Kevin Kelly’s Cool Tools: Art and Fear

Kevin Kelly, in his list “Cool Tools”, has excerpts of what looks like a good book for anyone who wants to know not just about making art but being creative generally. Here’s a link to the site, and here is a fascinating story from the Cool Tool: Art & Fear

‘The ceramics teacher announced on opening day that he was dividing the class into two groups. All those on the left side of the studio, he said, would be graded solely on the quantity of work they produced, all those on the right solely on its quality. His procedure was simple: on the final day of class he would bring in his bathroom scales and weigh the work of the “quantity” group: fifty pound of pots rated an “A”, forty pounds a “B”, and so on. Those being graded on “quality”, however, needed to produce only one pot -albeit a perfect one – to get an “A”. Well, came grading time and a curious fact emerged: the works of highest quality were all produced by the group being graded for quantity. It seems that while the “quantity” group was busily churning out piles of work – and learning from their mistakes – the “quality” group had sat theorizing about perfection, and in the end had little more to show for their efforts than grandiose theories and a pile of dead clay.’

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One response to “Kevin Kelly’s Cool Tools: Art and Fear

  1. Interestingly, I came across this reference to the book here: http://www.codinghorror.com/blog/archives/001160.html

    It is a blog about programming, but many of the ideas in Art & Fear well apply to software development (itself a creative act).

    Indeed, anyone creating anything: bread, bookshelves, flower arrangements, Powerpoint presentations…you name it…could learn from this book.

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