Message to tumblr oldie artists

Hello tumblr. mongreldog here, artist of an ongoing cartoony comicy universe/setting thing called REZQ.

If, like me, you are old (by tumblr standards – 32 at the moment) and still pursuing drawing, music, writing, whatever as a hobby, and feel crap about some of the amazing young talent racing past you all the time, I have a message for you. I guess this doesn’t just apply to older tumblr ppl, but older people are less likely to be able to realistically subscribe to the FOLLOW YOUR DREAMS narratives of other tumblr posts on the subject (”go to art college! spend 18 hours a day drawing!” – i have a full time job, sorry!!)


1. DON’T GIVE UP. Unless you stop enjoying it, in which case drop it like it’s hot (see, I told you I’m old). There’s a tendency, in our generation at least, to think that as you get older, you have to “grow up” and let go of things that don’t earn you money. Don’t do it. Keep going. This is a new generation and no matter what your parents might have thought about still drawing cartoon dogs as grown-ass adults, that doesn’t apply to you. Don’t feel like it must. In fact, if you have a full-time job that is unrelated to your dreams and aspirations (as is the case with most employed people) it’s even more important that you don’t stop, so that you don’t go insane.

2. DO IT FOR YOURSELF, not for fame, success or even to build a career (unless that really is your long-term goal, in which case, knock em dead). Do it because there’s a thing that you want to see created that doesn’t exist yet. That is the reward. You created something you wanted to see. Or got close, and you’ll get closer next time. Don’t let yourself get bitter about the absence of any other reward (again, money, fame, 14,827 notes on tumblr). Remember that no matter how successful someone else seems to be, everything is temporary. The most famous cartoons/songs/novels/whatever always continue to jostle for position with hundreds of thousands of others of famous texts, and in the end, the relative number of people who really care about any cultural work is small and transient. When it comes down to it, nothing matters except that it made you happy/satisfied/proud.

3. NOTICE AND APPRECIATE the people who stick with you, and SUPPORT their own work when they post it. I think there was a time, years ago, where I used to get frustrated where only the same 3 or 4 people would fav/retweet/reblog my stuff. Now I recognise that that’s because my stuff has made an impact on those people, they like it, and often, you’ve got things in common. Again, if they’re artists, look at their stuff; go out of your way to do so. It’s likely that even if you don’t realise it at first, they are doing things that share themes, feelings and goals with your own. Some of my favourite artists are people I’ve discovered this way.

This is getting long so I’ll leave it there – but I try all the time to remember these three points, so that I don’t find myself thinking “what the fuck am I doing?” when I’m drawing this stupid guy all the time:

Translation: ( I did my best - sorry for any misspellings) ^^

Daft - so what?

Hard house-music conquers the discotheques: The guys of Daft Punk are considered as the pioneers of the new, rough dance experience.

A warning from Daddy: Daniel Vangarde tried to speak to his son Thomas’ mind: “The pop business is fast and short to survive more than just one season is only possible with happiness and good relationships.” He should rather learn something stable, a job, he can earn good money with - even in ten years.

But because all fathers are like that - worrying about their sons - wasting their lives, Thomas didn’t really care and started his first band. He was 17 years old, still visiting a Parisian suburban High School, being a good boy and always listening to his father who warned him repeatedly of  the power of the music critics.

Daniel Vangarde’s big success was in the late seventies a few years after the birth of his son. He was infected by the disco fever, he danced through the weekends and rested on Mondays. After he woke up again he mixed hits for the Gibson Brothers called “Cuba” or “Que Sera Mi Vida” making him famous in the french disco scene. But the disco fever broke, the cirits started writing bad things about his music and Daniel Vangarde suddenly felt no longer good.

Thomas Bangalter, 22, who got the last name from his mother, did not forget about the warning of his father- although he had every reason to: Thomas produced House Music with his school friend Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo. They call themselves “Daft Punk” and are now celebrated as revolutionaries of dance music in Germany. The “duo that drives everybody crazy!” said the trend-setting German music magazine SPEX - their latest issue dedicated to the Frenchmen with a big cover story.

Their first album “Homework” was just out in Germany. It’s currently the hardest thing at the dance clubs right now - and those harsh sounds have superseded the techno and trance monotony in many clubs. No Wonder many record companies compete over the rights of “Homework” about a year. Virgin won the contract for a lot of money and very little influence on the music. Finally, Thomas has a good adviser - his father.

“He doesn’t really dig the music” Thomas said. “But at least he knows that we both have the same goal now as he had back then: Making the people on the dance floor happy.”

Four years ago Daniel Vangarde couldn’t deal with that kind of music his son listened to. Thomas was playing guitar in a rock band called “Darlin’” and strolled around in the Parisian student pubs. But worst of all was his appearance: ripped jeans, old T-shirts and long hair. That just wouldn’t work out with the whole “Pop star dream”.

But then a bad critic saved Vangarde’s son. The English music magazine “Melody Maker” called a Darlin-Song that landed on a sampler; simply “daft punk”. As Thomas read the article, he didn’t really know what to do, but then an English friend told him that “daft” means “stupid” and it was the worst thing you could say about a rock band.

The more often Thomas read the article, the more he understood that this critic wasn’t so bad at all and because France belatedly discovered the world of raves at that time, Thomas and his friend Guy unplugged their guitars, sold them and bought two turntables, a mixer and went dancing. Thomas even cut his hair.

Some time later in the summer of 1994, Daniel Vangarde got a package. His son already moved out from home but still reported about many changes lately: That he’d rather play his old guitar with electronic samples and House Music is the Disco of the past. In the package he also found a record with a sticker. “New Wave” and under it the new band name: Daft Punk.

Four weeks later, the record Vangarde found in the package, was sold out and this game always repeated itself until today. The most successful Daft Punk single “Da Funk” sold over 30.000 copies. In this industry ‘House Music Records’ are classified as “successful” after selling more than 10.000 copies.

The two don’t just rely on Virgin doing all the work. They have built up their own distribution system in France. Now they want to find out “will the fans of George Michael like us?”  It seems as if Daft Punk could survive longer than just a season in the pop business.

DER SPIEGEL 7/1997 (big thanks to ifcwdjd for the article link ♥)