Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Importance of Being Earnest

distributed cognition

Occasionally as I'm working I'll pull up a recent painting, just to set the tone. Today it's been this one, which is the latest thing I've finished for the Cyborg Project. I am up to my elbows in notes, reading things about Flow and Interaction Design (.pdf), watching my favorite TED talk that mention synesthesia, and trying to figure out what a jet pack should look like. Heavy stuff, sort of.

In the background I'm still thinking about knitting, starting the painting that I'm going to sneak into that last entry, thinking about Why People Ought To Do Things. Mostly it always boils down to: people can. We get kind of tripped up in adolescence and start thinking we can't do things.

I'm not talking about big things, just little things. People say things like, "I can't draw," people with fingers and hands and arms and adequate access to paper and pens. It's strictly untrue.

Of course they can. They're just self conscious and won't. But I wish they would. I don't think it's good for a person to limit themselves, and I also think that things like drawing, singing, messing around with dough or clay, jumping...all those things we did in preschool or as children are really valuable still. It contributes to How To Live Fully.

I was thinking about all this when I received an email from a friend. I'd told her earlier that she'd been in my dream last night, wearing a skirt made of that poly-fill stuff (that cottony mess that comes in a plastic bag at the fabric store), and that we'd talked about weird-shaped dogs.

She sent me this in response:

So now THIS is up on my monitor, becuase it makes me unbelievably happy. Pictures help. Everybody should draw pictures.