Just Keep Working

[Sent out earlier in the gapingvoid newsletter etc:]

Picasso, the greatest painter of the twentieth century, didn’t sit around on his rear end all day, waiting for the muse to arrive.

Nope, he just got to his his studio every morning, and cranked it out, stopping only to eat and maybe the occasional roll in the hay with his many women… And he did this for decades. He was a machine!

Sure, there are some successful artists who prefer the sit-on-rear-end method, but how many of them are better than Picasso? Exactly.


  1. I have thought of myself in the past (and others probably have too) as a perfectionist. But one day I realized that a close friend of mine made my perfectionism look amateur. The difference? I am Picasso-active and she is afraid to start anything. The realization came that she didn’t start because she never starts until she can do it perfectly. That is a day that often never comes because “perfect” is an illusion. Picasso didn’t start painting when he had it all figured out. He started painting as the means of figuring it out. Keep working by killing that perfectionism! http://www.veraclaritas.com/perfectionism-is-setting-the-bar-too-low/

  2. Of course, Einstein said that he would sit in silence and wait for ideas to descend like butterflies and land on his shoulder, or something like that. And Stravinsky similarly commented he would wait “like an insect waits” for new ideas.

    Maybe different temperaments use different means to achieve the same ends. As Bertrand Russell said, “Animals studied by Americans rush about frantically, with an incredible display of hustle and pep, and at last achieve the desired result by chance. Animals observed by Germans sit still and think, and at last evolve the solution out of their inner consciousness.”

    PS – nice blog. Keep up the good work.

  3. I enjoy and agree with about 90% of Hugh’s cartoons and messages. But this one…

    I 100% LOVE! I ordered my framed print in 30 seconds after I read my “daily cartoon” email.

    Perfection is progress and money’s worst enemy. I’ve known that logically for 10 years but I still find myself waiting for the muse to get me inspired and going. Okay, so knowing something logically, intellectually and not being able to act and change behaviors to align to those logical beliefs is not an uncommon issue…so I don’t beat myself up too bad.

    I know exactly when the muse shows up for me…just as predicable as the sun rising and my Scottish Terrier “McLaren” scratching at the door to empty her bladder 10.2 minutes after she has her after dinner drink. Being a Scottish native you’d think her after dinner drink would be much stronge than water, right? I digress…

    For me, the muse and all the power that comes with it arive as soon as I get my ass to work and lose myself in my project mentally and work from my heart. Every single time. Really.

    So when I saw this, I had to have it. Maybe having this on my office wall will save me countless hours of waiting for something magical to happen when I know what the answer is.

    I’ve had Hugh create a Cube Grenade for me and I have a BIG “Ignore Everybody” limited edition print. The cube grenade is amazing. It works better than advertised…way better. And the Ignore Everybody print keeps me inspired and on accurate thought every morning when I walk past it to my desk. Having said that, I’m thinking this print will be the most valuable to me from a real dollars and cents return on investment due to what I said above.

    Anyway, sorry for the rant, I just hope everybody who sees this print knows the power of the message within. Very, very powerful. Peace, Derek Naylor

  4. Hugh,

    You struck again. “Put that coffee down.” I was sipping some delicious caramel coffee when the daily comic came. I almost obliged :). But, I couldn’t flavor was there.

    Please tell Jason- I re-read the beginning of his manifesto that was posted. His thoughts are stunners…they put the brain into quick action and me back to work.

    Have a great week,


  5. Pablo Picasso, was a Spanish painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, and stage designer who spent most of his adult life in France. In reply to your questions, none is better than Picasso :)

  6. Great illustration. Great enough to inspire me the whole day. Yes, I agree. You have to work and quit waiting! How do you keep on working when you are not in the mood though?

  7. There no better inspiration for everyday, because if you will not work hard you will not achieve anything… And the new day must be like a small stimulus for making yourself and outward things better.