It’s true. We are all searching our “unique artistic voice” so that, as artists, we can make an impact on our community and one day, the world. Many people want to “separate themselves from the pack” and be on their own path. But just because we want to be individuals in art – doesn’t mean we have to do it alone.
Look at all the great artists of our history. Many of the famous creators from our past and present hung out with each other, learned from each other and collaborated with each other.
They understood that creating great art means you have to surround yourself with inspiring people. Not so you can copy their work, but to be able to learn from their experiences and be inspired toward their own perspective. Don’t believe me?
- Famous surrealist Salvador Dali was close friends with photographer Philippe Halsman. If the two had never met, this fantastic photograph would cease to exist. And Dali made more than one friend in the world of art: he also collaborated with designer Christian Dior, filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock, various fractal art artists, and pop-art guru Andy Warhol.
- Authors C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien were known to be very close friends throughout both of their careers. Without Tolkien, C.S. Lewis would probably never have written the Narnia series. (And then where would Walden Media be?)
- Famous photographer and founder of Camera Work Alfred Stieglitz was married to painter Georgia O’Keeffe. Throughout much of his later career, O’Keeffe was a muse for Stieglitz and inspired his movement into a more modern perspective. Additionally, Stieglitz had close bonds with fellow photographers Clarence White and Gertrude Käsebier. Without these connections, Stieglitz could never have created Camera Work or provided so great an impact on the photographic movement.
- Composer Joseph Haydn was a close friend to Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Mozart even composed a series of six string quartets dedicated to Haydn, and the two constantly praised each other’s work. Haydn was also a teacher and prime influence for Ludwig Van Beethoven.
- Think about the Rat Pack. Need I say more? By themselves – these crooners had silky sweet voices and enough musical talent to make the world turn on its head. But when they came together – they were UNstoppable. (and not just because they had connections with the mob)