Number One Seldom The Best

Number one is seldom the best in art. Creative projects need to have the broadest appeal possible to reach a wide audience. The more artistic, the more subtle, the more unique a project the less relatable it becomes and the harder it becomes to connect with an audience. In art, often times, when a work of genius comes to life it takes time to be recognized.

In visual media it’s usually a generation or two beyond where the world catches up to it. The impressionist didn’t start to sell paintings until after the movement had all but vanished. In music, we live in a world flooded with Ariana Grande, Cardi B, Hanson’s and countless other randomly auto tuned computerized music, but who’s heard of Devin Townsend? Who’s made more money in making movies, Jim Jarmusch or Michael Bay?

It’s not to say there’s not value in commercially viable art, there is. But the boundaries are pushed at the edge of a frontier not at its center. We grow artistically when we reach the limits of our craft and venture across that line where our talents may not be enough to successfully match our vision. It’s here where the best happens, not in the familiar. We create comfortable art like comfort food, people gravitate towards it because they know it. It makes them feel comfortable.

We, as creative type people, must find the center of our art, decide to create there or move forward to expand our craft and our audiences’ comfort zones. It’s a tall task to decide. To be more popular or better at your craft. Not to sure where to go from here, but I do know that it’s rare when number one is the best in art, but number two?

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