happiest this second, but what will make you happiest over some longer period, like a week or a month. Unproductive pleasures pall eventually. After a while you get tired of lying on the beach. If you want to stay happy, you have to do something."

One commenter of the HONY post on Facebook added this thought:

I know these posts tend to get vague and philosophical and aren't directly related to making art most of the time. For me, this blog is a way to share not only my work, artists I love, and helpful tutorials etc., but also the things that keep me going. So much of making art is all about your attitude and your mindset. Quotes like the one above keep me powering through the slumps. Hopefully they help you too.

© Gina Florio 2014

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