A funny thing happened a few weeks ago…

I was chatting with one of my best friends (hellloooo Pierce!), and he mentioned that even though he knows I write all of my emails (because I see him all the time and I talk about it…), they sometimes feel like they’re coming from some magical assistant-type person.

And you know…the thing is that I’ve gotten this kind of feedback before.

I’m not sure how or why it happens. Maybe my writing feels too formal to some people—even if I’m writing pretty much exactly how I speak in real life? Or maybe it has to do with the sheer abundance of work I want to share.

With this in mind, and also in the context of the ever-present emotional confusion I feel upon releasing new works, I want to just wave my digital arms in the air to say “hey! it’s me. a regular person who is carefully making the things that you are receiving!” 🤗

Care Within Commodity
Me…being a regular person who naps and loves my dog.

 

I want you to know that I joyfully muse and mull over every little thing. When I’m driving, walking, cooking, curling my hair, just being a regular human animal…I’m thinking about what to make, what to write, how to bring things to life in the way that will feel most delicious to me. I think about exactly which word will communicate the feeling I feel. I think about which color will tell the right story.

And I’m thinking about YOU! I’m always spinning my brain wheels about which things will make you smile or cry or think or wonder. There’s *nothing* I want more than to create things that move the beautiful people who receive them. Little things, big things, nothing things, something things.

I want to make things that make you think differently about the whole entire everything. And I want to make things that just sparkle in your inbox for the tiniest moments.

So. For this months’ deep dive, I thought I’d share what my September Artifice guests said on the same subject…

Chef Matt Desjardins talked about the beautiful intimacy of food. The careful planning, shopping, washing, chopping, plating, and serving. The human hands that create something you smell, chew, and welcome into your actual body as nourishment. And then how totally odd it is that we almost NEVER know anything about the person who has artfully formed our meals.

Ever since our conversation, I’ve been thinking about this each time I dine out. I’ve been trying to imagine the individuals taking each step to create the meal. And I try to extend a little earnestness back—if only intangibly—as I enjoy what the chefs have made. It’s a lovely sort of gratitude practice.

Ryan likewise remarked that in a world where music is SO dramatically commodified and commercialized, it’s crucial to remember that every note you hear, every image you see, every word written, every graphic has a whole, complex person behind it (or a team of thoughtful, careful, creative individuals). Maybe this feels obvious…but I think it’s really not.

How much more precious would music feel if we imagined the artist sitting in a quiet room with his guitar, trying to craft a melody? If we imagine a vocalist in the studio singing take after take to shape each word perfectly? If we imagine the conversation between an artist and a graphic designer, photographer, filmmaker—multiple creative minds pouring over the best way to deliver a story to the eyes and ears of the audience? These are a million little miracles we see and hear around ourselves every day. What more can we do to experience them with equal tenderness?

Jessica’s story is a different one…I LOVED hearing her talk about the mutual gratitude she felt with the owners and parishioners (is this the wrong word to use here?) for the mosque she hand-painted last year. I talk a lot on the podcast about the relationships between art/artist/audience, and Jessica’s is maybe the best example I’ve heard of the convergence of all three. Worshippers passed by each day as Jessica painted. They saw and appreciated the gorgeous work she was creating, and they saw Jessica, too. They watched her, they thanked her.

And Jessica had the incredible opportunity to behold people being moved by her work—feeling their worship heightened by what she made. The art itself was/is a conduit whereby artist and audience are connected. And the entire experience was/is made more valuable by the care offered and received by both artist and audience. I love it so much.

Of course, we can’t always experience art/artist/audience in such a perfect loop or symbiosis, but we can certainly do better to at least imagine these kinds of threefold connections as we consume art.

Isn’t that a nice thing to dream of?

As always, thanks for reading. I appreciate it in a deep-down sort of way.

Love,

Emily