He’s Walken Here

There are few actors more iconic than Mr. Walken. His acting chops have definitely earned a place in my favorites list. But did you know the son of a gun can sing and dance too?

This clip from the 1981 musical movie Pennies From Heaven lets you watch him strut his stuff…and all in one continuous take!

How Cartoons Can Jolt You Into Being Creative

Hugh McLeod is a cartoonist. But his drawings on the back of business cards are more than just doodles – they are miniature keys to personal creativity. His novel idea got noticed and before long, he put together a book entitled “Ignore Everybody” with his own view on how to keep creative in the modern world.

This book presents 40 of his own tips on creativity, accompanied by a business card illustration. A few of my favorites are below:

 Ignore everybody.

The more ori­gi­nal your idea is, the less good advice other peo­ple will be able to give you. When I first star­ted with the cartoon-on-back-of-bizcard for­mat, peo­ple thought I was nuts. Why wasn’t I trying to do something more easy for mar­kets to digest i.e. cutey-pie gree­ting cards or whatever?

The idea doesn’t have to be big. It just has to be yours.

The sove­reignty you have over your work will ins­pire far more peo­ple than the actual con­tent ever will.

Put the hours in.

Doing anything worthwhile takes fore­ver. 90% of what sepa­ra­tes suc­cess­ful peo­ple and fai­led peo­ple is time, effort, and stamina.

You are res­pon­si­ble for your own experience.

Nobody can tell you if what you’re doing is good, mea­ning­ful or worthwhile. The more com­pe­lling the path, the more lonely it is.

Keep your day job.

I’m not just saying that for the usual rea­son i.e. because I think your idea will fail. I’m saying it because to sud­denly quit one’s job in a big ol’ crea­tive drama-queen moment is always, always, always in direct con­flict with what I call “The Sex & Cash Theory”.*

*THE SEX & CASH THEORY: “The crea­tive per­son basi­cally has two kinds of jobs: One is the sexy, crea­tive kind. Second is the kind that pays the bills. Some­ti­mes the task in hand covers both bases, but not often. This tense dua­lity will always play cen­ter stage. It will never be trans­cen­ded.”

Every­body has their own pri­vate Mount Eve­rest they were put on this earth to climb.

You may never reach the sum­mit; for that you will be for­gi­ven. But if you don’t make at least one serious attempt to get above the snow-line, years later you will find your­self lying on your death­bed, and all you will feel is emptiness.

If you accept the pain, it can­not hurt you.

 The pain of making the neces­sary sac­ri­fi­ces always hurts more than you think it’s going to. I know. It sucks. That being said, doing something seriously crea­tive is one of the most ama­zing expe­rien­ces one can have, in this or any other life­time. If you can pull it off, it’s worth it. Even if you don’t end up pulling it off, you’ll learn many inc­re­di­ble, magi­cal, valua­ble things. It’s NOT doing it when you know you full well you HAD the oppor­tu­nity– that hurts FAR more than any failure.

Art & Soul

If you could only use a few words to describe what the arts meant to you, what would you say?

From the book celebrating the arts and creativity, Art & Soul.

A beautiful collection from 123 actors, producers, directors, dancers and singers who came together, sat for portraits and wrote about what the arts mean to them.
Photos by Pulitzer Prize winner Brian Smith.
A portion of the book sales are donated to The Creative Coalition, the nonprofit advocacy group of the arts and entertainment communities.

And you thought Daddy Long Legs were scary…

Can’t stand spiders? I’m with you. They freak me out. Turns out that a few centuries ago, the natives of Southern Italy invented an entire dance devoted to keeping the spiders away:  the tarantella. Making arachnophobia fun since 1528.

Back in the 16th century, a bite from a wooly wolf spider (aka tarantula) was popularly believed to be highly poisonous and to lead to a hysterical condition known as tarantism. It was believed that victims had to engage in frenzied dancing to prevent death from tarantism using a very rhythmic and fast music. The particular type of dance and the music played became known as tarantella.

How could you look into those eyes and not fall in love, right?

Now we know that these lil guys are not poisonous (or at least do not inject enough venom to be dangerous to humans), but the dance tradition remains. And The Glorious Ones tips its cap to the early beginnings of this dance style in Armanda’s Tarentella. While this version offers no whirling dervish, it does take a raunchy look at good ol’ sexual innuendo. And I’ll take bawdy wordplay over spiders any day.

Image Sources: 1, 2