July 24, 2011

Those Who Seek The Credit

Excerpt from Wall Street: Financial Capital by Robert Gambee, published by W. W. Norton & Company, New York, 1999:

The new Morgan building is seen from the library of Davis Polk, its counsel of many years. One of Morgan's partners was Dwight Morrow - a lawyer and banker, father of a writer and father-in-law of a famous aviator. In 1933 he wrote to his son, who was graduating from Amherst and about to enter law school,

"The world is basically divided into two camps - those who do the work and those who seek the credit. Try as best as you can to align yourself with the first group because there is a lot less competition."

July 16, 2011

Just When You Think You Learned How To Use It ... It's Gone

Hello (Turn Your Radio On)  by Shakespear's Sister
from the 1992 album Hormonally Yours 
YouTube video posted by Birgitbramkamp

Hello, hello turn your radio on
Is there anybody out there?
Help me sing my song
La la la life is a strange thing
Just when you think you learned how to use it
It's gone

July 9, 2011

Make Your Own Chances For Advancement

Retroactive I, 1964 
by Robert Rauschenberg
Oil and silkscreen ink on canvas

Excerpt from Rauschenberg by Barbara Rose, published by Vintage Books, New York, 1987:

"I know many good artists who can't get a gallery now.

I'm glad. I'm glad somebody is rejected. How can you build any strength if it's easy to be exhibited?"

. . . . . . . . 

For several years now, the New York Times has published a series of informative articles on for-profit schools and the realities of student loan debt. 

> Follow this link to the article 'Top Chef' Dreams Crushed by Student Loan Debt written by Kim Severson for the May 8, 2007 edition of the NY Times.

> Follow this link to the article In Hard Times, Lured Into Trade School and Debt written by Peter S. Goodman for the March 13, 2010 edition of the NY Times.

> Follow this link to the article Is Law School a Losing Game? written by David Segal for the January 8, 2011 edition of the NY Times.

. . . . . . . . 

> Finally, follow this link to the article For Film Graduates, an Altered Job Picture written by Michael Cieply for the July 4, 2011 edition of the NY Times. From the Readers' Recommendations of comments and responses to the article, Anne Nonymous of Dallas writes the following:

"I didn't go to film school. I went to art school to study design. Very early on, we were told by teachers that only one in ten of us would actually make a living at our career. Of course, everybody thinks that they are the exception. I work in advertising now and I can't think of a more competitive place than the creative department of a reputable ad agency. And yes, looking back, only one person that I went to school (with) makes a living at this besides me. Everybody else just disappeared or got a job doing something else.

I work with a lot of people in the film industry (because of the TV commercial part of the business) and it's really not very different than for any other creative field. Be it design, art, film, writing, dance, music. It's all the same. The chances are slim and only people who are either very lucky, driven, or exceptionally talented (and often it takes all three) make it. When I say "make it" it doesn't mean "strike it rich". It means "make a living at it". This is something everybody should really consider before choosing a career. The arts are a lot more competitive than any other "real" profession, precisely because they're the sort of thing that looks easy, and quite frankly have very little demand in the workplace. There are a lot of dues to pay that if you're not willing to pay, there's thousands of others who will be glad to. Pay is usually terrible at first, hours are long, and you have to make your own chances for advancement. They won't come knocking. Nobody is going to "discover" you. It takes a lot of work to get work. You have to stand above all these other people who also have talent and who think they're exceptional.

You can go to a fancy school or not. That's not really important, because at the end, you make your own education. Don't count on your classes or your teachers to do it. And once you're out of school, you continue to make your own education, and the day you stop, you get eaten by someone else.

Welcome to the real world."