I think this is probably relevant for anything creative.
APE: I understand but I hear from photographers who look at those who have reps and are getting a lot of work and making a lot of money and they say I can shoot like that what’s the big deal?
That’s just copying other people. Whenever I hear that I think, they just don’t get it. It’s not about “I can do that,” what other people are doing. It’s about getting out there for yourself and shooting what you love because you love doing it. Have a strong vision and have something to say that people want to hear. Copying is just chasing trends and if you’re trying to do what everyone else is already doing you’ve missed it, because it’s already happened.
A: Me and my wife on Rte. 66 with a pot of coffee, a cheap guitar, pawnshop tape recorder in a Motel 6, and a car that runs good parked right by the door.
Q: What’s wrong with the world?
A: We are buried beneath the weight of information, which is being confused with knowledge; quantity is being confused with abundance and wealth with happiness. Leona Helmsley’s dog made 12 million last year… and Dean McLaine, a farmer in Ohio made $30,000. It’s just a gigantic version of the madness that grows in every one of our brains. We are monkeys with money and guns.
Q: Can you tell me an odd thing that happened in an odd place? Any thoughts?
A: A Japanese freighter had been torpedoed during WWII and it’s at the bottom of Tokyo Harbor with a large hole in her hull. A team of engineers was called together to solve the problem of raising the wounded vessel to the surface. One of the engineers tackling this puzzle said he remembered seeing a Donald Duck cartoon when he was a boy where there was a boat at the bottom of the ocean with a hole in its hull, and they injected it with ping-pong balls and it floated up. The skeptical group laughed but one of the experts was willing to give it a try. Of course, where in the world would you find twenty million ping-pong balls but in Tokyo? It turned out to be the perfect solution. The balls were injected into the hull and it floated to the surface, the engineer was elated. Moral solutions to problems are always found at an entirely different level; also, believe in yourself in the face of impossible odds.
Q: Do you have words to live by?
A: Jim Jarmusch once told me “Fast, Cheap, and Good… pick two. If it’s fast and cheap it wont be good. If it’s cheap and good it won’t be fast. If it’s fast and good it wont be cheap.” Fast, cheap and good… pick (2) words to live by.
Q: Tom, you love words and their origins. For $2,000…what is the origin of the word bedlam?
A: It’s a contraction of the word Bethlehem. It comes from the hospital of Saint Mary of Bethlehem outside London. The hospital began admitting mental patients in the late fourteenth century. In the sixteenth century it became a lunatic asylum. The word bedlam came to be used for any madhouse- and by extension, for any scene of noisy confusion.
“Liam Patrick Holden was born on Saturday, November 7 in the year of our Lord 2009. The events surrounding his emergence mark the most wonderful and most horrible moments of my 28 years. Kate went into labor at 3am Saturday morning.”—Dustin on the birth of his son. Congratulations dear friend. What an epic email. Look at that desription.