In our industry, we are blessed with the many tools that have been given to us. Our work is malleable, pliable at the least, shaped and influenced by many of these tools. We use them to cater to our needs, fashion, craft, and even make a living out of. Our tools have become a part of us so much that it seems unsound and perhaps, absurd to even give the thought of abandoning them. Yet, as attached as we are to our tools, we take them for granted.
A long time ago, I met this painter who meticulously washed the brushes he would use, before and after he painted. I was present at the time he was about to begin to paint anew, and I observed him as he cleaned his brush set. The look on his face, his manner and his emotion, were emanating out from him. His emotion was so powerful enough that, as I stood there, his very mien was reflecting on me. It felt for a moment, that I was in his position, cleaning those brushes. It felt for a moment, I was the one who cared for those brushes. If felt, for a moment, I owned those brushes.
I tried to mull over what that meant to me. “Was I envious?” I asked myself at times. “Should I be more like him?” I thought. Though, in a realisation of what may seem obvious, I then saw what I did not see in myself, and perhaps, many of us: We don’t give as much to dote the tools we use. We take them for granted.
Now then, what are we to do? If we’ve so much as then realised we’ve been treating our tools like jerks, who are we to use them?
As much as I, now, am aware of, I’m not saying we should place our tools on a pedestal and worship them, no. It’s that we should acknowledge them, feature them, or even tell people what your work is made with. I’m also sure that the people who spend their time and effort to develop and create these tools will even be pleased. Alternatively, however, we could at least stop the frequent taunting and the guffaws of that “crashy” application we all seem to know and love.
Back to that painter
The art and his works were completely astounding. If I had the money back then to buy his art, I’d would have bought them all, and hung them all over the place. They were, not being completely biased, beautiful. Just like him, many of our works and art are of complete brilliance. The only difference between his paintings and our work, is that there’s this little important detail we so often, I dare say, omit:
Have you ever noticed that in art galleries, each painting tells us of how and what with, an artwork is made? That detail, that single, important detail is what we omit.
I’m not saying we should all add that to every piece of our work. As mentioned before, any form of acknowledgement will do.
We too, like that painter who cared so solemnly about his tools, should appreciate the tools we have been given. But not to forget: just because a tool can wither and fail, doesn’t mean we should start to dither and flail.