Technical and Talented


Recently I was working with an artist, I mean a real artist. Someone who can work on a giant canvas and create something from nothing. Well, from nothing but ideas, and maybe some imagery. There’s gesso, and pencils, and paint and brushes, and a heck of a lot of time involved, and at the end is this amazing piece of artwork that just makes you happy when you look at it.

Art is pretty amazing when it’s done by talented people…

I was busy shooting photographs and I mentioned to the artist that I really liked her work, and admired the talent and skill it takes to create it. She then said “Well, I wish I was technical” and by this she was referring to my skill set. It weird to hear that, because even though I’ve been using computers for over three decades, I tend to forget the amount of technical knowledge I have. I think there’s a few reasons why.

First, everyone uses a computer nowadays. Well, not everyone, but chances are everyone reading this does. I was using computers at home when most people were using Sony Walkmans because CD players weren’t around yet. Of course the vast majority of people just use computers, but don’t really know how they work, or how to program them, etc.

Second, since everyone uses computers, everyone uses the web. I helped build the World Wide Web. Nowadays every jackass with a Facebook account and a blog is a “Social Media Consultant” or something. Oh, and everyone can build a web site. I wrote all the code for a large corporate web site nearly 20 years ago. That seems weird, but it’s true.

Third, I tend to hang out with people who are like me, meaning, people who know a lot about computers, and who know how to build the web. I like most of these people, they’re awesome, but you tend to forget that you know stuff 90% of the population does know when you hang out with that other 10% of the people who also know the things you know. That’s a strange dilemma.

Maybe I’m just a frustrated artist? I have all these technical skills, and on occasion I can be creative, but I often feel that I’m lacking in artistic focus. It’s all very strange, but I’m finding ways to deal with it.