Nothing came easy. I was just born with a need to explore every part of my mind. And with long searching and hard work, I became devoted to my restlessness.
The complexities of our upbringing that gave us the foundation for our existence, may not necessarily make sense in the grand scheme of things. Poverty sucks plain and simple? The sting of such occurrences never seems to leave our psyche’s. It’s like a broken record that plays constantly until we fix the needle or shut the entire record player off altogether. Even after we have made inroads to create a better life for our situations there is still this underlying truth that remains. What price are we willing to pay? It’s common knowledge that we have suffered the most agonizing mental defeat ever known to man, and yet we still cling to the fact that one day we will be able to truly capture our experiences in a more meaningful way. Musicians, painters, writers, directors, filmmakers, producers, actors, visual artists and many other creative professionals play into the narrative of snapshotting our daily inspirations, visions, occurrences, and dreams. Richard Bach, declared that “All we see of someone at any moment is a snapshot of their life, there in riches or poverty, or in joy or despair. Snapshots don’t the millions of decisions that led to that moment”.
If all we can see is the anger, bitterness, despair, poverty, racism, prejudice, fake media, lies, deceit, prison, abusive cops, death, jealousy, rage, hunger, broken homes, disease and fear; how do we get to a place where we can rectify that our living conditions and mental state of mind is a result of something far bigger than our experiences? Yes, there has been lots of conspiracies in the wake of our destruction from our counterparts (Principalities & Rulers in High Places), the government, other races and our own communal breakdown. At times, it seems as if we need more than God to restore our breaches but the real narrative is about awakening to your real transformational power that comes from your psychological makeup. Although, we grapple for hope in many different avenues of expression (writing, selling drugs, rapping, singing, dancing, gambling, Higher Education etc.) and just about anything we can do to remove ourselves from the perversions of the soul that we face daily; we are still given the greatest opportunity to capture these moments of chaos and confusion.
We live in an age where all that we have hoped for has fallen by the wayside. We no longer live in a world that opens it heart to the demands of its time. The times in which we live calls for a greater response towards hate, addiction of all kinds, morality, love, marriage, freedom, protection, community, honor and respect. There can no longer be global agenda’s that only protects the interest of the few. Yes, our Democratic ideals and fundamental approach towards life purports many freedoms in which we often take for granted in this country. But, more can be done to rectify the way in which we view our day to day lifestyles. How do we begin to capture the underbelly of our experiences in a way that gives us hope concerning the uncertainties of life?
As a social realist and creative genius Gordon Parks embodies your ideal marksman for capturing uncertainty. Starting with a $7.50 camera he would embark upon a lifelong journey that would grant him the impetus to speak through his visionary lens. As a director, composer, writer, realist, poet, film director, and father, Parks represents an era of literary genius that captured life’s daily conditions. His insatiable restlessness for exploiting those empty spaces of life created a new imaginary trend for inspiring artists to rival. Through his social realism lens, he captured everyday life for black and white American’s at a time when racism, poverty and violence ruled the narrative of the day. His restlessness took on a new meaning for seeking and searching out life’s most tantalizing and uncompromising situations. His flair for the cinematic expressions of everyday life is something to behold and begs the question. “What was it about the art and craft of American landscape that made him to want to capture those moments?” Although, we can’t for sure understand the depth of his visionary insight and remarkable ability to capture life, he did instill in us a sense of pride concerning our ability to tap into life’s daily simplicities and struggles.
In the Summer of 1956, in the aftermath of the Montgomery Bus Boycotts when LIFE magazine, a general interest magazine with interest in photography sent Gordon Parks (LIFE’s first black photographer) to Alabama to capture segregation, he had no idea how that assignment would impact the landscape of segregation, black cinema and the African-American family. Through his polarization of black life in Alabama he shed light on how damaging racism was to the black family structure, and the importance of a society where equal opportunity should exist, not based on race, religious, economic plight or political affiliation. The real narrative here is more about being able to see the uncertainties of your day, and give those narratives a platform upon which to stand upon. As an artist your main objective is to find your creative center, find the tools that can heighten your awareness of that gift and give it to the world. Capturing uncertainty is bigger than just looking out the window of your bedroom and just painting what you see. It’s more about capturing what it is you don’t know about life. It’s those mysteries moments of confusion where you are not sure what the universe is trying to say, but you respond in kind and create out of that nothingness.
Although. uncertainty, within itself is an air of unpredictability, it is also the greatest opportunity ever known to man to bring out the creativity trapped in the dark recesses of one’s mind. You must at all cost arrest, seize and bring forth those cinematic psychological expressions of the soul. Dennis Lindley (2006), an English statistician, decision theorist and leading advocate for the Bayesian statistics, offers an interesting take on uncertainty and the means for capturing it. He explains that “You are uncertain, to varying degrees, about everything in the future; much of the past is hidden from you; and there is a lot of the present about which you do not have full information. Uncertainty is everywhere and you cannot escape from it.”. Just because you are limited in your knowledge about the things you may not come to know or comprehend, doesn’t mean that you are stripped of the responsibility to create out of that disfunction. Remember, “Art is Art and all is not lost”.
