Creativity porn

So…this blog is working!

Now that Zeynep has posted her update, I feel obligated to post mine.

First off, I’ll admit I did nothing over the weekend.  I have a million excuses, mostly doing with my husband being out-of-commission resulting in me being the sole baby-watcher, but in reality I could have gotten work done at night but I didn’t.

Watching a baby is exhausting so at night I ‘treated’ myself to some TV.  But let’s be real.  There was a time when making creative work was a ‘treat.’  And there was a time, not so very long ago, when reading was a treat.  Both of those activities are loads better than TV.  So I need to replace TV with a different treat.  To that end, I’m going to put a mini-challenge to myself for today to find a new book.

OK!  Now moving on to last week’s results.  I’ve been working on Ikea hacks.  When I started out, I had this grand plan that I’d hack all of this Ikea furniture, post a bunch of pretty pictures, then find people who would pay me to hack their furniture for them.  I mean, people already pay for Ikea furniture assembly, so they’d totally shell out another $100 to beautify their billy bookcase, right?

Besides, I’ve painted furniture before so it couldn’t be that hard to do this more professionally.

Nope!

Painting Ikea furniture is a fucking pain in the ass.

Who is this person who stripped down and redid her cabinet after round 1 didn’t go as planned???  Or this person who painted and wallpapered a Pax dresser to make a custom vanity??  Or any of these people who probably spent more money revamping their Rast than buying it?

So there I was on Wednesday (or was it Thursday?) spray painting a set of generic white brackets brass thinking to myself, what the fuck am I doing?  I don’t even like painting furniture.  I like hacking things, for sure, but I have never enjoying the prime, sand, prime process.  Not for furniture, not for canvases.  In fact, that was my least favorite part of painting.  So…once again that brings me to…what the fuck am I doing?

And as I painted I began to wonder, how many people actually try these hacks?  Maybe I’m just over-confident, but I look at these home improvement blogs or instructables and read over the instructions and think, no problem.  I can totally do that.  Then when it comes down to it, it’s a complete mess.

What I realized as I was painting (epiphany brought on by paint fumes?) is that nobody does this stuff.  People love reading about these cools hacks and sitting there thinking (as I naively did), I could totally do that.  And perhaps with enough time, space, and patience they could.  But in reality most people won’t bother.

Ikea hackers and home improvement bloggers are selling creativity porn.

Of course, there are people who do want to be creative.  To make things.  To hack furniture.  But most people just want to fantasize.

And me?  Maybe I’m in the fantasize bucket too, when it comes to furniture.  Part of what I’m trying to do with this blog is find what it is that helps me get to flow.  I’ve been there while painting/drawing, while working on a design problem, a puzzle, or coding.  But not so much while furniture hacking.

 

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1 thought on “Creativity porn”

  1. I have to admit I laughed while reading your blog post Ann – I loved how honest and down-to-earth it was!!! Perhaps our next blog idea can be the anti-creativity porn!? Because I totally agree with your statement about how people just like looking and not actually engaging in those activities and I must admit I am the same! When I was furnishing my apartment I had all these grand ideas about hacking together my (non-used) writing desk… in the end I just went to IKEA, got a desk, built it and now it functions as a lovely holder for dirty laundry and extra pillows with no writing in sight.

    I also think you touched on a very interesting point with what we “think” will make us happy vs. what actually makes us happy and get into flow. I have recently read a book called Happiness by Design by Paul Dolan, a professor of mine in grad school and a lot of his happiness research focuses on this discrepancy between how we think about happiness vs. how we actually experience happiness. Here’s a cool interview with him: http://www.wired.co.uk/article/paul-dolan-happiness-wired-2015

    It’s great to hear that our blog is working! Look forward to hearing what book you choose 🙂

    Like

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