Likely you have hear the joke where a visitor to New York City ask a man on the street, "How do you get to Carnegie Hall?" The sharp New Yorker responds, "Practice, practice, practice!"
I believe that is true for anything you do when you want to get better. This, of course, includes the making of art.
This morning I was reading a review on Amazon of Moonwalking With Einstein by Joshua Foer. The book is a study about improving memory and the review included a Q&A and I found the following question very interesting.
Question (Interviewer not identified): Can you explain the "OK Plateau?"
Answer (Foer): The OK Plateau is that place we all get to where we just stop getting better at something. Take typing, for example. You might type and type and type all day long, but once you reach a certain level, you just never get appreciably faster at it. That's because it's become automatic. You've moved it to the back of your mind's filing cabinet. If you want to become a faster typer, it's possible, of course. But you've got to push yourself past where you're comfortable. You have to watch yourself fail and learn from your mistakes. That's the way to get better at anything. And it's how I improved my memory.
I agree. If your studio experience has become rote, automatic, sure, perhaps you need to shake things up. As Joshua Foer said, "You've got to push yourself past where you're comfortable. You have to watch yourself fail and learn from your mistakes. That's the way to get better at anything." And that includes making.
Here is a link to a video of Foer talking about the OK Plateau.
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