The Possibility of Nothingness
In a world full of things how do we progress to an ideal landscape where the canvas is ultimately blank? How do we find a space where it’s ultimately dark (devoid of substance or material existence) and proceed to command the light to come on? There is one place that I know of that sets the foundation for these metaphysical sequences to come alive. In the book of Genesis 1:1-2, explains that “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, let there be light: and there was light. One of the significant contexts of this passage is the meaning of the words “heaven” and “earth”. If you will ever understand what it means to capture uncertainty, you will need to define what the words heaven and earth mean to you. Despite, the numerous definitions of what the words heaven and earth represents, you will ultimately need to create your own motion picture around the nothingness of life.
As a content creator, you exist for the sole purpose of introducing cinema as an integral part of your spiritual evolution. You must come to understand Cinema and its impact on your artistic expression as a means for broadcasting your message to the world. Make it your business to let the world understand that you carry the ability to create out of the void of your existence. You do this by allowing yourself the freedom to remain comfortable in the possibility of nothingness. The possibility of nothingness is an idea that gives you the freedom to see beyond life’s limitations. It helps you see God as the ultimate creative force in your existence. If God created out of the voided existence of nothingness so can you. Why? Because you are God yourself. Psalms 82:6 declares that “You are God’s and sons of the Most High”. What a distinctive honor to be in relationship with such a divine power. You are a mere representation of his divine nature and will. When you create God creates and vice versa.
When you think in terms of what’s possible how do you define such a narrative? Is there any ontological support for the notion of what the mind can achieve? You must know and understand your mental jurisdiction. Allow the possibilities hidden within the void of nothingness to show you the importance of demanding work, effort and dedication regarding the perfecting of your artistic craft. Throughout your creative ascension you must become a foreign object to your surroundings, and begin developing the impetus to capture those moments that inspire you. Your friends, family, hobbies, vacations, school trips, video games, and those things that makes you smile ought to be fuel for creating a wonderful masterpiece. I am not throwing out the notion that you could carry humanitarian ideals, with regards for helping other children, participating in fund raisers, and being a good friend, but inspiration could come from anywhere and when it arrives see it as a space of nothingness. Allow, the ambiguity of your experience to help you make decisions when you are not sure you have all the answers.
Remind yourself, that those rumblings and groanings of the heart is only confirmation that you are the right place at the right time. Although, your firsthand experiences will differ when he comes to reading or listening to any person of authority, that doesn’t excuse the importance of taking massive action and allowing your life to speak through your artistic expression. Remember you will never rise above the constrains of life’s higher ideals unless you learn to fight objectivity with sharp spoons and dull knives. In other words, never bow to the extreme pressures of conformity concerning your creative vices. Create out of that possibility of nothingness and the rest will take care of itself.
The Lone Wolf Syndrome
You were given a specific set of rules from birth that will sometimes require you to act as the “Lone Wolf”. It’s a concept termed by many as the lone wolf syndrome in which accompanies an individual who likes to spend time alone instead of within the group setting. A lone wolf is one who works alone and prefers to do things his own ways. A sort of communal rebel who thinks for himself and loves the idea of developing dependence on none but himself and God alone. Many different ideals exist to describe such a personality mainly recluse, hermit, loner, and black sheep, but it’s more about using this syndrome as a tool for self-discovery.
As you begin understanding the importance of capturing uncertainty you will see that a lot of your time will be spent alone. Not, in an isolated fashion where you are denying the power of community and social interactions, but in a fashion where you are creating works of art, thinking new thoughts, crafting screenplays, fashioning newer ways in which to relate to the world. These ideas won’t always be created in a vacuum but the lone wolf syndrome helps to facilitate the maturation process of those ideals. Although, you will be misunderstood at times and carry a wild spirit it’s necessary for your spiritual development as a creative being.
As you begin progressing through these stages of development (Pack Mentality to Independence) you will ultimately have to become more self-reliant on your ability to act and make things happen. You are not a blood thirsty loner who takes pride in doing things without the group. It’s just that you prefer not to be driven by the pack mentality, while still being able to assert a form of free thinking dynamics into the equation. Pay close attention to your instincts and don’t allow your upbringing to dampen your active imagination. March to the beat of your own drum and don’t be afraid to take a detour from what you know to be true. Remember, the lone wolf syndrome is about becoming a trailblazer and crafting your own path. As Hannibal, a 3rd century BC Carthaginian General explains it “You will either find a way or make one”. In this case you must make your own way because nothing is promised to you in this world.
Creating your own path to freedom will not be easy and you will ultimately have to overcome loss, separation anxiety, and literally cut the umbilical cord to those things that you may love the most. While you are living your life, and trying the best you can to make a difference in this world, you must utilize this time very well and make the most of these abandoned moments. The lone wolf syndrome won’t become commonplace in your life unless you allow it. But, it will come at a moment when you least expect it. You could be starting a business, moving into a new foster home, changing schools, transitioning from one state to the next, entering college or just moving out of your parents’ home. The lone wolf syndrome carries many anomalies and can function in any individual, geographical location, gender, age or creed, so don’t pigeonhole this concept to suit one type of individual. Again, you are learning how to capture the uncertain nature of your hidden potential and creative ambition.