All creativity begins with the moment of conception.
That little piece of kindling that gets the fire going. That initial source of inspiration that takes on a life of its own. That single note from which the entire symphony grows. That single spark of life that signals an idea’s movement value, almost screaming to us, something wants to be built here.
And so, in this new blog series, I’m going to be deconstructing my favorite moments of conception from popular movies. Each post will contain a video clip from a different film, along with a series of lessons we can learn from the characters.
Today’s clip comes from the Neon scene from Blue Chips:
What can we learn?
to compress yourself. What I love about stiletto heels is,
they concentrate a large amount of force into a small area. Mathematically,
they have an area of about one sixteenth of a square inch per foot. But at the
moment when only the heel rests on the ground, each foot exerts pressure of
fifteen hundred pounds per square inch. That’s greater than under the foot of an elephant.
Stiletto heels, then, become the definitive symbol of compression. They remind
us that our body of work doesn’t fully serve us if we can’t concentrate it into
a tight little package. And so, part of our job as artists is creating stiletto moments, in which we
demonstrate all of our skills at once. That’s what makes our work stick. Because
once we show people our accumulated record, not just bits and pieces; once we
demonstrate the firepower of
our creative arsenal, not just the weapon we’re currently firing; and once we
help people taste the full scope of our artistic power, not just the project of
the moment, the
world will know the depth of our creation. Neon’s stiletto
moment happens right there on that court. Within seconds, his size, speed,
strength, agility and raw power are undeniable to anyone in attendance. He’s
mastered the art of compressing himself. What hidden gift or talent might you have that deserves a more prominent
place in your life?
Lucky enough to get
out of your ghetto. Neon has had a tragic life. He’s an only child. His
mother abandoned him. His father was a fisherman who got into boating accident
and was eaten by an alligator. And to make matters worse, he lives in the
sticks. His neighborhood is so dangerous that people join the army just to go on vacation.
But all of that tragedy is grist for his creative mill. That’s why he owns the
paint. Neon’s raw talent is a product of his even rawer environment. Nobody’s
ever seen anybody like him before. In fact, he has the potential to become the
most dominant center who ever played the game. But only if he’s willing to play
a game he’s not used to playing. College hoops are a long way from street ball.
And so, if he decides to compete at the college level, everything will change. Neon
will have to study and take tests and practice with a coach and play nice with
others and shed a false self that’s made up of cultural constructs. Meanwhile,
the people in community might become disenfranchised by his success. They might
try to keep him in his lane forever, pardon the pun. That’s what makes change
so hard. It requires mourning and letting go of a portion of our identities. Are you selling out or outgrowing your origins and changing
Where my dreams begin
to turn outward. Every once
in a while, a player comes along who is so haunted by talent that we can
barely look away. A once in a generation artist who makes us think, whoa, the
world cannot be deprived of this person’s magic. When I encounter people like
this, I just want to run up and hug them until every drop of talent comes
oozing out of their nose for all the world to see. What scares me, though, is
that some of those talented people will never become as successful and happy as
they could be, since they won’t have the resources to take their talents on the
ride they deserve. And so, it’s our
responsibility to show them the replay. To grab them by the lapel and reveal what they can’t see for
themselves. And to to tell
them what they’ve done, why it matters, and why they need to keep taking shots,
every day, forever, until it’s all over. We need to be a stand for these
people’s greatness. Because without that brand of encouragement–––which
costs nothing, by the way––they may never realize how bloody brilliant they really are. Will
you stand idly by while someone’s talent gets trapped in a box?
* * * *
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.
Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.
Now booking for 2014-2015.
Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of The Nametag Guy in action here!