Show Your Work

I’m not sure if it’s the combination of cold and snow for far too long or the realization that I left a warm and sunny place behind and I won’t be experiencing it again any time soon. Whatever the case, today I just surrendered to the cold and the crankiness it evoked, stayed inside, and read a book.

Because Show Your Work by Austin Kleon is an essential read for any kind of artist and even has pictures, I could devour it in a couple of hours and reflect on it for the rest of the day.  A few years ago I read another book by Kleon, Steal Like an Artist.  If anything could catapult me out of my funk, it would be this book that waited patiently for me at the bottom of the pile of mail that had accumulated in my absence.

With the transparency and immediacy of social media, the way we create is changing.  It’s no longer necessary to create in solitude, hoping the world will like what we produce when we’re brave enough to share it.

Now we can post, pin, or tweet something and get immediate feedback that shapes not only the product but also the process, making our work more of a collaboration than a solo effort birthed by sporadic bouts of brilliance.

Often times we’re too close to our work to understand its real value. That’s why putting our work out there is more important than perfecting it. Our tribe will see to it that we improve.

A few weeks ago I signed up for B-School with Marie Forleo, an online genius who is willing to share everything she knows about becoming successful online and off. Once a year she makes her online business school available to subscribers. After marveling at her content and creative output over the past year, I decided it was time to invest in her program.

I don’t expect to experience the kind of success she enjoys, but I do believe it’s possible to take the lessons she has to offer and build a better version of my own brand.  I’ll be blogging about these ideas and sharing the lessons learned as well as soliciting your suggestions in the next couple of months. 

So strap in and let’s see what the next few months bring.   As long as it’s not more snow or cold, I’m guessing you’re game?

Six word summary for today:  Dare to share. Show your work.

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