4. Educate Yourself.

The world is changing.

Within the next few years we will be living in a world that is similar to the one we are living in now, but different enough for newer generations to not understand what “Network Television” is.

What we are living in currently is, what I’d like to call, a transformative period. This is where we are evolving in technological and scientific advancements, but not everyone has agreed to meet up at the finish line yet.

Is it important that the artists of the world do not become the stragglers at the back of the line. Which, as of right now, thing’s aren’t looking too good.

This is because the definition of an artist, an actor, a performer, is changing. These types of people are slowly decreasing in numbers. They have been overrun by a new species of creators called “Influencers.” It is because of the Influencer’s influence on the media that the value of the artist (and by artist I mean someone who has taken the time to study, learn, and practice their craft with professional intentions) is dying.

(I use the terms “artists” and “influencers” in a general manner. I am aware there are exceptions to every rule).

Keep Reading.

These influencers learn from nothing more than experience. They wake up one morning and decide to quit their day job so that they may produce self-made social media content as a full-time means of income. They did not go to school for what they are doing; they did not take a class, a seminar, a lecture on the subject of influencing. Why? Because at the time of their inception there were no such offerings. It’s not their fault.

The substance of the content the influencer produces plays no factor into their success. The only thing that is necessary for them to advance in their self-created business model is time and viewership. Timing is of the essence.  The faster they produce content, the more they will succeed at gathering viewership. Viewership is how they make their money. And they make millions of it, mind you.

They know what they know because they do what they are doing every day. They know what they know because they gather together in groups of others who are also doing what they are doing, and they, in turn, do it together. They are successful at it because the more they do, the more they will grow; like pieces of dough when you add yeast.

They are not artists. They are business people. They run off numbers. And they’re extremely smart for decoding a seemingly innocent model of communication and using it to their highest advantage. There’s nothing wrong with that. They are valid contributors to society.

Welcome to the world we live in.

However, again, I insist, the world is changing.

There are two types of education in this world:

The first type of Education is called “schooling.”

Schooling is what you do when you read a book, when you take a class, when you go to a university. It requires reading, repetition, writing, or practicing, usually in a controlled environment; a classroom or a lab of some sort. With schooling you can learn everything there is to know about a subject by reading the repetitive stories of the people who have done it before. You learn by understanding concepts and ideas. You learn by analyzing said concept and ideas in order to create conclusions about them. And after years of repetitive practice, you take a test. It is only upon passing this test that you may then be considered knowledgeable and proficient in the subject matter.

The second type of Education is called “experience.”

Experience is what happens after years and years of trial and error. You learn by doing, failing, and then redoing. You learn from making mistakes. You learn by watching, listening, touching, tasting, and smelling. Experience can only be achieved by hands-on or worldly encounters with the things in which you are trying to learn more about. Performing through action is essential. It also takes much more time to master the subject at hand than schooling might, sometimes even decades. Though the advantage of experience is that the result of attaining it will make the student more proficient in the subject matter than taking a schooling test would ever allow.

Each type is valid, but I’ll let you in on a little secret.

Experience will guarantee to grant you success, but schooling will guarantee LONGEVITY of that success.

You need both to make it in this world.

Let me say that again.

You need both to make an impact on this world.

Once more.

You need BOTH to make an actual INFLUENCE on this world.

Here’s the reality of the matter:

While Influencers are slowly rising in power within the entertainment industry and business markets, the business and companies that were once at the top of the totem pole are starting to learn how to do what these influencers have done. By the time they become equals again, the influencers will slowly start to decline and slide down the pole. Why? Because while they may have the ability to wield the profit in their favor now, they do not have the foundation, the knowledge, the proficiency to sustain their position. They didn’t spend the time to effectively learn the the craft of the art they are producing.

They churn out content fast, and while the content doesn’t need to be great to wield profit currently, imagine what is going to happen when the professionals come in and start to create fast and consistent content in the same manner. Not only will they be creating at a rapid pace, they will be creating content of higher QUALITY, yielding more viewership than the former influencer.

This is why it is important for anyone who declares themselves an artist, and anyone who has actual dreams of becoming respected in their industry, to continue to treat their vocation with respect and professionalism. Schooling is a pain in the ass, and it takes time and a lot of effort, but if you know what you are doing before you do it, it will take you half the time to do it than the people who are simply depending on experience to help them succeed. Not only that, but you will also have a greater foundation to sustain your spot at the top of the pyramid when you finally arrive.

If you don’t believe me go read the story of the three little pigs once more. All three materials were capable of building a house. But, remind me again, who’s house DOESN’T tumble over?

Exactly.

The moral of the story:

You will want to build your empire with a foundation made of bricks. BRICKS.

Sticks and Straw, though perfectly capable, and not to mention cheaper, and easier to attain, will always, and consistently, blow over.

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