I thought I was done sharing Steal like an Artist quotations, but Austin Kleon has posted more plus this video shot while on his book tour. It runs about 40 minutes but I think it is 40 minutes well spent. He begins by talking about his Newspaper Blackout poetry which inspired me to to try this technique with Obituaries. Bottom line, nothing much new under the sun. Or:
Mostly when people see things as original it means they don’t know where they came from. It’s kind of that simple but, I don’t mean that as “Whoa snap, I can’t believe you said that, it’s so mean.” I mean that I don’t know where everything came from either, who does? Things come from places largely and then they get recombined or spun or give a different flavor or different emphasis. I can think of a 100 precursors to almost anything I’ve done and honestly, sometimes you don’t stand on the shoulders of giants. Sometimes you stand on shoulders of dwarfs. There are things that I thought. “Oh, that’s minimally interesting, but I think there is something about it I can improve and turn into my own.” Other times you are conscious of a series of precursors that no one else would ever spot or think about unless you pointed it out — and I’m that dope who is always pointing it out. For originality is really truly an overrated concept except as a nice form of praise. It’s like you want to say “wow.” It’s a way of saying wow.