What is “the bearing?”

“The Bearing” is a place for us to tell you how we screwed up.

[-Mark N]

In doing so, it is a resource for artists and makers. Rather than focusing on the specifics of craft, we focus on more general mentoring of the creative, regardless of the field.

If you are near the beginning of your creative journey or even if you’re far down the path, “the bearing” is a place to gain information to help direct your path as an artist. The practical things we are clueless about and even cringe at early on- discipline, time management, goal-setting, health, business planning, community, client communication, creating good workspace- these sort of things can be learned, and with that knowledge comes the increase of inspiration (and decrease of anxiety) that you seek.

And for you more literary folks, we mix in some deeper philosophy as well on what it means to think like and be a creator in this world.

This is from those who have been at it awhile… like longtime residents, showing our maps to those who just moved into the neighborhood (or maybe, just haven’t left their house in a very long time).


The longer story.

“The Bearing” is a place for us to tell you how we screwed up.

It comes from conversations between myself (photographer) & my best friend Lance (writer)- conversations over the last 6+ years as we’ve each grown in our individual crafts and added other crafts into our work. We’ve grown by collaborating, grown by seeking and creating community, grown by reading and reccomending to eachother every great book & article we could read and mostly grown by making ourselves the kind of people that wanted to learn how to learn.

Ironically, I’m still learning how to do that.

We realized that, back at the beginning, if more people had told us how they’d screwed up… well, maybe we could have learned from them and wasted a little less time getting to the point we’re at now. Sometimes, people did tell us before and we just didn’t listen.

Don’t do that. Don’t be young stupid us. Don’t even be now us. Be wise, future us!

So, we started this site.

This site is like us writing letters to our younger selves. Maybe our “younger self,” depending on the guest author, is from 2 years ago or maybe it’s 30. But there’s so many things we didn’t know back then, whenever ‘then’ was that we think you should know now.

“This isn’t worth obsessing over.”
“This is something you’re not thinking about that you should be.”
“Yes, your portfolio matters.”
“no, your FB likes don’t matter.”
“seriously, GET OFF OF FLIPPING FACEBOOK.”
“that sucks, but it’s not an excuse to stop creating.”
“yes, that artist is better than you. Here’s how you deal with that.”
“hey, creative people need to work out their bodies too.”

…and so on.

Since Lance & I, the founders of “the bearing” haven’t by any means learned all the lessons about being a professional creative, we are working to bring in many others to contribute, so that they can tell the lessons they’ve learned and we can take it in alongside you.

Maybe you can piece it all together and become one of the best in your craft just because you’ve learned so damn much and were willing to listen. Or, maybe, just one article out of 10 will really stick out to you and you’ll learn just one lesson, and that will make you a little better, and that will be enough.

Most of us are still struggling, still learning, still wrestling with the the desire to get our work out there and the realization that this life does not only revolve around the exciting aspects that got us started. But it IS worthy, and the passion that got us into it can carry our work and careers into the long run if we learn how to do it wisely.

And if you have your own lesson to share… send it to me. I’d love to consider it for “the bearing”.

Let’s all learn together.

-Mark


To read the next introductory article that gives the thought behind the name “the bearing”, read Lance’s post here:

https://medium.com/the-bearing/get-your-bearings-artists-makers-and-creatives-talk-on-artistic-best-practices-virtues-and-68687976099a#.zhvpggscr

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