On Technique.

posted in: Art 1
It's a very, very good record. Photo: London Jazz Collector.
It’s a very, very good record. Photo: London Jazz Collector.

Legendary jazz saxophone player Art Pepper, who loved heroin, music, and women very much and in that order, said something that, when I read it, etched itself into my brain. Every time I turn it over in my head, it feels more true. He said:

“You only need enough technique to say what you have to say.”

He was talking about music. I’m talking about anything. Didn’t go to art school? Who cares, unless your soul tells you you need to blow glass to say what you need to say and you haven’t the foggiest how to blow glass. Can’t sew in a sleeve to save your life? So what, if all you want to do is make skirts all your life. Want to write a novel but have never been to Yaddo? Big deal, unless you want to write a real connected-y story about sad people who go to places like Yaddo and then have kids who are “unknowable” (or whatever.)

See what I mean? You don’t have to kill yourself over technique unless your lack of technique is killing you.

You believe that, you can go anywhere. And you probably will.

  1. Faye
    | Reply

    Thank you Mary

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