"The future is going to be filled with amateurs, and the truly talented and persistent will make a great living. But the days of journeyman writers who make a good living by the word-over." - Seth Godin
More often, the term ‘professional’ is used when we do something to make a living out of it. We can also, agree that there are professionals who behave worse than amateurs and there are inexperienced people who do things better than the so-called experts. Most of the path-breaking open source platforms we use today are discovered by people who simply did things for joy a.k.a hobbyists. I believe this calls for redefining the term, professional.
We can redefine a professional as someone who is dedicated to his craft and persistent enough to create a piece of art with the sole intention of adding value. Needless to say, all of us could be professionals in our own right.
Sou's Voice is a labor of love and it is for both hobbyists and professionals. The category, Tips, contains blog posts to help you discover yourself as an artist and a musician.
Chris Anderson in his book, The Long Tail mentions that
Amateurs multiply the manpower. There will always remain a division of labor between amateurs and professionals. But, it may be harder to tell the two groups apart in the future.
Once upon a time, talent eventually made its way to the tools of production; now it's the other way around. It's as if the default setting of production has shifted from 'Earn the right to do it' to 'What's stopping you?' There is a shift from consumerism to participative 'producerism'.
The internet enabled the world of peer production giving rise to mass volunteerism and amateurism. Also, a generation is growing up watching people just like them produce impressive works of creativity.
Amanda Palmer in her book, The Art of Asking introduces another perspective on the amateur v/s professional debate. She mentions about the imposter syndrome a.k.a fraud police that is inside all of us that often makes us seek approval from outside to certify if we are qualified enough to make art. Here are some thoughts that may sound very familiar to many of us.
People working in the arts engage in street combat with The Fraud Police on a daily basis, because much of our work is new and not readily or conventionally categorized. When you’re an artist, nobody ever tells you or hits you with the magic wand of legitimacy. You have to hit your own head with your own handmade wand. And you feel stupid doing it. There’s no “correct path” to becoming a real artist. You might think you’ll gain legitimacy by going to art school, getting published, getting signed to a record label. But it’s all bullshit, and it’s all in your head. You’re an artist when you say you are. And you’re a good artist when you make somebody else experience or feel something deep or unexpected. When you’ve “made it” in academia, you become a tenured professor. It’s official. Most of the time, though, “outside” appointment and approval (Congratulations! You’re an official Professor/CEO/President/etc.) in any field doesn’t necessarily silence The Fraud Police. In fact, outside approval can make The Fraud Police louder: it’s more like fighting them in high court instead of in a back alley with your fists. Along with all the layers of official titles and responsibilities come even deeper, scarier layers of oh fuck they’re gonna find me out. I can imagine a seasoned brain surgeon, in the moment before that first incision, having that teeny moment where she thinks: For real? I dropped my cell phone in a puddle this morning, couldn’t find my keys, can’t hold down a relationship, and here I am clutching a sharp knife about to cut someone’s head open. And they could die. Who is letting me do this? This is BULLSHIT. Everybody out there is winging it to some degree, of this, we can be pretty sure. In both the art and the business worlds, the difference between the amateurs and the professionals is simple: The professionals know they’re winging it. The amateurs pretend they’re not.
Another counter-intuitive idea that is relevant in today's world.
Check out a related blog post here.
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