Technology is a beautiful thing and it’s just gotten bigger and faster and more resourceful as the years have gone by. I can’t name anyone who would want to return to life before the internet, most wouldn’t even survive life with dial up. We’re attached to our devices and we breathe 4G.
Part of technology’s gift to us has been facilitating and encouraging the creativity of the everyman. Thanks to the digital revolution of the last decade, everyone has access to the tools and knowledge they need to create. Visual art, music, published works of literature, full length films; you name it, everyone is making it and more of it. And, people are beginning to wonder if this is the end of creativity as we know it.
Hold up. More creativity is the end of creativity. Enabling creativity will ultimately kill it?
That is precisely the question explored by the world’s most influential creators of the digital era in the documentary PressPausePlay. As the film’s official website puts it “Does democratized culture mean better art, film, music and literature or is true talent instead flooded and drowned in the vast digital ocean of mass culture? Is it cultural democracy or mediocrity?”
Here at SolidLine Media we are professional creatives. We are a full-service video production studio in Chicago and we love our creatives. Obviously, we use technology to ensure each of our video productions is the best it can be, but we also respect and live by pure and professional creativity. We’re happy to provide tips and expert advice about our field, and the programs that we use are readily available for anyone to purchase. However, we’re confident that talent is still the winner.
Technology is incredibly useful and, in some cases, necessary. But without the skills, experience and talent, all you have is a toolbox. A very powerful toolbox, but still a toolbox. The problem, as the documentary sees it, is that because these tools are so powerful and so easy to come by that there are MORE people making art…and that art isn’t always good. Just because more is created doesn’t necessarily mean the ratio of brilliant-to-horrible/mediocre art is in anyway increased. In fact, they argue that a young Hitchcock would get lost in today’s white-noise of art.
It’s an interesting question. We obviously want to encourage creativity, without it no one on our team would’ve found their passions and their careers. At SolidLine, we’d feel pretty lost without creativity.
But what of the digital revolution and the democratization of creativity? What does more ‘art’ and ‘artists’ mean?
Thoughts from the SolidLine Team:
“When it comes down to it, in order to be recognized or appreciated, time and dedication is what separates an artist or filmmaker from the rest, not the tools they are using.”–Michael Kromm, Director of Post Production
“A 12 year old can film, edit and upload an entire movie from his phone. Does the ability to do those things make the art “better?” Nope. All art is subjective. […] But people are worried that “real” art is being drowned out by the flood of silly cat art, which is crazy. If you are good, people will notice, no matter how many versions of nyan cat people watch.”–Mike Petrik, Art Director